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Use the following discount codes to get the members' price:
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This Week's Business Tip…
Consider Implications of Extending Courtesies
Providing excellent customer service is a cornerstone of successful business. Simple courtesies like returning phone calls or brief emails within an hour, and completing reports and other paperwork promptly on behalf of your clients, go a long way in communicating that you care. In turn, satisfied clients often recommend you to their family and friends.
Making small accommodations for clients is another way to provide excellent customer service. For example, if you normally charge a fee for late cancellations, you might make an exception in certain circumstances. Or, you might agree to meet with a current client on a one time basis outside of your normal office hours, to help the person deal with a pressing issue.
At the same, however, it's important to be mindful of how you feel - both now and in the future - when making such accommodations. At the point when you start feeling taken advantage of, you risk losing objectivity - which can render you less effective clinically.
You can minimize the chance of this happening by anticipating the short-term and longer-term consequences of making accommodations, vs not doing so.
1. A prospective client says, "I'd like to start therapy. I don't have insurance, and can pay your full fee. But I travel during the week, and can only come on Friday evenings after 7 pm."
2. A prospective client laments, "My cardiologist strongly recommended that I see you. But you don't participate with my insurance, and I can only afford $25 a session. Oh, and by the way, I need an evening appointment."
3. A current client asks, "I was just too depressed over my breakup to go to work yesterday. And because I've missed so many days, they now they say I need a doctor's excuse. Will you write a letter, and can I pick it up this afternoon?"
On the one hand, you understand how upsetting it is to go through a breakup. On the other hand, this client has a pattern of finding herself in the midst of a crisis. If you refuse to write an excuse letter, she might get angry. And then she might post negative online reviews about your practice.
In addition, there are ethical issues to consider when writing such a letter, which may have long-term implications, for both you and the client.
Being flexible and accommodating in response to requests from clients and referral sources is often good for business.
However, before saying yes, consider the potential financial and ethical implications, and the degree to which you might feel taken advantage of in the long run.