We live in a society where everyone now has the opportunity to review almost every place they have ever stepped foot in. Online review sites have become hugely popular, with thousands of people making the most of their chance to share their opinions on everything from hotels, to restaurants and plumbers. Tripadvisor receives more than 60 million contributions a year, while the number of reviews posted every minute by Yelp users is 26,380.
No doubt about it, the world is embracing the online review culture, so there’s a strong possibility some of you may have dipped your toe in the Tripadvisor pool as well. Yet, while you might be familiar with rating the last hotel you stayed at, how often have you turned the same critical eye to your own practice?
In order to ensure you are offering the best possible service to your patients and continuing to attract new ones, it can be a worthwhile exercise to ‘review’ your own practice. Of course, this is made trickier by the fact that you are busy running the practice day-to-day, and familiarity with your practice can cloud your judgement.
It is not an easy task to do, it means you need to try to view your practice with completely fresh eyes – as if you are seeing everything for the first time, as a potential new patient would be.
In this ‘reviewing’ mindset take a look at your practice, starting outside – how does it look to someone approaching, is the sign in good condition, the windows clean? Does your logo and signage reflect the practice you are today? If you are well-established, your logo and branding may well have suited you 10, 20 or 30 years ago, but maybe it is no longer indicative of the way you see yourselves today?
“Inside, take a good look around at all those little things you wouldn’t necessarily pay attention to while going about your daily business.”
Inside, take a good look around at all those little things you wouldn’t necessarily pay attention to while going about your daily business. What do the posters on the wall look like? Are they in need of updating and modernisation? Do they promote all the services you have to offer? If you have a television in the waiting room, is it showing oral health messages or informing patients about any specialist treatments you provide?
It may seem daunting to undertake such a task, as you’re not sure what you will uncover and how to set about making any improvements. Yet, replacing signage and posters can be a relatively simple task that can make a big difference to the appearance and attractiveness of your practice, and there is specialist support available to help you make these changes.
“The space you practise in is a reflection of the business itself and the people that work there, so it is important to make sure it is presented in the best possible light.”
The space you practise in is a reflection of the business itself and the people that work there, so it is important to make sure it is presented in the best possible light. It doesn’t have to fall to just the practice manager or the principal dentist to go through this reviewing process either. Try and have the whole team involved, or even willing friends and family who don’t see the place every day, so will be more independent – as everyone will have a different experience and notice different things.
This exercise shouldn’t be a one-off either – unlike that trip to the Caribbean, you are able to review your practice as often as you like, and should in order to ensure standards remain high and patients stay satisfied. So, give it a try – if you walked around your practice today, what would be your honest rating, one star or five?