A few weeks ago I began sharing with you some of the ideas that I implemented during my practice of dentistry over a thirty five year period that impacted significantly to separate me from “other” dentists in the provision of dental services in my area.
I promised you five simple changes that you can implement in your office that will impact immediately on how your clients and patients perceive your dental office as *THE* dental office that cares, rather than being seen as just another dentist.
These changes, which I like to call *MAGICAL MOMENTS* are simple to implement points of difference that made my dental office *THE* Dental Office of choice in Parramatta, in Western Sydney, and allowed me to command great respect from the community as being *THE* Dentist to go to.
CHANGE NUMBER TWO.
Cut the over-the-patient chat
Here’s a Question. I ask you this: In a social setting, have you ever been accused by someone near and dear to you of “being there, but not really being there”? Being present but not really being present? Ever been accused of “not being in the moment”?
I know some dentists who like to rant and rattle on to their dental assistants while they work away on the patient below.
Kind of like that scene from M*A*S*H* the TV show when Hawkeye is performing delicate surgery but seems to be easily allowing his lips and mouth to be chatting about other things while his hands are saving lives?
Well guess what, that’s TV! It’s make believe! Not real!!
Don’t even think for an instant that you can. You cannot! It’s impossible to give one hundred percent to your patient while you have your mouth and mind in gear on another topic.
And even if you think you can, as a dentist, multitask, think of the message you send to your poor patient laying down there, mouth open, often in a state of fear or terror?
I feel very strongly that over-the-patient chat is so disrespectful. On two counts.
Firstly, the patient is paying for your time. They should not be subject to listening to something they may not want to hear or may want to contribute to, but cannot, for obvious reasons..…take your pick.
Secondly, they do deserve your one hundred percent attention. Chatting over the patient to me implies a little bit of blasé…
At Active Dental, we were regularly complimented by patients on how much they appreciate our level of concentration while performing their dental procedures. This is because once we picked up the drill, it was “all systems go”, for concentration!
We also developed a series of unique signs that I used that allowed me, as the dentist, to request visually certain items that are regularly required, like dry tips, cotton rolls, articulating paper and dental floss, without having to break the “cone of silence”.
Patients often compliment us on our level of professionalism during treatment procedures and our perceived [by them] concentration and dedication to the intricate task at hand.
The other thing about eliminating banter and maintaining a code of silence is that when we do speak, the patient’s mind is attuned to our voices. What this means is that our silence during treatment then allows our team members greater opportunity to present our “thank you” philosophy in front of the patient. It allows us all to present our courtesy to each other in every request, praise, and piece of gratitude that we utter, and these displays of courtesy never go unnoticed by the patient.
Remember, that while the patient is lying flat, their visual range is limited to a dental light and whatever is on your ceiling. This means that they are then more attuned to audio and verbal stimuli.
So, be WITH your patient. Don’t be “off” somewhere else.
Always, when treating and performing dental procedures on your patients, be IN THE ZONE. Your patients will appreciate it.
Dr. David Moffet BDS FPFA CSP is a certified CX Experience coach. David works with his wife Jayne Bandy to help SME businesses improve their Customer Service Systems to create memorable World Class experiences for their valued clients and customers. Click here to find out how David and Jayne can help your business