Living Without a Fear of Change

When I grew up in the 1950s and 60s, most of our fathers had career jobs that they expected to have for 30 years, and then retire with a decent company pension to last them the rest of their lives. There was very little unplanned movement in their life-paths. It was of course, the nation’s post war mentality of World War II and Korean War when conformity was the norm. By the beginning of the 70s, all that was over. Most of our mothers began to work outside the home. Business adopted the techniques learned in the war years of transferring workers to where they were needed. Consequently, it ripped up local family roots by transferring their workers to different states or other countries. Suburbia became the focus of civic life as urban areas were rife with poverty, anger and dissatisfaction.

Institutions like marriage, the value of a university degree, career stability and the faith that government always did the right thing for its constituents crumbled before our eyes. Now most people who are married today are in their second or third marriage. A traditional college degree has become a huge luxury that many people cannot afford, and cannot repay during the average duration of their careers. Tech school degree graduates have starting pay as high as many four-year degree graduates. Most people entering the job market can expect to have several major career changes during their work lives. Outsourcing has shifted most manufacturing jobs to other countries where there is an abundance of low paid skilled laborers available, converting the United States into a service economy. Change, and plenty of it is the norm for citizens from every country with a free market economy, so how do we adapt?

Frequently there is a certain amount of pain or discomfort associated with change, and that is why people fear it. As in most of the human experience, people tend to focus on the negative because it winds up being that which most harms them. Many people are very sensitive about criticism of their work performance. For example, employees can go for months or years with nothing but good reviews on their job performance, then they make an unforced error. Their mistake gets called out and they get a less than perfect review. All the previous positive reviews are forgotten and only the most negative is remembered. It is a change in their life that brings them pain, so they come to dread all change and begin to resist it.

In the dental industry, resistance to change can have very real consequences. The practice that cannot adapt, is doomed to flat or negative growth in its clientele. If you have worked for 30 years in a multigenerational practice, then you have seen dentistry grow from small stable, personal, pillars-of-the-community institutions into large, luxurious brass and glass offices with general and specialty practitioners under one roof. You have seen the marketing program consist of a single discrete sign and bold print phonebook entry explode into sophisticated multimedia marketing programs.

Not all change is bad and many times well-thought out change can bring relief instead of pain. One of the best changes I can recommend to dentists is that they hire a contact center to take over the webpage 24/7 chats on their webpage, and to answer calls from media-generated leads calling the office. Unlike the front office staff of a typical dental office, contact center agents are not occupied with outbound calls, endless insurance paperwork and face-to-face interactions that the dental staff has to do during every hour the office is open. Contact center agents are free to talk to the clients with a welcoming and friendly tone. They are specialists at getting new patients into the chair as soon as possible. Concierge Contact Center takes hundreds of thousands of calls and chats a year, passing on countless messages and scheduling more than a hundred thousand patients for our clients every year. With Concierge Contact Center your office will grow from this change and you will make and keep more profit than ever before. Your staff will be relieved, happier and better able to provide the customer service that creates patient loyalty thus, resulting in many more referrals.

John Ross