Healthcare today has so underwhelmed the Patient whereby people walk-in to a healthcare practice with their guard up. Not necessarily the case in Concierge Medicine because what a Patient craves most in Concierge Care is the time and friendship with a Physician who is willing to listen. Don’t take our word for it? Take a Look at what Patients are telling us about Concierge Medicine in 2018 and 2019 … click here. AND, watch this video about ‘THANK YOU NOTES’ and what one Concierge Doctor did that amazed one of her Patients … (Watch Video)
SO What do PATIENTS EXPECT from their DOCTOR? Explained (Our Video Answer At the End…)
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By Michael Tetreault, Editor
There is so much advice on how to respond to criticism, which even I’ll admit is necessary today to read, vet and sometimes apply — especially in healthcare.
Healthcare today has so underwhelmed the Patient whereby people walk-in to a healthcare practice with their guard up. Not necessarily the case in Concierge Medicine.
But let’s flip the script for a moment today. How do you respond to compliments?
Many of you know, we absolutely love Doctors around here. You are modern-day superheros who’ve chosen a white coat or a stethoscope rather than a cape. But how do you react when a Patient pays you a compliment?
Tip #1) Don’t Ignore Compliments.
This one’s kind of a head scratcher … because you don’t want to appear prideful, obviously. However, you want to acknowledge the comment(s) and respond appropriately, right?
Afterall, a Patient is paying you money but also paying you a compliment, which is even more rare these days in medicine. I try to give as many compliments to the Doctors in my life as possible. You’re expertise and patience is invaluable to me. I hope that by treating my Doctor(s) with kindness, they can inturn end their day better than it may have started.
Patients also give you their schedule and they expect you to respect it and them. That’s challenging in itself. They also unload many of their problems and they desire a listening ear. When you actually deliver … and they see it … wow!
Patient verbal compliments in Concierge Medicine come more frequently than in other medical practices, as they should. If they’re not, you’re not doing something quite right — plain and simple, sorry.
John Amodeo Ph.D., MFT wrote an article in Psychology Today entitled “Practical Tips for Metabolizing a Compliment: The art of receiving appreciation” in which he wrote … We’ve been taught that we’re selfish if we bask in the good feeling it brings: “Don’t let your ego get too big!” “Don’t be full of yourself!” “Be self-effacing.” Sadly, compliments may be contaminated and neutralized by considerations that are fear-based or shame-driven: “Will they think I have a supersized ego? Do I deserve these kind words?”
So my question for you as a Physician today is really more rhetorical. How do you receive and reciprocate kindness and compliments from your patients?
There’s no right answer necessarily. Ignoring them is a wrong answer, of course. But what will you do the next time a Patient pays you a compliment?
If you’re a reader of Concierge Medicine Today, then you know that Concierge Doctors LOVE ‘Thank You Notes!”
We’ve written more about this topics in over a decade encouraging Doctors to use these … and guess what, they do!
RELATED STORY | DOCTORS | Thank YOU NOTES | DOGS
John Amodeo Ph.D., MFT noted in his article that in a letter written in 1855 from Ralph Waldo Emerson to a young Walt Whitman, Emerson wrote: “One concentrated effort I’ve made in the past year has been the regular practice of sending notes of appreciation to strangers — writers, artists, varied creators — whose work has moved me in some way, beamed some light into my day. It’s so wonderfully vitalizing for us ordinary mortals to send and receive such little reminders of one another’s humanity — especially in a culture where it’s easier to be a critic than a celebrator.”
Jacqueline Whitmore, a Forbes Contributor, Author, Business Etiquette Expert and Founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach wrote A phone call or casual email may feel like enough, but it doesn’t have the same gravity as a mailed letter. Think about it. You receive countless emails per day, but how many handwritten notes do you receive? One of my clients recently told me that he has received only two thank-you notes in 10 years.
Every one of your Patients needs a small deposit of your time, over time. Take the time to care about what’s going on in their personal lives, and genuinely caring and remembering what they’re going through. Say this through a random act of kindness in a short note and snail mail it to them. This is important, not only because it creates a closer bond with your existing Patients, but also because it helps them help you. They are spreading the word about you to their friends, many of whom might not be a current Patient. And, as they do, they are helping build your practice.
Amodeo closed with these words in his article It can feel good to float appreciation toward others, and it just might lead to more compliments drifting your way.