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Adding bells and whistles to deliver outstanding patient experiences

I often speak to my consulting clients about the power of putting ‘bells and whistles’ on a situation.

For example, when greeting a patient into the practice, it is perfectly appropriate, professional and acceptable for the receptionist to wait for the patient to approach the front desk, then acknowledge the person, smile and say in a friendly voice, “Hi there, how can I help you?”

However, the impact of adding some bells and whistles is a simple and easy way to deliver outstanding patient experiences.

Bell & Whistle 1
Rather than wait for patients to approach the front desk, acknowledge their presence the minute you sense them coming in the door by meeting their eyes, giving them a big, warm smile and turning your body language to them.

Bell & Whistle 2
Rather than communicate with the patients professionally and politely, interact in a more meaningful manner with high-level interest and empathy. Increase your friendliness and energy to make the patients feel truly welcome and important.

Bell & Whistle 3
Rather than the usual verbiage to communicate, broaden your vocabulary out with wonderful, powerful adjectives and develop an engaging, enthusiastic style.

For example:
“I think you will really like Dr Smith” versus “I know you will be delighted with Dr Smith”.


“How did you enjoy your first visit with our practice?” versus “We have loved having you visit us today. You will learn quickly that we are always striving to make our patients happy. I want you to make sure to always speak to me about anything that will make being a patient here the best experience.”

The path to delivering outstanding patient experiences becomes clear after you have become confident in your professional communication skills and start adding the bells and whistles that make interactions with you and your practice unique, enjoyable and caring.