I phoned a dental practice yesterday and got a busy signal.

It had me wondering…

Did this dental practice not have enough foresight to estimate how many phone lines in the practice might be used all at one time?

I often tell the story about when Jayne phoned a friend of mine’s dental practice, and while on the phone, she could hear that another phone line to the practice was ringing.

Jayne asked the receptionist if she needed to take the other incoming call.

And the receptionist answered:

“No. They’ll call back.”

Yes. Really.

Yes. Really!!

Show me someone who believes that their business never misses an incoming phone call, and I’ll show you a fool.

All businesses have incoming calls that get missed.

These incoming calls get missed because:

  • The business does not have enough available phone lines to allow all incoming calls to be dealt with as they occur.
  • The business does not have enough employees available to answer all incoming phone calls.
  • The business has not trained the people answering the phones to manage more than one incoming call at a time.
  • The business has a voice message service for missed calls and the people answering the phone use that voice message service as a safety net.
  • The business has a call recording service that retrieves the phone numbers of all missed calls as they happen and supplies those numbers immediately to the dental practice.

The fact is, calls do get missed.

And all missed calls should be followed up immediately.

We know that people do not phone dental practices because they have a spare half hour.

They phone dental practices because they have a dental issue and they need to get that issue fixed.

And when they are phoning your practice, they have already chosen your dental office as being the one they want to solve their dental problem.

When the phone rings at your dental practice, answering the phone and scheduling an appointment for the caller should be a fait accompli.

If you want your dental practice to grow, you need to make sure that every incoming call to your dental practice is answered.

If you want your dental practice to grow then you need to make sure that your practice is actioning four of the five action steps above. [One of those action steps above is NOT a practice grower].


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