Bonnie Bonadeo My friend shared with me that she was going to have a cosmetic surgery done and needed someone to drive her to and from her appointment. I asked her about what she was having done and suggested I accompany her in her consultations and also be her designated driver the day she decided to do the surgery. So she set up the appointment and we went to fancy building downtown, were greeted nicely by the front staff and led to a private room in the back. We were told that “Brittney would be in shortly.” Brittney ,huh? Sounds young, we both said aloud and laughed at ourselves. Picturing a young gal with no sun damage no wrinkles and a shiny happy smile, what would she know about the vanity of aging? And we were correct. Brittney was young , pleasant and very professional as we laughed at ourselves in the mirror, talking about how time had slipped away along with our makeup for the day. She was knowledgeable and scripted to the final pricing conversation, and graciously left us alone to talk and soon came back ready to book the fountain of youth appointment by cash, credit cards or financing options. Small down payment and she books the next appointment with the doctor who is, of course, the best there is in the city.
Next step, the Doctor Consultation. A pretty coordinator takes us to the doctor’s office and she stands off to the corner engaging us in light conversation until Dr. Scrubs walk in. It’s a very quick introduction and his face is plastered in the medical file, firing one question after another at my friend, not once looking at her. I am watching this, amazed…and not in a good way. My friend is visibly nervous and having a hard time answering the questions. I bite my tongue for a long as I can and know my friend has been hijacked by his demeanor or lack of bedside manner. I begin to ask questions that we had discussed on the drive in and he shoots me a dirty look. He then comes over to my friend and without asking starts grabbing, shifting and moving her face and neck in a way that was intrusive. I could see in her eyes the fear of what was happening; she was having second thoughts. He did his fine print conversation about all the things that could go wrong, not once looking her in the eyes. He left the room so she could sign about 15 pages of information describing what could go wrong.
Now I understand he can’t make promises, and that liability and malpractice limits a doctor today from being human, but this is a volunteer cosmetic surgery, an incision of self-confidence, for goodness sakes! Just make her feel good for 30 seconds about her choice and the business you will be getting,not to mention the word of mouth, if she is happy with the results.
She decided to move forward and assumed the best docs don’t have to have personality just good credentials. And his credentials were impeccable but he had no emotional l intelligent skills.
And that is why I love hairdressers because you have to face the client, even backwards in the mirror, and you have to be personable and they begin to build trust in us and share their lives with us and we make them look and feel beautiful about themselves in about an hour or so!
Now here is my request: for the next week, instead of talking or consulting through the mirror turn the chair and face the client and connect with them in a way that no other industry does. Let me know if the experience is different for them and for you by doing that. Because remember …we are compassion!
P.S. My friend looks great and one day I may need a ride too, but I will find an Emotionally Intelligent, compassionate and technically savvy doc first.