CASE STUDY OF INEFFICIENT STAFF
A man with a fracture on his left leg got off a cab and entered a hospital for getting his plaster removed. He was walking with the help of a walker. When he reached the reception, it took him 30 minutes to get his prescription slip and reach the concerned room to get his plaster removed! And once that was done, he had a tough time to balance himself while walking. Somehow, he managed to find his way out of the hospital and to his transport medium.
What could the hospital have done?
- They could have offered the patient a wheel chair when he arrived at the hospital.
- Someone could have offered to help him with his prescription slip.
- The people from the hospital could have also maintained a special prescription window for such people so that they don’t have to suffer any distress while getting their slip.
- The administration could have offered to help him to the room where his plaster was to be removed.
- The administration could have also offered to get the cab for him.
- The hospital management could have appointed a special person to help such people in the department.
- The hospital could have also trained their normal staff to extend a helping hand to anyone who enters in a state of distress of any manner.
People often associate a hospital’s success with the number of cured patients and not about the experiences the patients and their families have during hospitalization.
However, what differentiates an average hospital from a good one or a great one is partly dependent on the track record of the doctors on board and how can they help the patients but a large part also depends upon on their experience.
What differentiates a good hospital from an average forms the basis for Brand Championship.
A Brand Champion is the one who truly and utterly believes in the brand values of the hospital and will do everything to propagate to increase the goodwill in the minds of people.
Whenever we talk of a brand, be it a hospital or a consumer product, we refer to the promises they make to the consumer. In the case of a hospital, we take into account their success rate and the overall experience of how empathetic their staff is. That’s why it becomes extremely important for every single staff member of the hospital to believe firmly in the mission, vision and philosophy of the organization. An integral part of this is a process called internal branding. This is where the belief and conviction to carry out the brand’s promises are instilled firmly in every single employee.
But being a Brand Champion is a holistic process that does not happen overnight. A strong orientation for a new recruit, regular motivation sessions for senior employees and a constant quality check are key components of the programmes. All the great hospitals today are not just based on the good medical services they provide but also their commitment to a patient’s wellness
Why is there a need for the brand manager?
- Quite often, hospitals make promises they find hard to fulfill. While they may, deliver excellent medical services, the most challenging area would be providing good hospitality services. More often than not, such below par services lead to loss of brand value.
That’s where it helps to have a professional on board. An efficient Brand Manager plays a pivotal role in resolving issues and raising the standards of a hospital by constant feedback from and interaction with patients and their families.
- Every hospital has a wide range of patients pouring in from different quarters of life. Therefore, it is undoubtedly a daunting task to live up to each one’s expectations. That’s where Brand Champions come into play. Creating brand value is an ongoing and constant process. It takes immense dedication on the part of every single employee from the house keeping to reception to guest relations departments to nursing staff and doctors.
Let’s take a look at some of the problems that the hospital might face and how they can be overcome:
There needs to be proper communication channels between the various levels of staff in the hospital. The importance of good communication system is often overlooked in many of the hospitals but let us understand the importance by the way of an example.
Like in the above stated case study, had there been good communication system, the whole process from the time the patient entered the hospital to the time he leaves, it would have been a pleasant experience for all concerned.
A system of good communication is not given due importance at the time of training. More importance is given to the hierarchical form of communication. But no importance is given to the informal form of communication which makes the formal communication even stronger and better. Informal communication in such instances will include the communications that happen between the staff members of the hospital and that not only includes the informal talks that happen between the members over lunch but also such talks which help in assisting the patients and providing them a better experience in the hospital.
The informal form of communication is so important because they tend to give a sense of belonging to the employees of the staff. Various studies have also recognized the importance of the informal and non-hierarchical form of communication in making the formal communication a success. In any organization, the superiors most often have to depend upon such forms to get their work done. And in a hospital, such forms of communication become all the more important especially when you are looking to improve your services and aim at providing better experiences to the patients present.
- Proper update on patient:
The staff should have a proper system of getting the updates about the patients. So that when some of the family members of the patient call, they are able to answer the family and the relatives properly. The concept of providing better services and experience does not and should not only limit to the patient itself but should also be extended to the family of the patient and hence it is of utmost importance that the concerned staff of the hospital should be updated on the patient’s progress or should be able to guide the family properly.
- Know about the doctor's schedule:
The doctor’s schedule should also be known to the staff concerned. This will help in making the experience of the patient and the family even more relaxed. Just think of it this way, that the patient and the family is already distressed about the health of the patient and the inconvenience they have to face and to top it all off, they can’t speak to the doctor about the progress of the patient because the staff on call does not know about the schedule of the doctor.
Minor details make a major difference in creating a brand value and Brand Champions are the messengers in that path.