This quote came across my desk today:

“You absolutely have to become ok with not being liked. No matter how loving or kind you are, you will never please your way into collective acceptance. You could be a whole ray of sunshine and people will hate you because they like the rain. So just be you.”

Ain’t that the truth?

Isn’t that true.

Show me someone who spends their life trying to please everybody, and I’ll show you a loser.

It is impossible to please everybody.

When you try to do that, to please everybody, then at some point in time you will actually end up going against your own values and beliefs.

It is impossible to please everybody.


When you work for someone, you must follow company policy.

Your beliefs and behaviours are chosen for you by your employer, who pays you to perform certain tasks.

If you do not share those same beliefs and you are not in agreement with them, then in a democratic country you have permission to leave that employment and go and work elsewhere.

But you can’t have it the other way.

You cannot choose to collect wages for behaving and speaking contrary to legal company guidelines.

At a dental office…

Some things that dentists do to patients are unpleasant for the patient, but are in the patients’ best interests to have completed.

Things such as root canal treatment, and extractions.

These are brutal and barbaric treatments that the public try to put off and avoid.

In fact, the public mostly try to delay necessary dental treatment for as long as they can…

“It’s not hurting…”

“I can’t see it…”

These are just a couple of reasons that patients believe are valid for postponing and delaying treatment.

A dental receptionist who wants to be liked by her patients will allow patients who call to cancel or delay appointments scheduled for NECESSARY TREATMENT that are already made, without considering that the treatment is important and is indeed necessary.

A dental receptionist who wants to be liked by her patients will allow patients who call to cancel or delay appointments already made, does so without understanding that postponing that treatment will always allow the condition that is needing to be treated to get worse.

When a patient with a dental appointment calls to cancel or postpone that appointment, the reason they do so is because they do not understand with clarity, what the harmful consequences of delaying that treatment are.

And maybe they haven’t been told about those consequences…

When this happens..

When this happens, when a patient calls to postpone an appointment, we need to remind the caller clearly of the consequences of their choice here, and not just acquiesce into

“Sure you can. That’s no problem. Just call me when you’re ready.”

Because language and behaviour like that is not in the best interests of the patient’s health and well-being.

No child enjoyed having to take their medicine.

As children, we took our medicine because we knew that if we did not, we could get sick, and even die.

It may not have tasted nice, but we knew that medicine was doing us good.

And so did mother.

So when a patient calls to change their appointment…

So when a patient calls to change their appointment, be firm like mother used to be.

It’s in the patient’s best interests to keep the appointment where it is.

Know that when you are acting in the best interests of the patient’s health, you are acting with autonomy.

Your role in the practice is to help your patients to better health.

Being a “nice guy” and allowing patients to delay treatment, is not good customer service.

Mother didn’t do it with the medicine… she knew what was best.

You need to act in the best interests of your patients.


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