Tuesday, September 19, 2006

How to Inject More Approachability into Your Dental Practice

Last week I spoke to the Greater St. Louis Dental Society. My session was filled with primarily hygienists, receptionists and chair-side assistants.

We explored something I call The OING Model.

OING represents four types of encounters between employees and patients, each of which is an opportunity to inject (no pun intended) a little more of your personality into each encounter.

About 160 people filled out index cards with potential lines, expressions and greetings that were a bit more creative, fun, unique and of course, approachable. Many of these suggestions are listed below, along with a brief description of each category. (Remember: not all of these are gold. It’s an exercise in creativity that brainstorms ideas to make your patients feel more comfortable in a more unforgettable environment.)

Answering the phone in the office, possibly greeting a walk-in

• “This is Beth, I’m here to help…”
• “Smiles are our business, how can we make them yours?”
• “Good morning, and how can we help your child smile today?”
• “You have the pleasure of talking to Rena…”
• “Lovely morning to ya!”
• “World’s greatest dental office…”
• “This is your hunting dentist…”
• “Damn we’re good, when do you want to come in?”
• “Hello, flash us your smile…”

Telling a patient you’ll be right with them during a busy time

• “I’ve lost my mind – you can help me find it in just a sec…”
• “OK, give me two seconds. Start counting...NOW!”
• “I’ll be with you as soon as I catch this kid…”
• “You’ll be the next smile taken care of.”
• “I’ll give you a chance to bite me in just a minute.”

Inviting the next patient in line to enter the office

• “Are you ready for the best cleaning of your life?”
• “Hurry or I’ll start without you!”
• “Come on in, your smile is waiting!”
• “Get moving!”
• “Ready or not, here I come!”
• “Did you draw straws?”
• “Did you flip a coin?”
• “Are you ready to rock and roll?”
• “Come on down! You’re the next contestant at…”
• “Let’s get this party started!”
• “My superpowers have been recharged: I’m ready for you now!”

As patients exit the office, you give them a lasting impression

• “Don’t forget to scrub them bugs away!”
• “We’ll see you in 6 months or 6,000 smiles!”
• “Power to the Plaque Miester!”
• “I’m so glad you got to see me!”
• “See ya later alligator!”
• “Alright, I’m finished picking on you.”

Do you OING?

Brainstorm five new ideas for each of the four encounters with your staff. Try them out, then call me in the morning ;)

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That Guy with the Nametag

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