Two weeks ago, I worked with the staff at a large, local primary care practice teaching them some basic customer service-type skills to help them better manage their patients and, truthfully, improve their own job satisfaction, too. Nurses, receptionists, the referral group, billing and cashiers – clinical and non-clinical staff attended. From making lists of the things their patients complain about most (you guessed it – prolonged time in the waiting room), to determining what the benefits to managing things differently might be (fewer headaches for everyone), we arrived at some simple and no-cost approaches they could use.
Their assignment, then, was to begin implementing some of those ideas, to assess what did, or did not work, and to begin thinking themselves of ways they could improve that constant patient interface that can become so problematic for everyone.
Then, after ten days of practice, we came back together to debrief.
Now, I’ll admit… I was a little nervous. I had no idea what to expect. Had it worked? Did they actually implement some of our ideas? And if they did, what was their assessment of success?