Tips To Improve Your Dental Office,  Part 3 ~ The Little Things Matter

Tips To Improve Your Dental Office, Part 3 ~ The Little Things Matter

“It’s the little details that are vital.

Little things make big things happen.” ~John Wooden

Hello friends,

It’s the little things that can make the biggest impact on your practice growth and the happiness of your team.  The little things that I am sharing today, are FREE or very low cost and most only require seconds of your time.

a little bit more lou vickery hayden consulting

Here is a list of 25+  things you can do starting today to greatly improve your office and in turn your personal life too! All it takes is doing a little bit more.

If you didn’t get a chance to read Part 1 & Part 2 of my Improve your Office series, please check them out here: Improve your office – first impressions & Improve your office – Make a Change .  Feel free to share them with your friends.

Betty Hayden Consulting Tip to Improve your Dental Office

25+ Little Things to Improve your Office:

1.  Hello, Good Morning! –  Make it a point to greet your fellow team members every morning. Let people know that you see them and acknowledge them with a hello.

2.  Smile More – Smiles are contagious. Smile before you pick up the phone, smile to passersby, smile to your team mates and smile in the mirror. Smiling will boost your mood, puts people at ease and makes you more likable.

3. Say my Name – everyone likes to hear his or her name. Greet your patient’s by name. Use their name during treatment. Thank them by name for coming in or calling.

4.  Say “thank you” –  Express your appreciation.  Thank you Mr.Patient for coming in, Thank you Mrs.Caller for holding, Thank you employee for your hard work today, Thank you co- worker for your help, Thank you doctor for coming in to do the exam, you get the idea. Saying thank you Improves your Office and your Health! Check out this article: 7 Scientifically Proven Benefits Of Gratitude That Will Motivate You To Give Thanks Year-Round

5.  Choose to be Positive – Your attitude is a choice and that choice is 100% within your control. Avoid spreading negativity by sharing bad patient experiences, personal problems, or problems with other team members. Choose to be happy and positive.

6.  Be kind – Be kind to your patients, strangers, sales reps and callers.

7.  I’m sorry –  Accept responsibility when you are wrong. Be honest, simply say “I’m sorry I/We messed up”. (Tip: Keep small ($5) gift cards for coffee to give to your patients when you’ve messed up, ie: running late, lab case mistake, appt. mix up, etc.)

8.  Friendly Greeting – Warmly greet every person that visits the office. Even if you’re on the phone or taking care of a patient, you can acknowledge the other person with a smile.

9. Say Please –  Make it a habit to say please every time you ask for something.

10.  Offer a proper handshake- A nice, firm handshake shows confidence and makes a good impression. (Tip: When a new patient comes in to the office, come from around the desk and welcome them with a handshake.)

11.  Check it twice – Before you send that email, letter or text, check it for spelling errors.

12.  Social Media Sites – If your office is using social media sites be sure to like and follow the pages of local businesses within your community. Click the LIKE button or comment on their posts. Easy way to build relationships.

13.  No Cell Phones – Turn down the volume and put your cell phone away while you’re on the clock. Ask your family and friends to call the office line in the event of an emergency. Be fully present during work hours.

14.  Write it down- start and end your day with to-do lists. Write a note or set an electronic reminder to check on that claim, call your patient, check voice mail, etc. Writing things down prevents you from forgetting things that are important. (Tip: Avoid placing sticky notes around your work station. Clutter is chaos to the patient.  Place reminders in a notebook that you frequently refer to or set electronic reminders.)

15.  Commendation – Commend a fellow team member when you catch them doing something “right”. Commendation boosts morale.  (Tip: Employers, commend & reward the behavior and actions that you want to see more of.)

16. Business Cards – Carry your business cards with you and use them! Get your team personalized business cards to hand out to patients and people they do business with. (Tip: Use the back of the business card with a call to action invitation.)

17. Stay on Time – Respect your employees and patients time. Do all you can to start the day on time, stay on time and end the day on time. (Tip: If you are constantly running behind schedule it might be a good idea to review your scheduling protocol. How much time does it really take to…,  Where should we schedule emergency patients… etc.)

