Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Prime numbers at the dental office.

1,2,3,7, and 13.

The kaizen given to me by Dr. Goldsmith’s office worked beautifully. They told me to set my appt. up first thing in the morning to reduce the wait time to be seen. I took their recommendation as well as taking my timing device and recorded each process step and rounded up to the nearest minute. Here is what I measured:

Arrival time: 7:35AM ( I must confess that I was 5 minutes late!)
Lounge wait time: 1 minute
Dental chair seating and Xray: 3 minutes
Wait to see dentist: 2 minutes
Root canal evaluation time: 7 minutes
Departure time: 7:48PM
Door to door turnaround time: 13 minutes

I was thrilled at the improvement and reduction in wait time and very pleased at the service I received. Both the assistant and Dr. Goldsmith set the appropriate time expectations and were very professional. One reason that I see that kaizen, or continuous improvement, works so well is that it embodies the value of humility. A proud person might complain or be rude in an effort to get better service instead of humbling themselves to ask the person who schedules appointments for help. In this case, I engaged myself, the expert of my own customer service expectations, and the office scheduler Jara, an expert at scheduling patients, to achieve an improvement of reducing wait times. Working together, we made it better.

I am so grateful for their collaboration to improve.

Dan Lafever, Kaizeneer

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