One of the frustrations we all have in the veterinary profession is getting owners to follow our recommendations. Today, pet owners can google any ailment their dog or cat may have, and who knows what they may find on the interweb.
How do you as their veterinarian compete with Dr. Google? You actually have a distinct advantage. Your advantage is by having a personal connection with them that even the best website is not capable of replicating.
What is the best way to connect with your clients? It is by understanding how they communicate and then communicating to them in that way.
You naturally connect with some people, and those people tend to be “wired” similarly to you. Those people you naturally connect to likely follow your recommendations more than the rest of your clients.
Say you naturally connect with 25% of your clients, but what about the other 75% of people who walk into your hospital each day? What are you doing to connect with them?
It is actually as simple as asking yourself (or your technician) two questions about your client.
Question 1- Are they extroverted or introverted?
- High D and High I are extroverted
- High S and High C are introverted
Question 2- Are they people or task oriented?
- High I and High S are people oriented
- High D and High C are task oriented
It does not take long to pick up on people’s tendencies when you start paying attention to them.
I encourage you to go back and review an earlier post about the DISC profile but here is a quick review.
There are 4 components of the DISC profile. Most people are dominant in one or two areas.
D- (Dominant) how you look at challenges and problems
I– (Influencing) how you like to interact with and influence people
S- (Stable) how you respond to pace and change
C- (Compliant)how well you follow rules and regulations
Since extroverts get all the love in the world, we are going to take the opposite approach and focus on the introverted clients first, and then next week we will focus on those out-spoken extroverts!
What do these introverts need from you?
Again, both the S and C are introverted, but you are going to need to connect with them very differently because the S is people focused while the C is task focused.
- They are looking for SECURITY
- Give them the facts
- Go slowly
- Provide them the assurances they need
- Assure them of the right decision
- Take a moment to make sure they know everyone’s name who is directly caring for their pet
- Follow up with them about their pet
- They are looking for INFORMATION
- They will have likely already researched their pet’s condition on Google
- Answer their questions with facts (not opinion)
- Be direct and friendly but not too personal
- Do not touch them
- Give them space
- Do not fear their skeptical nature
- Follow through on details about their pet’s condition
Are you ready to give this a try? Next week we will cover the other 2 behavior types, so hang on until then. But for those of you ready to get started- purposefully start asking yourself those two SIMPLE questions about each client you interact with, and see if you can start figuring out what makes them tick.