From the June 2012 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
By Barbara Marshall
As the director of a comprehensive breast center in North Georgia,
I often ask our team, “Do you want a satisfied customer?” By now, they know that my question is rhetorical, and that “No” is my resolute response. I want a loyal customer.
“Satisfied” means that if another breast center offers a nicer Breast Cancer Awareness t-shirt, the customer will consider going there for her next mammogram. “Loyal” means that the customer returns, year after year, without hesitation. That level of customer loyalty should be the goal of every breast center. I want each customer’s screening mammogram to be one that exceeds their expectations. Ensuring that experience involves listening to the customer and not merely giving her what she expects, but rather elevating your performance a notch to actually exceed her expectations. That level of performance ensures loyalty.
Numed, a well established company in business since 1975 provides a wide range of service options including time & material service, PM only contracts, full service contracts, labor only contracts & system relocation. Call 800 96 Numed for more info.
Mammography customers demonstrate loyalty when they’re exposed to a screening environment that regards their comfort as Priority #1. When I was asked to create a comprehensive breast center eight years ago, I turned to three local breast cancer customers – one long-term survivor, one short-term survivor, and one recently diagnosed patient. I asked each woman what her breast cancer journey had been like, what she had hoped it would be like, and what she wished for her daughters and granddaughters, should they ever find themselves on this journey.
These three women responded with long wish lists, and practically every item involved some aspect of customer comfort. They requested full-length mirrors so they could see their entire bodies while changing for their exams. They asked for robes rather than hospital gowns, requesting that XXL and XXXL sizes be hung on the wall, so they could avoid the embarrassment of requesting them. They wanted lockers to hold their belongings, and waiting areas that resemble warm, cozy living rooms. They requested oversized chairs rather than couches so they could sit by themselves. We accommodated their wishes, finding inexpensive but stylish furniture and accessories on clearance. Ultimately, we spent less money furnishing and decorating our waiting and changing areas than if we had purchased standard medical grade furniture.
We also offered designated parking spaces for our mammogram customers and created a free nutrition café from a converted storeroom. Dispensing free juice, soda and snacks, our café is a big draw for hungry walk-in customers who arrive from the doctor’s office upstairs to squeeze in a screening mammogram before completing their errands. This free café costs us less than 15 cents per customer, provided that every customer takes something.