Are you just a pair-of-hands?

Henry Ford was a genius with automobiles. But with people, he had his limitations.

More specifically with the “worker-person.”

On one occasion he asked, “Why is it that I always get the whole person, when what I really want is a pair of hands?” 

You, friend…and dental professional are more than “a pair of hands.” Though there are days, chairside, bent over mouths, preventing, restoring, treating, diagnosing, treatment planning…that you feel like a “pair of hands,” right?

Years have gone by, and the Industrial Revolution mindset still rears its head. It gives you the idea that you’re a “production unit.”

It’s easy to see how your team can feel that way too. And if you’re not careful, that is how you can communicate to your patients (“production” instead of people).

Good news: you’re whole-y valuable! Chin up there, Sport!

Let’s talk value. Because that’s what you bring to every patient who trusts you enough to allow you to diagnose, let you treat, and part with their hard-earned resources to stay healthy (and remember…bottom line…it’s about health!).

Three L’s of Value (and Why You’re More than a Pair of Hands)

1)     Listen between the lines
Your patients are saying more than you’re possibly hearing. Value-based care listens between the lines where you’ll hear their deeper motivation for treatment.

For example…Remember it’s not about porcelain veneers – it’s about your patient’s confidence to smile in front of a crowd as they deliver a presentation. Or it’s not about orthodontic treatment –

it’s really about attending their 25th high school reunion next summer looking better than they did when they graduated.

 

2)     Leverage features into benefits
It’s Marketing 101. Features appeal to logic. But benefits connect emotionally.

That’s why no one cares (really) about your state-of-the-art thingamajig you invested in. Stop talking up the technology and instead talk up the benefits it delivers.

Do a feature-benefit assessment of every technology, procedure, product, or service you provide. Then present around the benefits.

 

3)     Look beyond today
Your ultimate professional responsibility is wellness. Patient priority one: prevention.

But won’t that diminish returns?

Hmmm…good question, but…

Maybe (with a long term perspective) you’ll begin to feel more “whole” and less like a “pair of hands.”

Just a thought…and a value-able one at that!

Is your practice being skewered? Don’t let it…..

It is amazing how the small actions of one person can totally undermine an otherwise fantastic practice or business. Don’t believe it? Check this out.

Our hometown of Baltimore is constantly receiving accolades as one of the best restaurant cities in North America. Why should you care? Because of this.

Recently a brand new Peruvian restaurant called Inka Grill Fusion was reviewed in The Baltimore Sunpapers. (Despite the downfall of newspapers, they still have a lot of clout when it comes to making or breaking a restaurant as their reviews are not only read in the paper but sought out online.)

It seems the setting was beautiful and the food was great. Yet the restaurant received a lousy review. Why? Because the reviewers felt their waiter did a horrible job. In line with Peruvian cuisine, they “skewered” him! (You can read the review here: http://www.baltimoresun.com/entertainment/dining/bs-lt-inka-grill-fusion-review-20160922-story.html

This is really sad, and maybe a little bit unfair. After a sizable investment, lots of planning, an incredibly creative chef, and doing so many things right, they were ultimately judged by the poor behavior of one person.

You can be sure that after this review came out, this server got a tremendous ass-whooping if not a firing. And here is how this relates to your practice.

No matter how great your office may be, oftentimes you are judged by one person who doesn’t care to give every single patient a memorable experience every time they visit or are on the phone. It can be anyone in the practice – a hygienist, a dental assistant, a business team member, and perhaps more frequently than we like to admit…the doctor!

You can be doing 99 out of 100 things right and all of it can be undermined by a single person doing a single act. The beautiful crown you are about to cement is forgotten if a patient doesn’t feel completely appreciated. The gentle touch you provide is not as valued if you ran twenty minutes late. The beautiful office is undermined if the patient doesn’t get their questions answered in plain English. And on and on and on and on…..

So take a lesson from Inka Grill Fusion. Hopefully they will clean up their act and survive the bad opening review; then again they may not. Don’t let the same thing happen to you and your dental practice!!