By John Ross
In previous blogs I have mentioned the importance of articulating goals to the staff members, front office and back, from top to bottom. In so many dental offices Lynette has worked in there is little to no coherent knowledge about what are the motivating goals of the practice owner.
Many owners do not think it is important for everyone to know these goals, because they have personal goals for the practice that may seem self-serving on the surface. For example, if an owner tells staff members that she/he wants to maximize profits to have a more comfortable life, more economic security, and perhaps a much earlier retirement that the staff will ever see for themselves, then there is the very real possibility of envy, friction and disharmony between the staff and owner. All the sudden staff members may feel exploited so that the owner can have a lake home, a luxurious car and wonderful vacations.
The above attitude is not good to project for either staff or owner. Let’s face it, we all have desires for economic security, good health, nice homes and dependable (even stylish) cars. These are the common motivators that we can all embrace. These, we should take for granted. So, what are practice’s goals that lead all staff members toward fulfilling these needs and desires?
Essential to any success is the viability of the entire operation. If the operation is dysfunctional, then no one will have a job, or at least not a happy, sustainable job. So, let’s say the first goal is to become a highly functional practice. What does that take? Training in every position, from receptionist to dentist. These days continuing education is the norm, not the exception. The clinical staff is already well aware of this, but the front office training is now an essential part of a profitable operation. In the front office, everyone from the receptionist to the office manager needs ongoing training to further their skills and deepen their knowledge base. Employees who are challenged to grow, feel invested in and valued. This is key to helping an office constantly become better. The ROI on investment is rapid and as competency increases, so does customer service, and soon thereafter, profits. We have seen a 10% to 20% jump in practice growth after just one training.
Then comes the effort to maintain and increase clientele. With ever-increasing marketing and competition, holding on to market share is harder than ever. Consequently, the second goal to should be to keep existing patients and to add new ones. How do you maximize your marketing expenditures to guarantee growth? Again, this is a total team effort to make certain old patients stay and new patients arrive and don’t leave. With the emerging demographic realities, social media is a necessity. The result of this is that when a business starts campaigning online, it is advertising 24/7. This means that there is much more market penetration, but it comes with new obligations. Now your clients are shopping for new dentists, day and night, weekdays and weekends, AND they expect to be served in “real time,” or they will hang up and call the next entry on their Google search. Millennials are impatient with inefficiency and will not leave a voicemail or wait for a recall. The best way to solve this problem is to have a 24/7 contact center answer after hour calls and chats. Again, the ROI is extraordinarily fast. You will be shocked at how many new clients you will book in the middle of the night.
Share these goals with the staff. Help them grow and achieve their professional goals by training them to serve all your patients better. Leverage your social media by using contact center services to bring in new patients 24/7. You will wind up with the best, most profitable practice in your region.
Concierge Contact Center can train your front office in world class customer service skills. We can also answer the after hour calls and respond to texts and chats generated from your social media campaigns. Our agents can securely access your scheduling software and book new patient appointments while you enjoy a well-deserved night’s sleep or a getaway weekend knowing that we’ve got you covered.