Lost A Sale, But Initial Phone Consultations — A Big Part Of Brilliant Customer Service
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Free Yourself From the Pocketbook Practice
Let's take a journey together; there's an important lesson to be learned. Imagine a town or city just like yours.
Sports Medicine 101: Surgery or No Surgery?
In the world of sports medicine, many careers are saved by surgeries that correct traumatic damage to the body. Muscle tears, ligament damage, fractures, spinal disc herniations, and joint instabilities are a few of the issues frequently addressed with surgical intervention.
I was sitting in a Pizza Hut in Peoria, Ill., with my friend Reggie, sometime in the spring of my senior year in college, when he started doodling on his paper placemat. In those days, the company had a picture of U.S. on the mats, showing all the locations of the "Huts" in the country.
NCCAOM Video Contest
The NCCAOM is excited to announce the launch of the second annual video contest "Because it Works!" 2015.
Should You Change an Athlete's Natural Running Form?
Once past the ankle, impact forces travel at about 200 mph into the knee. In addition to allowing the quad to absorb force, bending the knee (E) prevents the hip and pelvis from moving up and down too much (F), which is important for injury prevention and efficiency.
Integrative Medicine for the Underserved: A Seat at the Table
Numerous organizations have risen to the challenge of providing care to medically-underserved populations and here we feature one such group.
Going On-Site With Chiropractic Care
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has released a position paper highlighting the financial, clinical and patient-satisfaction benefits of providing chiropractic care at on-site corporate health clinics.
Chinese Doctors Poke Holes in Australian Study
A recent Australian clinical trial, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in 2014 by Rana Hinman, et el., evaluating the effectiveness of both needle and laser acupuncture for chronic knee pain.
Q&A With the First VA Chiropractic Residents
As you may have read previously, a major step forward for the profession occurred in July 2014 when the Department of Veterans Affairs began piloting a chiropractic residency program at five locations.
Marketing with a Microphone
When given an option, it stands to reason that people prefer to do business with those they know, like, and trust.
The Source-Luo Point Combination, Part 2
The Da Cheng includes symptoms for the source-luo points that indicate when to use them for treatment. Yang defines the method as the guest-host (it is one of a variety of acupuncture point combinations called guest-host).
Creating Relationships at Southwest Symposium
The month of May brought many interesting activities. As I have said in many previous columns this year, this profession is moving in a very exciting direction. Make sure you are getting involved. If you're not, you just might get left behind.
The Three Heater Official
This Official, belonging to the element Fire, is responsible for maintaining and regulating the heating system of the body, mind, and spirit. It is named for its function. The trunk is divided into three "burning spaces" or "jiaos."
Nomenclature and Classification of Lumbar Disc Pathology: Version 2.0
The Nomenclature and Classification of Lumbar Disc Pathology consensus, published in 2001 by the collaborative efforts of the North American Spine Society, the American Society of Spine Radiology and the American Society of Neuroradiology, has guided radiologists, clinicians and the public for more than a decade.
Meet Cheyenne: Your Future Colleague
Allow me to introduce you to Cheyenne (Chey), the daughter of some of our family's closest friends. We attend and serve at the same church together, and have known each other for many years.
An International Life: An Interview with Mary Elizabeth Wakefield
I met Mary Elizabeth Wakefield during her class last summer in Seneca Falls, New York at the Finger Lakes School of Chinese Medicine.
The Risks I Took
We all take risks when we choose this profession. For some, it is not knowing if you can make a living practicing TCM. For others, it is parental or cultural disapproval.
Desert: A Metaphor from the Study of Genetics
In most of the human lives I know about, there are stretches of time which feel stagnant, or worse. We can feel adrift, or wounded and sidelined, and these times don't seem to carry much usefulness while they are unfolding.
Treatment of PTSD: An Opportunity for the Practice of Integrated Medicine
PTSD is widespread across America today. Not only do many of our honored men and women in uniform bring it home with them from the war zones they have been active in, but it often follows any life-threatening event people go through when their lives have been in danger.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 3)
A patient with sacroiliac fixation and dysfunction ordinarily demonstrates a noticeable leg-length inequality when placed in the prone position on the adjusting table.
