This Is Where The Patient Experience Can Begin And End

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The Patient Experience begins at the first personal contact at your Dental Office with the person you hire to answer your phones or reply to emails.

The last point of contact may also be this same person.

Do you know how important it is to hire the RIGHT person to be that first point of contact?

I see the role of the person who answers phones in a dental office now starting to be fully realised by the Dentists who hire them.

I see excellent Dentists doing the very best dentistry and working hard to create the very best patient experience, and it ALL falls down when the person answering the phones is the WRONG person or a person who just does not have the skills to do the job well.

The Dentists scratches their head wondering what is happening.

“Why is my marketing not working?

“Why do I not have enough new patients?”

“The phone must not be ringing much.”

The phone is ringing but the calls are just not being converted to appointments.

The Dentists I work with finally get it and realise that they need to change the people answering their phones and/or upskill their existing team who have a great attitude but struggle coping when the phone calls.

Over the last twenty years Dentistry has changed dramatically.

The people who called through twenty years ago made an appointment. After all isn’t this why they called in the first place?

Now with the internet and many sources of information our potential patients are:

  • researching us
  • reading other people’s reviews and experiences
  • asking so many questions
  • resistant to going ahead

The people answering your phones need to be well armed and ready to handle all of these calls but unfortunately most people are not.

There is no point pouring large amounts of money into marketing your practice if the person answering your phones cannot make appointments for the people who call your office.

This does not add up.

Sit down and do the maths. If it doesn’t add up then you know something is wrong.

What is wrong is the person answering your phone needs to be excellent at answering the phone.

They need to be able to handle each call so the outcome is that an appointment is made.

This takes knowing how, practice, and measuring results.

So think carefully about who is answering your phones.

Check to see if they are doing an excellent job, a good job, an average job or a bad job at answering the phone.

It is time that Dentists realise the responsibility they give to the person who has the phone in their hand.

You rely on the person answering the phone in your business to make appointments for each and every caller.

After all, isn’t that the reason why those people have called your dental office?

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only ONE new private client. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are You Giving Your Patients The Wrong Message?

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When we think about a message in our Dental Office the first thing that often comes to mind is the message that we will leave when we have been trying to get hold of a patient.

I want you to think about another type of message.

I want you to think about the hidden message we give to our patients when we let them know about our Cancellation Policy.

My thoughts on policies are this: I feel that we introduce policies to our practice because we have no other way of getting our patients to do what we want and when we want. All that this shows our patients is that we have very little influence over them, along with a real lack of mutual respect.

I know we are running a business and our patients do need to know how we run our business and what everyone needs to do to make the relationship work.

We need to stay in control of our business so we can better help our patients.

But why do we believe the only way we can do this is by having policies that patients must even read and sign before we can even start a relationship with them both on a business and personal level?

Ok, there are always going to be a few of our patients that don’t know how to follow how you run your business but what about the other people?

One example of a policy that I just don’t get is the “cancellation policy”.

I personally believe that our customers and patients see the cancellation policy as a threat. What they see is us saying that if they do not follow the cancellation policy they will be punished.

A cancellation policy is a great way to scare patients away.

I know it can also filter patients who were going to cancel their appointment for no good reason but is this a good enough reason to have a cancellation policy?

Is scaring patients a great way to start a trusting relationship?

I also see the cancellation policy sending out a message to patients that “We have many people who cancel appointments.”

We are just highlighting that we have such a problem with patients cancelling appointments that this is the only thing we have left to do.

When we use a cancellation policy all we are saying is let’s punish and offend the many so we can sort out the few that cancel appointments.

This just doesn’t make sense!

The scariest part of a cancellation policy is that you may never know how many potential patients you are losing because you are scaring them away!

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only ONE new private client. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tell Your Patients This Is How We Will Be Doing Things

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I remember over the years that I worked in my Dental Office that there were a number of changes that would happen at the practice.

Changes to our team, changes in our office and surgery floor plan, changes when we hired a hygienist for the first time and when our surgery hours changed.

When we changed things we would start to become concerned about what our patients would think. Our patients may not like these changes.

Now we all know that as all businesses grow then it is inevitable that changes will happen.

Part of growing is changing. Part of changing is making things better for your patients.

We soon discovered that most patients were not really concerned by change, we just thought they would be concerned.

We were worrying unnecessarily about how our patients felt about the changes around them.

I remember when we hired our first hygienist, we were concerned about how the patients would feel not having their preventive care appointment performed by their dentist.

For most of our patients it was not an issue, once we explained everything.

Because we were confident knowing our patients were receiving the very best of care with the hygienist, then the patient was more than happy to see the hygienist for this appointment.

This concern about change also happens when a person leaves your team.

You immediately feel concerned about what your patients will think and you became concerned about what to say to your patients.

