Last weekend Jayne and I ventured out to lunch at a gastro-pub I spotted in June wh xzile participating in a 35km charity fundraiser walk.
The hotel had only recently re-opened after sitting derelict for some twenty years, and the refurbishment did not disappoint.
When we arrived at 1:15pm on the Sunday afternoon, I dropped Jayne off outside the hotel while I drove on to park the car some 600m down the road. By the time I joined Jayne back at the pub I was surprised that the line was still of a reasonable length, and that Jayne was still the last person at the end of the line.
While we waited for the line to advance, and we chatted with a lovely couple from Oxford UK, we were updated regularly by waitress Haydee about the status of tables available for dining.
Haydee let everyone in the line know that the pub dining was “chockers” [Australian vernacular for “chock-a-block” or for “full”] and that as soon as tables were cleared and available the hotel staff would be admitting people from the line into the restaurant…. Haydee also let everyone know that the hotel staff were moving as quickly as they could to accommodate those in the line.
Haydee was a breath of fresh air.
Her enthusiasm for her role, and for her immediate task of placating hungry diners was indeed palpable.
Jayne just wanted to take Haydee home with us… she wanted to see whether Haydee might want to come and work for us…
When a table soon became available for us we were excited to have Haydee escort us to that table and seat us, with a full explanation of processes and what we could expect from our afternoon dining experience.
What has this got to do with dentistry?
During my career as a dental practice owner, there were a couple of instances where waiting patients were LET DOWN SIGNIFICANTLY because front office staff did not keep them informed as to why their dentist was not running to time…
And maybe this failure to inform waiting patients was due to those staff having unclear understandings of their roles and responsibilities… this would have been due to the poor training and procedures that my dental practice had implemented [or failed to implement] with those staff members.
Or maybe it was simply due to a lack of awareness [in my dental team] for the feelings of disappointment growing in those patients who had been kept waiting because their dentist had failed to run to time.
In both those instances in my dental practice, if my front office staff had gone and spoken to the waiting patients and explained the situation [as Haydee had] instead of IGNORING THOSE PATIENTS, then maybe those patients may not have left upset and feeling taken for granted.
What we saw here at the gastro-pub…
What we saw here from Haydee at the gastro-pub was a classic diffusion of potentially damaging incidents, that could have impacted negatively towards the business.
And that’s what should have happened at my dental practice in those two instances, back in the day…
Your customers will feel disappointed if they feel that they are being taken for granted and are unappreciated.
Haydee’s actions that Sunday made everybody in that line feel that she was talking specifically to them.
And none of them minded that they had to wait a little bit longer before they were seated and indeed were eating in this amazing gastro-pub…
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