If you’re already an ImageFIRST customer, you know that we strive to deliver remarkably friendly, warm and engaged customer service—it’s what makes us different as a nationwide medical linen and laundry provider. From our streamlined services to our Customer Advocates who regularly go above and beyond their job responsibilities, our company mission and culture uphold our central values. One of our primary core values is being respectful, which we live every day by being courteous and kind to the medical staff we interact with.
We recognize that healthcare is one of the world’s toughest professions, but we see professionals doing their jobs with enthusiasm and grace no matter how much pressure they’re feeling. We have tremendous respect for each of our customers, from women’s health centers to outpatient cancer screening clinics to hospitals. Recently, we revisited a blog post by Paul Levy, former president and CEO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, that had some incredibly important points regarding respect. Namely, the blog addresses your response to “thank you” in the healthcare industry, and how that response has a serious impact on your customers.
Levy writes that, for years as a healthcare professional, his response to patients or others in the healthcare indsutry who thanked him was a casual, “No worries.” The intention was to communicate that the other person’s needs were not a burden—sounds fine, right? However, he argues, to imply that a service you’ve offered is “not a problem” or “nothing” is a missed opportunity for respect, empathy and communication. When someone says “thank you,” says Levy, they are offering gratitude, often in the context of being in a strange or even frightening environment. To imply that their gratitude is over “nothing” devalues that gratitude.
On the other hand, responding with something like “It’s my pleasure” or “I’m happy to help you” is a more appropriate and respectful response, says Levy. Such a response indicates an acknowledgment of the other person’s gratitude, and demonstrates that the person being thanked understands what the other is feelings. When Levy switched from saying “It’s nothing” to “It’s my pleasure,” he noticed an significant communication phenomenon: Whereas the former response usually ended a conversation, the latter opened it up, allowing Levy to learn even more about the experience of with whom he was speaking.
ImageFIRST is one of the largest national providers of healthcare linen and laundry service, and strives to take care of their customers’ linen and deliver convenient service so that customers can focus on what really matters: compassionate, excellent patient care. Our response to the customer who thank us every day is always a sincere, “It’s our pleasure.”
Learn more and contact ImageFIRST St. Louis at http://st-louis.imagefirst.com.