The Moments of Truth. This was coined by the President of SAS [Scandinivian] airlines about two decades ago. The airlines was on verge closing down when he took over. He stressed that there are many moments in the the interaction of the customer with the airline, where the customer made an impression about SAS. These moments would be either ‘bright’ or ‘dull.’ For example if the boarding pass is given after an avoidable delay, it is a dull moment of truth. If the ground staff person goes out if its way to help a passenger load his bags on the trolly, it is a bright moment. SAS estimated that there would be around 50000 moments of truth in a journey for a single passenger. How bright the SAS staff makes these moments for the customers will directly affect the satisfaction of the customers.
A hospital is no different. If we look closely there can be thousands such moments where a customer will make a good or a bad impression about the hospital. How well the hospital manages those moments will directly impact the overall satisfaction levels of the customers. One thing that instantly comes to mind is that the entire staff of the hospital has to be committed to providing bright moments of truth. The management can not be present at the service delivery point all the time to ensure that the staff is doing a great job. The challenge here is to inspire the entire staff to willingly and happily create these moments for the customers.
Some example of dull moment are:
Some bright moments may include:
Creating these moments is a matter of organisational culture. To develop such culture takes passion and time on part of the top management. But if it is done once it can be provide an unsurpassable advantage to the hospital.
I think it will be a worthwhile exercise to list down various bright moments that your hospital can create for its customers in each department. I suggest you take this exercise on for this month and see what the results are.
Healthcare Marketing Consultant
Sai Mahima Hospital, Ram Nagar,
Dharamshala H.P. 176215