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Customer Service Recovery for Healthcare

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Hi. I’m John Tschohl. I’d like to talk about how we can use customer service recovery for healthcare to eliminate some of the customer complaints. To get customers to come back. Now you might call them patients, I like to call them customers. In your healthcare operation, whether you have a nursing home. Whether you have a client. Whether you have a home care business. I don’t care what type of business you have in healthcare. Bad things happen. Things go wrong, everyday. People are human.

The problem is when we just say to the customer, sir, I am so sorry. That’s good customer service, but it’s not service recovery. How do we take a customer that’s upset. I was sick and swearing, but you know people really wouldn’t swear. How do we take that person who’s ready to kill you and flip them? In 60 seconds they think they’re dealing with the greatest company in the entire world. That’s what customer service recovery for restauronts is all about.

There’s 4 steps I want you to use. Number 1, is you got to act quickly. That means every single person in your healthcare operation has to be able to make fast decisions in favor of the customer on the spot without checking with the manager or supervisor. Making a phone call, sending an email. They make very fast decisions in favor of the customer.

Second thing we got to do is take responsibility. All we got to do is say, we screwed up. It’s our fault. I made a mistake. It’s my fault. Okay. Sir, we scheduled you at the same time as somebody else, the doctor’s not going to be available. It’s absolutely our fault. Nobody’s ever heard anybody say, we made the mistake. Because everybody lies. We think that we can just blow them off and they’ll never hear.

Third thing we gotta do is we got to be empowered. Everybody has to make fast decisions, who’s interfacing with the customer. I don’t want anybody to have to go up a chain of command. I don’t want anybody to have to talk to somebody else. I want the employee to be able to make a decision right there with the customer. The cost is minimal if the employee does it. The impact is 100 times stronger, more powerful than if it goes up the chain of command.

Then the other thing you gotta remember, people like myself they get onto Facebook, they use social media, they communicate. There’s a whole lot of people that are a lot less … more quiet than I am. They’re not as assertive as I am. You know what they do? They said, goodbye. You never hear from them again. That’s very expensive.

The fourth element of service recovery is we have to compensate. We have to give things of high value, low cost, so the patient, the customer says this is cool. Sir, Mr. Tschohl, I am so sorry that we over scheduled and it’s going to be at least 30 minutes before we can get into the doctor today. Because of the inconvenience that we’ve cost you, we are not going to charge you for today’s visit. It’s called compensation, as giving things away that have high value.

Now, if you have a healthcare operation, and you got a copay. Sir, we’re going to not charge you the copay today, because obviously we screwed up and it’s our fault. By the way, you’re one of the best customers we got. Mr. Tschohl, I really apologize for the inconvenience we’ve cost you.

Let me just summarize again here quickly. Take responsibility, be empowered, and compensate. If you can do that in your healthcare facility, you’re going to be able to keep your customers when bad things happen. Thank you.

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