Facing the thrown down gauntlet
Fear. In private healthcare, it’s everywhere I look.
Customers fear the product itself. When considering a procedure, they take an incredible amount of time to even pluck up the courage to make a telephone enquiry about it, let alone book a consultation for it.
The initial calls themselves are festivals of fear.
Enquiry handlers fear the courage required to reveal what callers want and need. They overload callers with information, instead of asking questions to reveal their emotions and desires. They don’t answer objections, because they fear confrontation. Callers fear being sold to, keeping their cards close to their chest and basing their choices on price, which is all they’ve allowed themselves to know.
Marketers fear selling value, opting instead lower prices so they don’t have to sell as much. They fear losing business by niching. They fear competitive complaints, watering down their claims to meaningless platitudes.
Management fears sticking its neck out, abdicating the conduct of consultations to doctors and technicians. When the numbers don’t add up, they fear making those responsible accountable for their performance.
Doctors fear selling. They mishandle consultations, resisting the notion that they could do something differently. They fear what their colleagues might think of them, mistakenly believing that “selling” is not professional. They are seldom aware that training for professionally selling healthcare services even exists, and when they learn it does, they fear that too.
Successful private healthcare business leaders break the fear cycle. They dare to step into the fray of the unknown. They open their minds and reconsider old habits that they cling to as “the only way”. They make themselves vulnerable novices and make the effort to learn something new. They face the thrown-down gauntlet, fix what’s broken, and come out the other side challenged, better and braver than they went in.