Creating A Memorable First Impression

From the moment a patient calls or walks through the door, their experience begins. Dr. David Moffet emphasizes the importance of understanding who you’re speaking with and acknowledging them properly right away. Eliminate frustrating call trees and long hold times that leave patients feeling like an afterthought.

“Do you mind if I put you on hold for a minute?” is a simple courtesy that goes a long way, says Dr. Moffet. Find out the caller’s name and details before putting them on hold unnecessarily. If you do need to place them on hold, let them know you’ll call back in a set timeframe rather than leaving them indefinitely on speaker.

When patients arrive in person, have a team member greet them by name if possible: “Hi Jenny, I spoke with you on the phone earlier. Welcome!” Little personal touches like this convey excellent customer service and make patients feel expected and valued from the very first interaction.

The Art Of The Arrival

While many practices focus heavily on the clinical experience, Dr. Moffet found some of the biggest opportunities for differentiation lay in the arrival process and time spent waiting. Go beyond a simple “take a seat, we’ll be with you shortly” which carries undertones of being an inconvenience.

Instead, have a friendly concierge warmly welcome patients, offer refreshments, and engage them in light conversation about their visit. This puts people at ease and forges connections. You can even designate an outgoing, personable long-time patient to briefly chat with newcomers about what to expect.

Little courtesies like walking patients to the treatment room instead of calling out their name can elevate their perception of your practice immensely. Pay attention to all those often-overlooked touch points.

Building Relationships

In today’s impersonal healthcare landscape, patients don’t just want clinical excellence they crave a personal connection and feeling understood as individuals. Dr. Moffet’s team made a point of following up after even minor procedures, calling patients at work the next day to check how they were feeling.

Gestures like this reinforce your genuine care and concern for the patient, not just an optimized revenue model. Getting involved in the local community, such as joining a chamber of commerce, also helps build long standing patient relationships and positive word-of-mouth.

Map The Full Journey

To deliver a consistent, cohesive experience, Dr. Moffet had his team meticulously document every single step of the patient journey through process mapping workshops. From that first phone call or website visit booking all the way through follow-up communications, they outlined main processes, potential service lapses and recovery procedures, and “wow” opportunities to exceed expectations.

This proactive approach of viewing the practice through the patient’s eyes ensured no touchpoint was an afterthought. By empowering the team to build the protocols themselves, Dr. Moffet gave them ownership over crafting an exceptional experience.

Empower Your Team

Instead of dictating top-down policies, Dr. Moffet facilitated collaborative workshops where his team built their “ultimate patient experience” protocols themselves through discussion and consensus. Front desk staff mapped out processes for appointment booking and reception. Clinical team members outlined in-room procedures and follow-up.

This bottom-up approach gave team members ownership and allowed their innovative ideas to shine. Things like unique service recovery gestures or creative arrival lounge activities emerged organically. Regular coaching and monitoring of actual patient phone calls allowed staff to refine their skills in a blame-free environment.

By redefining healthcare as an exceptional hospitality experience, Dr. Moffet’s practice couldn’t be confused with any commodity competitor. Implementing even a few of his philosophies like skilled phone handlers, warm arrivals, personal touches, and an overarching patient journey map can elevate your practice’s experience and loyalty immensely.

Getting In Touch

Readers can connect with Dr. Moffet and learn more about his approach to optimizing the patient experience through his book “How To Build The Dental Practice Of Your Dreams: (Without Killing Yourself!) In Less Than 60 Days” available on Amazon. You can also set up a time to speak with Dr. Moffet about your practice on his website: