Provide both exemplary veterinary care and customer care

Customer service is a phrase that we use too much with too little understanding of its true meaning to our practices.  The measure from which to look at customer service is outcome.  In every veterinary case there are two outcomes, the patient outcome and the client outcome.  In other words, you must manage both veterinary care (patient-focused) and customer care (customer-focused).  Our veterinary training prepared us to deliver the best possible patient outcomes.  Our veterinary education offered us very little, if any, training or experience in generating exemplary client outcomes.  In every veterinary practice, there is a letter somewhere from the owner of an animal that was euthanized.  The letter speaks of heartfelt thanks for the veterinarian and staff's empathy, respect, and kindness.  Let's look at those cases from the point of view of outcomes.  Put aside the reason for euthanasia and look at the patient outcome.  Not only is the patient dead but you actually killed it.  I'm not sure how a patient outcome could be worse.  In spite of that patient outcome, the veterinary clinic received a letter that you might consider fan mail.  The veterinarian delivered an amazing client outcome, because they focused on customer care in spite of the challenging circumstances with the patient.  The fact that virtually all veterinarians are able to deliver superb client outcomes in the face of horrific patient outcomes tells me that WE KNOW HOW TO DELIVER IT!  If we know how to deliver exemplary client outcomes, what keeps us from doing it every time we see a patient?  Veterinary excellence or patient outcome is an expectation, not an advantage.  Animal owners expect and demand excellent patient outcomes.  Excellent client outcome is a competitive advantage, because many veterinarians don't appreciate its value to their client.  Our bar is set quite low.  Service Thursday will lead you through the journey to consistently deliver outstanding client outcomes.

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