Your Success Thought on "Professionalism"
August 31, 2005

I left a health practitioner's office yesterday noticing how great I felt. Where was this feeling coming from? Was it generated by the good news she gave me, her specific treatment, the confidence I had in her? Yes, and there was more. What was it?

In a time where I hear complaints about everything that walks, talks, blows or flows, it was refreshing to feel so good about the professional with whom I was dealing. What did she do to create this sensation? How did she solicit my eagerness to refer others to her?

Ah ha, isn’t that what we all want? To make others feel great about what we offer and to have referrals generated as a direct result? I believe the key to be quite simple. It's called professionalism. While not rocket science, people who are truly professional are not only rare; they are appreciated and remembered.

The concept of ‘professionalism’ is bit slippery. Everyone considers themselves to be 'professional' in a manner that suits them that day. From the e-mails you send me I have no doubt my readers are at the top of their game in this area. Yet we all have room for improvement!

At the end of the day how many true professionals have you come across? This is the kind of individual who stays in your memory long after your interaction. I pondered my feeling of complete satisfaction with Dr. R’s level of professionalism. What did she do or say to make herself stand out? The following insight came to me:

  • Whenever I phone her, my call is returned in a matter of minutes.
  • She is genuinely happy to see me upon my arrival at her office.
  • She never keeps me waiting, honoring my time as well as hers.
  • She is completely focused on me; not rushing to or seemingly even conscious of her next appointment.
  • My questions are safe with her, never too silly. They are always answered with respect and patience.
  • She is curious, thorough and asks great questions, enhancing my trust.
  • Her environment is warm, calm and uncluttered which expresses her interest in her patient’s comfort level.
  • She confidently lays out our next steps, her responsibilities and mine.
  • I leave with a feeling of completion and direction, no unanswered questions.

Dr. R's professionalism foundation is based on two factors: 1) she's intelligent enough to know what her 'due diligence' for ultimate patient satisfaction is and has taken the time to create it in an authentic manner, and 2) she's wise enough to care more about her patient's experience than her own. She's learned to let go of her ego.

Which of the above statements of professional behavior are true about you? How do your clients truly feel when they leave you. You might say: “They come back, so must be satisfied!" Believe me there are many levels of satisfaction.

Professionalism makes all the difference. Know what your clients desire. How easy do you make it for them to get in touch with you? Do you respond to them the same they contact you? How sensitively do you treat their concerns, questions or fears? Do they feel safe with you? How do you validate their importance to you?

What physical environment do you provide for your clients? What do your written materials say about you? How do you communicate your skills and that you care? What evidence do they have that you are the best person to deal with for their particular need? What makes them want to come back to you?

This week please notice the many subtle ways you communicate your professionalism. Ask for feedback. You may be surprised at how the little things count. Learn from Dr. R and make those whom you deal with feel ‘great’ when they leave you!

Enjoy your discoveries and have a professionally stimulating week!

Ann Golden Eglé, PCC, CPCC
Executive Coach & President
Golden Visions Success Coaching, LLC

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Permission is granted to either reproduce copy or distribute "Your Success Thought for the Week of August 17, 2005" so long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author is attached. The author is Ann Golden Eglé, Golden Visions Success Coaching, LLC, 541.385.8887, 1972 NE 3rd St, Suite # 307 Bend, Oregon 97701, www.GVSuccess.com

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