News in Brief
Investigating the Cellular Impact of Mechanical Force; National Board Seats (Not-So) New Officers at Annual Meeting.
November, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 11
Service is Not an Antiquated Word
By Angie Patrick
Let's face it, we have seen far better economic times. We have seen recessions come and go, and we have seen boom times. We have watched the stock markets skyrocket, and then looked on in horror as they crashed just as quickly.There is no way around it, no sugar coating it and no way to make it something it isn't. Our economy is tough, period. But for some, using the economy as justification to under-deliver your goods or services to your clients can make an already tough situation even tougher.
Have you walked into big-box retail stores equipped with 35 check out lines only to have two registers open because of personnel cutbacks to save costs. Who does this ultimately hurt? Well, first the customer, because they feel their time is not as important as the store's. Also, this hurts the store, because I can tell you I would actively avoid making purchases in that store because I know the wait times are ridiculous and I can go right down the street and get the services and products I need and not spend my hard-to-find free time in queue. The store has lost my business, so being penny wise and pound foolish is not a smart move for anyone in business.
To help you get through this interesting economic landscape, there are some basic things you need to remember about your clients. Below are some of the things you should consider before you begin to slice service levels to compensate for slower cash flow.
They EXPECT excellence. It really is not a negotiable expectation. Regardless of whether they have purchased a discount through Groupon or another service, they expect the very best you have to give, each and every time. Keep in mind, they too are short on funds, and times are just as hard in their household if not more so. That being said, the money they spend to visit you is money they must now work harder to justify spending. Providing them an excuse to cut you from their budget by providing reduced or less than stellar service is a sure way to send your clients on an expedition to find someone who will meet their expectations.
They EXPECT you to be on time, every time. Even when they are not. This is not a two way street. The customer will not wait long before they begin to wonder if this is time well spent. Conversely, the customer should also understand should THEY run late, you have allotted a certain time frame and they will have to give up massage time to compensate. Having this conversation when the customer is late for the first time, however, is not the time to enforce this rule. Be sure you have a mutual agreement to respect one another's time and have a conversation with them about your policy on late appointments BEFORE you begin to work with them is far more effective than springing a short massage on them because they are late. Doing this will likely result in a certainty that you will lose a client. A CLEAR AND DEFINED policy for both parties should be made clear before hand to avoid any controversy.
Follow up with your clients and go the extra mile to call them a day before to confirm your appointment. Doing this can allow you time to reschedule another client in the event your first client has been called away or cannot make it. Having a back-up plan is great because you will not lose revenue and your client sees this as being proactive in their care. This costs nothing but time, and is a great way to budget your time and income by allowing yourself a bit of recovery time in the event of a cancellation. The time to try to book another client is not 30 minutes before the appointment time. Having just a little heads up can do wonders for you and for the client's loyalty.
Do not take short cuts for your supplies. Remember, your clients are expecting excellence, and if you change something they have become accustomed to, they will most assuredly recognize that. Even though the economic temptation is strong to find lesser quality products or worse yet, buy from mainstream retail, the client will notice a change. If you are using a product they can buy anywhere, you are making it more difficult for them to see you as a health care professional. They might instead see you as a lesser therapist.
Providing service also includes seeing to their needs for home care as well. This means retailing goods you in which you have confidence in and personal experience with and that can be used easily at home for clients to manage pain, do a home exfoliation, an aromatherapy bath, or any other item you believe in and feel good about retailing. This can actually ADD to your bottom line, which is not a bad think when money is tight.
Service is not antiquated, just not as prevalent as it once was. It is just as appreciated now as it was when our parents were growing up. Imagine how we would feel in this day and time pulling into a service station and four employees were to run out, shine our windows and mirrors, check the oil, check the tires, and fill your tank. We would be over the moon! Your clients will be also if you work diligently to provide consistently great treatment, service and homecare. You will be assisting them in more ways than you know and you can fill many of their needs in one place. While I know your practice is not a gas station, the same basic principles apply for meeting customer/client expectations: Exceed them, and you have a customer for life.
Click here for more information about Angie Patrick.
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