Treating captive customers well

We are so used to being treated as strangers, as a cog in the wheel, that it’s almost a shock when it doesn’t happen. So, I am sitting in a medical specialists office reading the latest TIME magazine and there is Michael Moore talking about his newest film, Sicko. The interviewer says that he has glorified the Canadian health care system, which isn’t that great. What is s/he talking about? I’m sitting in a specialist’s office and I haven’t opened my wallet yet – not even for parking.

It gets better. The nurse that sits down with me is very personable and warm. I make a slight joke, she picks it up and we laugh. A few more personal words are shared. As she leaves the room she says, “Nice to have met you.”  I’m in shock. The waiting room is full of people and she sees them back-to-back all day. What a joy.

As I leave the office, I stand at the reception desk to change my appointment. The receptionist is busy filling out a form, so I wait with what I hope looks like patience. Without looking up I hear her say, “I want to acknowledge that I see you standing there, and I will be with you in just a second. First, I have to finish this up.” Wow again. Who has trained these people? This is great. They don’t have to be this nice and polite. In fact, they could treat me like dirt and I’d still have to be standing in this office hoping for service.

I am bowled over. And reminded that the smallest gestures (see earlier post) make all the difference. Have a nice day. 

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