When you let your patients know that something has changed at your dental office then all you need to do is then tell them what will happen from now on.

Keep in mind that your patients are loyal followers of your dental office where you connect with them and acknowledge them and make them feel great. Your patients love you and keep coming back to see you because at your dental office you go above and beyond with patient care.

When you turn around and let them know something has changed then for most of your patients this was never going to be a problem.

Be confident when you tell your patients that things have changed.

Your patients will be ok with it if you are ok with it.

Your patients know you have their best interests at heart.

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only ONE new private client. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To Hold Or Not To Hold. That Is The Question 

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Lately there has been a lot of chat about what to do when multiple phone calls are coming into a dental office.

Ultimately the goal is to answer and offer solutions to all of our callers but in a busy practice this can be a challenge.

An easy and effective solution I once gave at my workshop when asked about this dilemma was:

“If you haven’t got enough people to answer the calls coming into your business then you need more people.”

I know it does seem like a sensible and straight forward solution to what is a problem for some businesses.

You do want to keep track of the number of calls coming into your office. You need to know how many calls are coming in and how effectively are they being converted to appointments.

You also need to know how the calls are being answered.

Are the calls being managed well?

Are the calls answered by the second ring?

Does the person answering the calls have enough time for each caller, or are they being rushed?

Does the person answering your calls know how to handle multiple calls?

I have noticed that the skill of handling multiple calls coming into a dental office is a challenge for many people.

Answering multiple calls is not the easiest thing to do, especially if no one has shown you how.

As soon as you have multiple lines, at some point in the day more than one or two lines will ring at the same time.

That is a good thing. You do want this to happen. It means that your dental office is in demand.

The challenge now is to ensure that you get to each caller within two to three rings.

Placing someone on hold is all about the timing.

You need to ask yourself this question:

“How long will I be on the other line?” 

You must know where you are up to on each call at all times.

If a second call comes in and you have just started speaking to the first caller then you need to ask the second caller’s name, find out briefly the reason for their call, and their contact details, and then let them know when you will call them back.

Keep in mind that there is a risk when you call a person back that they may have gone ahead and made another appointment at another dental office while they waited for you to call back, so never delay the return call.

When you pick up a second call always ask permission from the first caller if you can place them on hold for a moment.

Never pick up the second call and immediately tell the caller you are placing them on hold.

“Thank you for calling Green Dental. This is Jayne. Please hold.”

Think about those times when this has happened to you on the phone.

You feel unimportant and you have no idea how long you will be on hold.

You now run the risk that the person on hold will hang up.

Make it a rule never to do this!

Ask their name and explain you are on another call and do they mind being on hold for a moment.

The other rule is to make sure you have something for your on-hold caller to listen to while they wait for you.

Having silence is wrong. Chimes or bells is equally wrong.

I would suggest non-irritating music.

Test the music choice out on a few of the team and get their feedback on how they feel listening to the music.

A better choice than music is recorded information about your practice and how you help your patients. The message should be all about the caller and the patient experience they will expect at your practice.

A great message can even start the person on hold thinking about something they hadn’t even considered.

So have a good look at how your phones are answered and how the caller is placed on hold.

Now if multiple calls are coming into your office and you have a patient arrive for their appointment and another waiting to make their next appointment then……. that will have to be a whole new blog!!

These are the many challenges of working at the front desk of a dental practice!

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only ONE new private client. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This One Action Will Wow A Person Who Calls Your Dental Office 

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You must be wondering what that one thing is that will wow potential patients and the patients you already have.

There are so many things we can all do on the phone and in our Dental Practice that will make a huge difference to our patients and how they feel.

There is one action that I see very little of but when I do it is amazing!

This one action is to be a “problem solver” when you answer the call.

A problem solver is a person who searches for a solution, a way and the answer to the caller’s problem.

Now I know the person answering phones is not the Dentist and they can’t absolutely diagnose the caller’s dental problem but they can start to offer a way to help the caller.

As soon as you answer a call you need to start asking questions to find out what the caller’s dental issue and concern is.

Ask yourself these questions while you are on the call:

What does the caller need help with?

How can I help them best?

What solution or offer of hope can I give them?

This is your job when people call your Dental Office. It is not about answering the phone and talking the ears of the caller.

It is about asking questions, listening, asking more questions, offering one or more solutions and then making and confirming that appointment.

I had the pleasure of talking to many airline representatives this week.

There was a significant variety in the people I spoke with on the phone.

One person was stern, forceful, asked questions but seemed to dismiss anything I was saying and asking, and was not interested in listening to my story attached to the reason for my bookings.

The next person seemed helpful but did not have much of a solution.

I then got cut off and they didn’t call back.

The last person was Angie. Angie the Angel from Hobart. I even called her this on the call. “Angie the Angel.”