18. Patient of the Day! – Select a patient from the days schedule to be your “patient of the day”.  Give them a certificate, a small gift and take their picture to share on your social media sites. Fun and inexpensive way to exceed your patients expectations.

19. Post- Op Calls – Doctor and Hygienist, call your patients at the end of the day to see how well they are doing. (Tip: Call all patients that received an extraction, perio treatment, difficult procedure, were fearful or new to the office.)

20.  Pre- Op Calls – Doctor and Hygienist, call the new patients on your schedule and let them know you are looking forward to meeting them. Start building your new relationship early by exceeding their expectations before their very first visit.

21.  Send a Card – In this electronic age, rarely do people get “real” mail. Send hand-written thank you, get well, thinking of you, anniversary, sympathy and  congratulation cards to your patients.  They will truly appreciate it! (Tip: Keep a supply of cards on hand in the office.)

22.  Everybody Clean Up – Pick up the piece of paper from the floor, Wipe up the spill up from the counter and Keep your work space clean.

23.  Replace the roll of Toilet Paper – Yes, I said it. Even if there are still a few squares left to spare, replace with a fresh roll. While you’re at, go ahead and fold the toilet paper into a pretty fan. 😉

24. Huddle Up – The morning meeting is essential for a successful day. If you tried in the past to have a morning huddle and it didn’t work out… try again! However, this time, please follow these tried and true suggestions & tips for morning meeting success.

25. Negative Gossip – Refuse to listen to gossip and stop speaking & spreading gossip. Simple as that.

26. Dress the Part – If you want it to be a great day, start by looking great. Wear clothes that reflect the excellent care you give your patients. Professional, clean and wrinkle-free clothes.  Brush & style your hair, if you’re a woman put on some make-up, wear a special piece of jewelry, etc.

27. Verbiage Matters – Use these words often: Absolutely, I’ll be happy to, My pleasure, You are very welcome, Certainly and Right away.

28. Memorable Goodbye’s – Make a great last impression with a friendly goodbye…be sure to use the patients name. “Thank you for coming in.” “It was great to see you today.” “We really appreciate having great patients like you!”

There you have it, 28 little ways to easily Improve your Office.

“I try to do the right thing at the right time. They may just be little things, but usually they make the difference between winning and losing.” ~Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Do the right thing, as a team work together to implement these little things in your office every day. Print this list and review it at your next team meeting.  Enjoy practice growth with a happier team and happy patients.

If you are not yet receiving my free dental marketing ideas every month to your email in box, please subscribe today. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

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Shake it Up Baby! How to Love Mondays

I love Mondays. I really do enjoy the fresh start to a new week. However, if you are miserable Sunday night because you just totally dread Monday morning, maybe feeling like my daughter in this short video clip:

If you feel like you just can’t do it! This might help:

Shake it up Baby!

betty hayden dental consultant

That’s how you can start loving Mondays.  Yes, I said it – Love Monday and Tuesday, and Wednesday and Thursday!  You already love Friday, right?  Well, get ready to love the others by Shaking up Monday.

How do you Shake it Up?  First, you need to prepare for Monday on Sunday.  Try this:

  • What will you wear?-  Lay out your work clothes. (Make sure they are clean & wrinkle-free.)
  • What will you eat?-  Prepare your lunch & healthy snacks.
  • What to do? – Make your to-do-list. (Purging your brain of everything you need to accomplish will help you sleep better.)
  • Where is it? –  Put your keys, purse/wallet, coat/shoes, etc. near the door.
  • Go to bed early – .  (Staying up too late will only make you crabby in the morning. Avoid using/watching electronics in bed.)

Okay, so there are some of your Sunday responsibilities.  Here’s what you do Monday Morning:

  • Wake Up – Tell yourself this: “I’m going to make this a GREAT day!”
  • Eat a healthy Breakfast!  Do not skip this important meal.
  • Dress the part, if you want it to be a great day, start by looking great. (Brush & style your hair,  if you’re a woman put on some make-up, wear a special piece of jewelry, etc.)
  • Leave early enough to allow yourself plenty of time to arrive at work without feeling rushed.

