That’s the policy / “They” say I have to do it this way
The employee says, “I know it’s a hassle to answer all these questions, but they say I’ve got to ask you everything. It’s the policy.”
The patient either hears, “It’s a hassle for me to ask you these questions too. There are many things I’d rather be doing than listening to your list of health concerns,” OR “This organization is more rule-centered than patientcentered. They control everything and the employee is powerless.”
Us vs. Them (UVT ) rears its ugly head in many of these situations. By removing themselves from situations and abdicating responsibility, employees convey that they are helpless against the administration ogre and thus, helpless in serving the patients’ needs. Even if this isn’t their intention, it further erodes the patient’s confidence in that particular employee and the organization as a whole. And if that employee is the patient’s primary contact with the organization, that patient might ask himself if he wants to return to a hospital where it seems that employees care more about policy than they do about the patients.
That was the other shift / department
Blaming another shift, department or employee is just one more responsibility-dodging tactic that some employees use. These employees like to think that they single-handedly deliver the best care for the patient in spite of everyone else’s incompetence. But they are only emphasizing that there is a lack of teamwork and respect for other staff. Again, the customer is left feeling uncertain about the care he will receive due to the lack of teamwork.
Don’t expect much from Dr. X
Sometimes employees go a step farther than blaming another shift or department. They let their frustration show and end up eroding the trust that patients have in their physicians and their health care organization. Imagine a patient or family member asking when they can expect to see the physician only to be told, “We never know when he’ll show up. And when he does, he’s in and out so fast we can rarely get him to focus on anything.” Or how about a patient who is trying to make an appointment with a doctor, only to be told, “Don’t expect to see him before 9:00 a.m.; he’s always out surfing until then.”
Among all of these hair-raising statements, this one has the most potential to frighten senior leaders and patients alike. Senior leaders hear their employees blatantly eroding trust in their teammates and providers. Patients, on the other hand, hear that their doctors are too busy or disinterested in them, which is an open invitation to check out the competition.
We’re short staffed
Think about the best dining experience you’ve had. Presumably, service ran smoothly, your server anticipated your needs, and your food was perfectly prepared. On the surface, the experience ran like a well-oiled machine. Odds are that behind the scenes, your server was covering for a co-worker who called in sick, the cook was missing an important ingredient and the dishwasher was backed up. But you knew nothing of this. That’s because the staff is totally focused on providing you with a great experience, regardless of their own turmoil. Their behavior remains customer-centered.
So why do our employees sometimes feel that it’s appropriate to spill behind -the- scenes details to their patients? The patient expects (and deserves) to receive quality care regardless of whether or not you’re short staffed or short on supplies.
The service experience should run smoothly in all circumstances, with the patients knowing nothing of what’s happening behind the scenes. Complaining to the patients about staffing is another effective way to erode their trust in your organization.
You should see what’s wrong Disadvantages Of Supplements with this other guy!
A lab tech breezes into a patient’s hospital room with a cheery smile. As she prepares her tray, she starts chatting, “I’m really glad to see you, Mrs. Smith! I’ve just spent half an hour in the room next door. That guy took forever to produce a urine sample!”
From that point on, Mrs. Smith isn’t totally focused on her own needs. She’s worried about what the tech will say about her in the next room.
Even when employees think they’re speaking in general terms about patients, their other patients view it as a betrayal of trust. It doesn’t have to be as blatant as this example either. Nurses chatting at the nurses’ station can be heard by patients and their families. Patients can hear employees at a registration desk describing other patients.
It’s natural for patients to think, “If that’s what they’re saying about the other guy, what are they saying about me?”
Patients don’t necessarily express their concerns about these statements to the employees who make them. Think about it, if List Of Liquid Medications you were already in a vulnerable position, how likely would you be to confront the person who is making you uncomfortable?
What patients will do, however, is express their discomfort to others. If you’re lucky, they’ll start with your service recovery process, and you’ll have an opportunity to reestablish your organization’s relationship with them.
Most of the time, patients won’t take that official route. They’ll tell their hair-raising stories to their friends, family, colleagues, neighbors, and thanks to the advent of social media, to the entire internet. And then they’ll ask for recommendations for another health care provider, all before you even know anything was wrong.
As you can see, it is what you don’t know about your service experience that could be hurting you the most. Every minute of every encounter, your patients are judging the credibility of your brand, your commitment to confidentiality and the quality of your patient care.
It’s time to tune in to what your employees are saying and, help them learn to filter their remarks through the customers’ ears before all your patients are running to the competition.
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