Stop making your patients' lives harder

August 21, 2019

Tips to help you focus on your patients.

We live in a time that represents the very height of convenience. Smartphones alone have made our lives easier in thousands of ways. However, I’ve noticed an incredible uptick in the number of things done today that makes things harder for people.

Just think about the level of inconvenience you experience on a daily basis. You make a reservation at a restaurant and they get the time wrong. You reserve a rental car online and when you get there, they don’t have it. Even airlines have algorithms to overbook flights to ensure every seat is filled, which can cause you the huge inconvenience of getting bumped from your flight.

Related reading: Stop speaking and start communicating to improve your dentistry

So, what about your practice? Are you making your patients’ lives easier or harder? Of course your natural answer is to say your practice always helps to make patients’ lives easier. And why wouldn’t you think this? You’re providing excellent dental care, and this is something everyone wants and needs. However, most dental offices provide excellent care, so making patients’ lives easier means providing much more than that. If you truly want your patients to have an easy and convenient experience you must provide Five Star Customer Service. When customer service isn’t at the top of your mind, it can cause practices to make crucial mistakes with patients such as making them wait, neglecting to help them with insurance or being inattentive to their needs-definitely not Five Star Customer Service and definitely not making anybody’s life easier. Try doing these simple things to make your patients’ lives a little easier:                                                                                          

  • Don’t make patients wait                                                                             

  • Help patients with their insurance

  • Ask patients if they need anything during their appointment

  • Provide convenient amenities like beverages and Wi-Fi

While you may not feel the difference that doing these things can make, your patients will. So the next time you go to a fast food restaurant and pull away from the drive-through only to discover your order is wrong, think back to how you’re handling patients in your own practice. When you order an item and it comes in the wrong color, think back to how disappointed a patient is when they discover you don’t help with insurance. The next time you’re supposed to meet a friend who shows up 20 minutes late, think back to how many times you've kept your patients waiting. The truth is you’re never good enough for every patient every time, but that should always be the goal. And you can get a lot closer to that goal if you start focusing on making your patients’ lives easier.