Why did I call her this?

Well she was like my guardian angel.

She listened, asked the right questions, connected with me and went through a whole series of ways to find me the tickets I was looking for all along.

She found the tickets. The tickets that the other airline representatives could have found but did not search for them or spend the time with me that Angie did.

It was amazing. I kept saying how much she had made my day.

Imagine if I had not made that additional call and just resigned myself to no solution.

I believe there are a whole lot of people calling into Dental Offices right now who are not being helped with a solution or a hope to their dental concern.

People love people who help them and find solutions to their problems.

The people calling your Dental Office are wanting and looking for the right person answering their call to offer them help and a solution.

Answering a call and wowing people is how you start that lifelong relationship.

Be a problem solver, help the caller and they will make an appointment with you.

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only ONE new private client. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Is This A Big Problem When You Answer The Phone In Your Dental Office?

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When you answer a phone in a Dental Office you must make it your mission to find out what the caller’s priority is.

When a person calls your dental office we know they have not called you for the following reasons:

  • To have a chat
  • To order a pizza
  • To ask a question and hang up
  • To be rude and annoying
  • To waste their time and your time

A person calls a dental office because they have a dental concern or problem.

Their concern might be:

  • They are worried because they have not seen a Dentist for a while and something could be wrong.
  • They have not had their teeth cleaned for a while and they have noticed their bad breath.
  • They have a tooth that has chipped or is broken.
  • They have discomfort or severe pain
  • They want their smile to look better
  • They hate their crooked smile

The list goes on.

But this is what happens on so many calls coming into the dental Office.

The caller asks this type of question:

  • How much does it cost?
  • Can I get an appointment today?
  • Will it be expensive?
  • How much will I get back on my Health Find/Insurance?
  • How long will it take?
  • Do you have easy parking?

The person in your office taking the call then immediately answers the question, the caller does not like what they hear and that is very often, the end of the call.

Does this sound familiar?

Is this what happens on many calls being answered in your Dental Office?

Well have a good think about this.

Every person that calls your dental office has already cost you money in marketing and advertising to reach them. If you add up the calls that don’t make appointments and then work out the dollars you have already spent, you will be shocked.

Every person calling your dental office, has a dental concern or problem that you can help them with.

The problem is that unless the person answering the call knows how to get past that initial question the caller asks so they can find out what the caller’s priority is, then NO appointment is ever made.

That initial question can be like a big brick wall getting in the way of helping the caller.

Your dental team need excellent phone skills so they can knock that wall down and help the caller by making them an appointment.

The last thing you want is your team answering calls and saying hello and saying goodbye!

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***

Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only THREE new private clients. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are You Checking This When Your Patients Phone Your Dental Office?

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One of the first things you must do after you have greeted a person on the phone is to find out if they are a New Patient or Existing Patient.

This is so important to get right at the beginning of the call.

If an existing patient calls your dental office you already know them.

The first step is to bring up their patient file once you know their name.

Now don’t wait until the end of the call when you go to make their appointment, bring up their file immediately.

As your patient talks about their dental problem or concern, then you can start searching their patient family file notes, clinical notes and their dental charts.

Your job when an existing patient calls your dental office, is to start your investigation and help them.

You will now be armed with vital information about your patient while they are on the phone.

This will always impress your patients.

There is nothing better than someone knowing you well enough to be able to help you.

Your patients will always expect you know them and their dental history, and you should.

Don’t let your patients down.

When you know your patient, you are able to easily ask questions regarding the health of their mouth.

Clinical notes can give you a big picture of what is happening so you can then make the most suitable appointment for your patient.

You can also give the dentist the heads up on the patient’s dental issue before they arrive for their appointment.

You have the tools to start helping your patient and give them assurance that you know what is going on.

So if you are not already using the patient information that is at your fingertips, then you must start.

Most Dental Offices are not doing this, so be the Dental Office that is and start really helping your patients on the phone before they arrive for their appointment.

This is A+ Professionalism and the type of patient experience you want your patients to have.

***

This blog  features simple practical ideas that are easy to implement tomorrow in your Dental Office, impacting immediately on your Patients’ Dental  Phone Experiences, and ultimately, improving your practice profitability.

***
My FINAL live full day workshops for 2017 “How to Turn Every Dental Phone Call Into A Valued and Kept Appointment” are being held in Sydney on Friday October 6, 2017 and in Brisbane on Friday November 24, 2017.

Click here on this link to register.

***
Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more,  download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..

*****
At present I have availability for only THREE new private clients. For more information on how I can improve your Dental Office’s Phone Numbers contact me, Jayne Bandy at  jayne@theDPE.com

 

 

Posted in Customer Service, Dental Consultant, Dental Front Office, Dental Management, Dental Phone Excellence, Dental Practice Management, Practice Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment