This past week, the American government shutdown. 
President Trump couldn’t get a deal done.
The Republicans couldn’t get a deal done.
The Democrats couldn’t get a deal done.
Everyone blames the other. All the while, military and other essential employees went to work and didn’t get paid. Thankfully, a three-week bill passed for all the parties to try it again.
All the while, you have an eye practice to run. Certainly, some of your patients are not thinking about an eye exam, as either they or their loved ones have been affected by the shutdown. But no matter, everyone is a bit anxious about spending money. Worries are high, and when your patients do come in, they might be hesitant to spend any money.
How you handle this situation is crucial for your practice, so here are a couple of tips for you and your staff.
Don’t Take Sides: No matter your political affiliation, you will gain nothing by criticizing the president or either party to your patients. Have your opinions. Be passionate. Keep them to yourself. Instruct your employees to do the same. Nothing would be worse than assuming a patient’s affiliation or opinion. Again, your opinion on these things matter, but eye care is about eye care…not winning a political argument.
Be Compassionate: Again, no matter whose fault you think all of this is, be compassionate on those hurting. If a patient is struggling or has family struggling, the only response is compassion. Anything else comes across as insensitive, or again, taking a political side.
Assure Your Patients: If cost comes up, remind your patients that you offer eye care and eyewear that are quality and as affordable as possible. Assure them that you are for them in both areas.
Hopefully, this political mess will end soon. Until then, be active in training your staff how to talk about it before you lose a patient.
Gordon Duncan/ProSight Success
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Gordon Duncan is an award-winning educator, salesman, teacher, manager, and writer. He has taught in the public school system, lobbied for school's accreditation, managed eye clinics, led sales' teams, and also publishes books on theology, church, and culture.