THINK SERIES www.med-‐ium.com What’s bad about goodservice quality?Ratan Jalan , Founder & Principal ConsultantMedium Healthcare Consulting
Incredibly, a wholelot! www.med-‐ium.com Allow me to explain
Just think about how o8en you have received ro<en service. Be it railways, electricity boards, water supply, passport services or even private sector providers in sectors such as telecom. Now, think about how o8en you have actually complained. Rarely, I am sure. Unless you have some a<achment, have the need for using the service again from the same vendor or even more importantly, a strong sense of opEmism that you would not only be heard, but the right correcEve acEon would soon be taken, you are not likely to waste your Eme. Let’s think of yet another scenario. You have just had dinner with your family at a restaurant and the owner/manager asks for your feedback. If you were to say bad, you would invariably be www.med-‐ium.com required to explain ‘why’. You be<er have really strong reasons! So you would choose to say bad, only when the services were r-‐e-‐a-‐l-‐l-‐y bad, else you would choose the safer opEon ‘ok’ or ‘good’.To make ma<ers worse, we Indians also tend to be extra polite and nice in these ma<ers the thought being ‘why hurt someone unnecessarily’. Let’s now get back to any hospital or diagnosEc centre. They all have lengthy service quality feedback forms with a lot of quesEons and innumerable boxes to be Ecked ranging from excellent to poor against each parameter. These are ﬁlled in by some of the paEents or their relaEves and then, analyzed. And we come across data, which says 92% of the paEents ﬁnd our services ok or good; the implicaEon being there are very few, who have complained.And that’s enough for everyone in the hospital to feel so-‐very-‐happy about the good service quality being delivered. The reality, I believe, is quite diﬀerent. Walk into any of the large corporate hospitals and simply sit in the lobby for a few minutes observing people around you. Most of them would look lost, panicked and helpless. If you probed a li<le deeper, you would realize that a key source of this feeling is -‐no one tells them anything about anything. They have very li<le idea about what is happening or will happen to their near and dear ones. In conjuncEon, the bill keeps on shooEng up! There are hundred other factors adding to the deep rooted sense of apathy and impersonal care. It could all be so diﬀerent! Almost everyone agrees that the healthcare business is largely driven by word of mouth and people ﬁnd that to be the most reliable source of informaEon while selecEng physicians or hospitals. It simply means that we need to focus on creaEng ambassadors or promoters of our brand. And no ‘saEsﬁed’ customer will do that. It requires someone to have a very diﬀerent level of paEent experience – a really caring, concerned and proacEve level of service and behavior from all the care givers-‐ from the surgeon to the security guard. It requires that such behavior is exhibited at every touch point and consistently, not just once in a while. And most importantly, it requires a very diﬀerent mindset and an inﬂexible a[tude towards paEent centricity. I maintain my opEmism that there would be those, who would see the wriEng on the wall and take a bold step to lead the path. That’s when a paEent will no longer be required to be paEent.
Medium is a healthcare consulEng ﬁrm. Our services include Business Strategy, MarkeEng & Sales, Quality & PaEent Experience, Performance TransformaEon, Healthcare Franchising. and Public Health. We are innovaEve, passionate and performance-‐driven. But, most of all, we are commi<ed to delivering signiﬁcant and tangible business impact for our clients. Our clients have ranged from large hospital chains and single-‐specialty hospitals to primary care clinics, medical equipment manufacturers and private equity. www.med-‐ium.com