So now, you’re getting ready to walk in to work –  put a smile on your face and remind yourself that “you” are going to make it a great day.  And here are some “Shake it Up” tips:

  • Act like it’s the happiest day of your life.
  • Greet your fellow co-workers. (If you are the only one there, look in the mirror and say hello beautiful….  kidding not kidding 😉 )
  • Start the work day with a morning huddle –  this will keep everyone on the same page, and gives you the opportunity to set “the tone” for the day.  Encourage everyone to share their ideas for marketing, better customer service and increased productivity. (See Morning Huddle/Meeting Tips Here)
  • Learn something new –  Look to learn better & fresh ways of doing things by reading books, magazines, listening to podcasts, watching a webinar, attending seminars and learning from those around you.  Remember this, you can learn a lot by getting feed back from your customers/patients (good & bad).  
  • Get some fresh air –  if possible, eat your lunch outside the office or take a short walk during your break.  A breath of fresh air and change in scenery will  help clear your mind and reinvigorate you.
  • Drink plenty of water and eat foods that refresh, not ones that make you feel tired & sluggish.
  • Work from a to-do-list.  If there’s something that must be done, go ahead and get it finished. Get busy, get it done, and feel the freedom of no longer having it hanging over your head. 

I really like this quote from Brian Tracy:  “Your ability to discipline yourself  to do what you should, when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not,is the key to becoming a great person and living a great life.”    

Great advice!

These are just some of the many suggestions and helpful tips out there to help you “Love Monday” – and if with all of these suggestions you still “hate Monday” well then, try this:

Turn the volume up on your computer, Play this video by the Beatles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVlr4g5-r18  and “Shake it Up baby!”

If you do not already subscribe to receive our free dental marketing and practice management ideas right to your email inbox each month, please do so today. Feel free to tell your dental friends about Hayden Consulting. ~Thank you!

We welcome your comments, questions and likes.

Make it a GREAT Day!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. If you have children, I understand that your evening and morning routines can be quite challenging… I shared some tips over at my Bacon & Kids blog that might be helpful to you! It was written to help with the Back to School routine but the idea’s are helpful for any time during the school year. Here it is: Organization Tips

“Every moment is your opportunity to build a life that’s rich and full, so take a deep breath, aim for the stars, and make it happen.” — Ralph Marston

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Morning Huddle Tips for Success

Note: For an updated morning huddle tips and ideas, please see Tips and Suggestions for the Best Morning Huddle Ever!

Hello Friends,

If you feel the morning meetings are a waste of time or if you’re already conducting morning meetings and want to make them more effective, Please keep reading!

Today, I want to share with you some tips and suggestions that will help you have effective morning huddles and answer some questions that many of you have asked about morning huddles.

morning huddle tips and suggestions for dental office success

Why should I have a morning huddle/meeting?

The morning meeting is essential for a successful day. If you tried in the past to have a morning huddle and it didn’t work out… try again! However, this time, please follow my tried and true suggestions & tips. Every dental office wants to produce more, collect more, stress less, have happy doctors and team members and consistently exceed patient expectations. Right? Well, effective morning huddles help to make those things a reality.

Remember this: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance!

When should the morning huddle start? and How long should it last?

Fifteen – twenty minutes before the first scheduled patient.   It should last no more than 10-15 minutes. Taking 10-15 minutes first thing in the morning to ensure the day starts off happy and productive is well worth it.

Who should attend the morning meeting?

Everyone. If scheduling prevents everyone from attending…at the very least the doctor(s), hygienist(s ), assistants and someone representing the administrative team. It is imperative for a team member to be assigned at every meeting to update the employee(s) not present of what was discussed/announced. No one should be left in the dark. This eliminates any “I didn’t know” or “no one told me!”

Who leads the huddle?

