Technical Specialist or all-round Customer Service Guru?

Technical Specialist or all-round Customer Service Guru?

What are you doing to engage your team and increase patient loyalty?


Daniel Redland, Director of Tempdent recently wrote an article for Modern Dentist Magazine exploring how you can better engage with both patients and colleagues to have a productive business


Having spent the last 22 years working as a Consultant Business Psychologist, I would regularly work with telecoms, financial services and manufacturing, but very rarely was there any interest from the healthcare sector.

I often wondered why this was the case; the argument always put forward was, ‘it’s a very technical role, we don’t focus on
the softer skills’. But surely this misses a big trick. Not just from a patient care perspective but in terms of business impact too.  Bad news travels; it tends to reach more than twice as manyears as praise for a good service experience, and social media now makes this even more dangerous. Worryingly, research shows that only about 4% of dissatisfied customers will voice their concerns to you, 96% won’t voice their concerns at all, and 91% of them won’t ever come back to you!

So, the question to you is what are you doing to ensure your team are supported to be the best ‘all-rounder’ and not just
‘technical’ practitioner? Here are some tips from one professional to another:

1. When recruiting, focus on behavioural skills and not just technical skills, and use a competency-based recruitment approach focusing on behavioural skills such as team working, communication and empathy. This is easily achieved using competency-based interview questions and even psychometrics.

2. Develop a robust performance management process for team members. Set SMART goals and Key Performance Indicators you can measure and monitor and tackle issues as they arise through regular catch ups.

3. Understand your team’s aspirations. Think about career paths for each team member and have career discussions with them. What are their aspirations? How can you support them? Helping your team work towards their career goals will lead to an engaged and happy team.

4. Build team spirit! Events don’t have to be intricate team building events where you have to trek the Himalayas. It might just be something as simple as team CPD or even a beer at the local pub!

So, what can you do now to tackle some of these challenges?  You might consider enrolling your Practice Managers on a course. The Dental Trailblazer group set up an apprenticeship programme specifically to target good leadership in practice just last year. You might also consider upskilling your team through post registration training and CPD sessions, which are a great opportunity to get the team together and develop them as a whole. Good luck and give us a call if you want to discuss further.

Tempdent's Practice Manager Course is open for enrolments now for the next in take in July.  For further information contact or call 0208 371 7229

CPD is available from Tempdent at our training centre, in your practice or online.  Visit here for more information on courses available or here to buy GDC verifiable online CPD

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