Updated: Mar 5, 2019
Masterminds, let's talk about scripting! Do YOU use it? Scripting is one of the most powerful tools to help your orthodontic practice succeed, retain and maintain happy patients, explain treatment and to start more new patients. Scripting is supplying staff with effective dialogues to engage with patients for a positive outcome.
Michelle Shimmin recommends #scripting for ALL areas within the orthodontic practice, from educating on a new treatment product or service, to scheduling a family member for a NP exam, asking for an online review, capitalizing on patients with second opinions or ways to improve the delinquent accounts.
For example, do you deal with habitual late patients, or patients who reschedule often with expectations of being seen when they want? Removing key phrases like "the doctor isn't here" or "we don't see patients on that day" can be the first step to a powerful way for your front desk to communicate (and educate) your patients about the schedule availability.
Here are some tips on how you can develop your own orthodontic office scripts:
Determine key areas of concern in your practice. This will guide you in developing scripts. Also ask your staff if they ever feel at a loss for words when discussing certain topics with patients because they may not feel adequately knowledgeable. A script about these subjects will greatly benefit them.
Consider the most frequent patient interaction experiences. What objections or questions will patients have? Determine what dialogue will encourage patients to take the next step: making the appointment, scheduling treatment, or committing to a payment plan. When creating scripts you should tailor them to reflect your core values and practice culture.
Keep your scripts accessible for all team members. When all staff members are on the same page as you and are consistently repeating the same scripts to patients, it reinforces you as the orthodontist and expert in the eyes of the patient.
You only get one chance to make a first impression. Scripting your approach is similar to performing in front of a live audience. Every great actor or actress has a script that he or she commits to memory, and embodies it, so there is real honesty in the every performance. Your clients are your audience. So create some scripts for each position in the office and start testing them out. Practice, practice, and more practice role playing these scripting scenarios as a team! You'll quickly find your scripts become an easy and natural part of your teams vocabulary and office culture.