Rotate team members to conduct the meeting and make certain that everyone stays on point and that the meeting ends and starts on time! Doctors (lead by example) be present at the start of the mtg and end each meeting on a positive note. Team members from each department can & should contribute what pertains to their particular department.

What do you talk about?

Focus on: Today and Tomorrow and a little bit of yesterday 😉

  • Holes – Can a hygiene patient in need of restorative slide over into the doctors chair? Anyone coming in with the doctor that is due in hygiene?
  • Emergency time – Where can we put the “true emergencies”?
  • Potential trouble spots – Review schedule for any potential trouble/hiccups/hangups. Such as: doctor needed in multiple places at the same time, habitually late patient, copays that must be collected, difficult patient, etc. Do everything in your power to start, stay & end on time, exceed patient expectations and work together as a team for a smooth & happy day.
  • New Patients / Referral Sources – Who are our new patients today and how did they hear about our office? Everyone be ready to warmly greet all patients but introduce yourselves to all new patients. Thank them for coming in.
  • Pre-op calls – Any new patients coming in tomorrow or the next day that the provider can call and welcome?
  • Same day services – Identify any patients that would benefit from same day services (fluoride, xrays, desensitizing agents, whitening, mouthguards, better home care tools)
  • Post-op calls – Did we call yesterday’s patients to check in on them? Preferably the doctor and hygienist should make their own calls. (Who do you call? All new patients and any patients that had/were extractions, perio, fearful, etc.)
  • Social Media – Who will help with that today? Ask patients to like the office on Facebook, follow on Twitter & Instagram. So many reasons throughout the day to post to your social media sites, such as: a patient brings in a treat, to welcome a new patient to the office, a child joined your kids club/team, celebrate a beautiful cosmetic restoration/teeth whitening, etc.
  • Testimonials/Reviews – Who is a candidate for providing a testimonial/review? Be alert throughout the day to ask for testimonials/reviews. Especially when a patient compliments the office on something… ask for a written or online testimonial. Take their picture (with permission) to post on your social media sites/website. NOTE: If a patient that is coming in for today has previously filled out an online survey be sure to review it. If they had a problem make certain it’s not repeated, if it was praise be sure to thank the team and the patient!
  • Goals – Look at Production, Scheduling & Collection goals for yesterday, today and tomorrow. Reminder to collect all co-pays at time of appointment!!
  • Treatment plans – Remember, offer the very best treatment options to your patients, let’s not “watch” or “wait until next visit” chances are it will only worsen. Let the patient decide for themselves! Were there any patients that came in yesterday that we treatment planned and they did not schedule an appointment? WHY?
  • Ata-boy/gal minute – What did we do “right” yesterday? How did we go the extra mile for a patient? Did you notice any team member that did something nice for a patient or another team member? Did anything happen yesterday that could be improved upon or avoided in the future? If yes, How?
  • Positivity – End the meeting on a positive note. Tell a funny joke, read a positive quote and/or thank your team. This meeting sets the tone for the day… Make it a happy one! Let’s go change someone’s life or at the very least help them smile bigger and healthier!

Here are a few additional tips for a successful morning huddle:

  • Come prepared! Have ready copies of the schedule (today and tomorrow). Charts/treatment should be reviewed the day prior to the huddle. Be sure to have available collection, scheduling and production goals for today and tomorrow and yesterday’s results.
  • Stand for the meeting. This helps to keep the huddle on time and hold everyone’s attention.
  • Maintain a positive attitude regarding the importance of DAILY morning meetings.
  • Use a check-list! This will help you stay on time and cover all points.

I strongly encourage you to implement daily morning huddles, simply because I know that they’re effective and I want all of you to have happier, more productive and stress-free work days!

If you already conduct morning huddles, way to go! Feel free to share with me any of your tips for successful morning huddles.

Should you need any help implementing these ideas or have any other questions that I can help you answer…I’m ready to help.

Huddle Up and Have a Great Day!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

If you are not yet receiving my free dental marketing ideas every month to your email in box, please subscribe today. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

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