Why creating the right first impression is critical for a medical practice

Interpersonal relations

Believe it or not, medical marketing begins with interpersonal relations. I have seen many practices attempt to implement marketing strategies, only to be thwarted at every turn because the medical team lacked sufficient interpersonal skills. One of the first areas that should be addressed before implementing any medical marketing campaigns is training the team in interpersonal skills.

81% of patients come to a medical practice by word-of-mouth referral, however, 85% of your patients will leave you for what they perceive is a lack of patient service.

If the team lacks sufficient verbal and interpersonal skills, they will provide average patient service and will probably not build strong relationships with patients. If this is the case then any attempts at carrying out successful medical marketing will likely fail.

I recommend that you assess your team from an interpersonal relations standpoint. This includes evaluating:
  • How the phone is answered.
  • How patients are greeted.
  • How often assistants check in with patients to see if they are comfortable during procedures.
  • What your assistants say to patients when the medical professional leaves the treatment room.
  • The way that hygienists relate to and educate patients.
  • How the front desk personnel interact with patients during check-in and checkout.
  • How new patients are treated during orientation and the initial consultation.
  • How your team is presenting and communicating treatment options to your patients. Is this done in a way to enable your patients to make informed decisions while building trust and long-lasting relationships?

Many people do not naturally have exceptional interpersonal skills. This is not an area generally taught as part of their training. You may hire staff with amazing technical skills but if their personal skills are not up to scratch then they may not have the skills to necessarily relate to their patients in a positive way.

I recommend that you seriously consider investing in some interpersonal training. There are some incredible courses available that specifically cater for the medical industry.