Do Big Shots Screw Up, Too? Yeah, BUT…
My mom and dad like to spend their winter in warm places. Can’t say I blame them. The Oregon Coast in the winter can be gray. Very wet. Cold. And, did I mention, gray? Sounds like Oregon’s Willamette Valley, where I live, too, during the winter months (for those of you who wonder how long winter is in the Northwest, it’s basically from November 1st thru April 30th).
This winter has welcomed some dental challenges for my mom. Even though right before she left to their warm wintering grounds, she had a filling done, cleaning, exam, etc., a problem tooth was missed.
She called and asked if I could refer her to a dentist where she is spending the winter. Sure, says I. I know a few dentists in the area, and one, in particular, that is quite well-known, whom I know personally.
So, I sent her on her merry way.
First appointment, “Yes, Mrs. Jones, you definitely will need a root canal for that tooth.”
Second appointment, no problem. Got her crown prepped and done, too, by her third appointment.
By now, she knows the folks in the office pretty well and she likes them all really well, too.
Then, over the weekend, she just couldn’t get rid of some annoying pain. Figured she had a nerve that wasn’t quite taken care of in that tooth.
Turns out, it was just a bite issue. The doc shaved the tooth down a bit, and presto, no more pain.
All went really well. She even signed off on their Facebook page with their cool in-office iPad (I so want one but can’t figure out what I’d use it for!).
Here’s where things fell apart, and frankly, it’s not unusual. It happens at SofTouch™ Dental on occasion, in YOUR office, I am sure on occasion, too. But why I bring it up is because it’s a good way for you and I to stay on our toes.
The office blew it on the insurance billing and sent her a bill with a balance due when it should have been a write-off. My mom’s pretty sharp on this insurance deal, so she takes it in, brings it to the OM’s attention, and like the good folks they are, they immediately took care of it.
Begs the question: Why did it happen in the first place? Aren’t offices catching these errors before they happen and reach the patient? No. Not even in some of the most recognized offices in America are they perfect.
Second thing she mentioned to me: the office was very … well, empty looking. Perhaps just a light day?
So dear reader, rest assured, even the “top dogs” have slow days and employees that blow it.
BUT, that’s not the real take-away here. No.
It’s how you and your office staff react to these situations that count.
Do you fix the problems patients bring to your attention and do it with a smile? And, when things are slow (your schedule looks like General Patreus marched through it), do you TAKE ACTION immediately to reverse the trend?
Speaking of slow times…January has been “hole-y” at SofTouch™, but we took action right away and fixed it.
For example, as part of the solution, just today, we had a free exam ad appear in the local paper. It’s a half page ad. I invested $650 to run it. Circulation today, about 40,000 or so local residents will get the paper. Before 10AM, we had 5 people booked. Last week, mailed an extra 1000 postcards (3 new pts so far). Another 1000 go out today.
If you’d like the ad that’s booked the 5 already, let me know by joining ClearPath® Society (click here), today, and I’ll email the ½-page version and the full-page version to you right away!