As my wife was meeting with her chemo doctor (oncologist) I was thinking about his strong communication skills he has that made me think about this blog I am writing here today.
1. When my oncologist meets with Kim he always greets her immediately with a huge and I mean HUGE smile and a warm handshake. I don’t know his nationality as he has a strong accent but the physical and visual approach he has right from his first 20 seconds makes you happy too, no matter how much pain you may be in at the moment... I was just thinking how they tell us that first 30 seconds of that job interview makes or breaks you getting that job, well I see it and feel it here.
2. He starts off on "how are you doing today" and tells you what he sees. I.e. "You look wonderful", or "you look worried". He will tend to say it in the same sentence or pause first to hear what we have to say. But he receives and gives both sides. He does not hold back.
3. Now this one is my big one. When I, the husband tell him what I see, I tend to throw my theory into what I think is going on. “I think her pain medication is really blocking feeling she has in her hand”, or something like. “I think when we changed pharmacies, the chemo seems like it is not formulated the same.. Can that be why she is getting sick now?” The doctor will pause and listen to all I have to say without interruption (and man, I have interrupted him a lot) and then tell me what he thinks professionally from his practice, research and education. He tells me that it was not a “bad idea/guess/theory” even if I may be on or way off. I feel I am part of that team, part of that practice. I don’t feel degraded laughed at or just being a crazy old fool, my thoughts are valued.
4. He responds with a careful, safe bet, yet aggressive approach to help treat my wife’s cancer and at the same time, keep her comfortable and have a positive quality of life. He gives us that action plan and checks to make sure we heard it correctly and if we have questions or concerns he answers them right then with words that we understand. And then he has his nurse run through it one more time after he leaves the room.
5. Finally as he leaves he gives us that same powerful smile and warm handshake.
Do you wish you had that doctor? You want to call me and get his number, don’t you? Jealous? Think “man you two are so blessed to have him”
I think these communication skills resulted in us being so comfortable having him even when I have doubts that he is not doing enough or not trying... something new or different when I think he should … I keep coming back to his demeanor, his social approach that continues to bring me back to trusting him, relying in him and believing in him. Is that not what we should be communicating to our clients and customers? I see it being almost addicting to the client and customer when someone does this, you can’t stop but come back to that same person. You are comfortable, relieved, relaxed with that person being on your side, on your team, and perhaps in your friendship / companionship in other parts of your life.
So I ask you, do you have that approach with your clients? Have you seen that and felt it yourself? Isn’t it a good/great thing to be around? And finally don’t you think you should have that approach with all your clients and customers no matter their personality or mood? Let alone with all those you come in contact with in your lives? I think you can achieve much greater accomplishments and feel recharged and appreciated through this. If you are not already doing this, boy you should give it a try, I think it will put you (and those around you) on a cloud of comfort and trust.