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A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
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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