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Monday, June 17, 2024


What Will You Prefer, Heavy Financial Returns or Heavy Quality Healthcare Service? (5)


Friends out there reading this piece should not get me wrong. Everyone who sets up a business wants to make profit. The bigger the profit, the better. If a business does not make profit in the first year of its establishment, people may still accommodate it. They will say, let us wait till the second year, because people say that the first year is usually rough for new businesses. When the no-profit picture gets extended into the second year, it becomes a huge source of concern. Except one is into a business with very high gestation period, that is, it takes a long time before the idea is fully implemented, and you have to keep spending before you are ready to sell anything, nobody will be patient with your no-profit story.

What we are saying here is that businesses are set up to make profit and we all want to maximize that profit. Howeve, there are some businesse, if not all, where if you have high concern for profit than what you have for the customer, you will never see that profit. You can manipulate the customer once or twice to get money out of him due to sales hype. You can sugar-coat your mouth and tell him what he stands to gain if he patronizes you. But a day will come when the customer will see through your facade and come to terms with the real value he is getting from you. I related a story in one of our previous posts about a dental clinic in the United States who told a patient that he needed to have a dental procedure (a dental surgery) done to address the problem the patient had with his teeth. The patient would have agreed. However, because the bill was very high, the patient wanted to try another clinic, whether he would get a bill that he would be able to afford. Alas, at the second clinic, he was told that his case did not need any surgery and he was quickly attended to and was on his way home within a very short time, and was asked to pay a tiny fraction of what the first dentist charged him. This attitude of putting profit ahead of patient-centredness is killing the health care system everywhere, and the picture is terrible in a place like Nigeria. Medical errors litter the whole healthcare landscape. Profit is a reward of good service because, profit made in one transaction becomes a loss if you are not able to attract more patronage for what you do. If you offer good service and your customer is happy with you, he tells others about you and business keeps getting better and that is what you can call real profit, which comes from patronage sustained over time. This is better than wanting to take advantage of the customer all the time. You may not be able to see your business last beyond a short time. We just read about the huge profit declared by First Bank for the last financial year. The bank has remained so profitable over a lifespan of about one hundred and thirty years just because of its customer-centretedness. The bank has always been quick in reinventing itself over the years in an industry that is awash with casualties in terms of numerous failures. First Bank has played host as bankers to many generations of customers. The bank has a legendary high number of dormant accounts. These are accounts people had and their owners are long gone. These owners went to sleep due to the confidence they had in the bank that their money was safe. Now that that they are gone, their money is even still absolutely safe waiting for the right persons who have the mandate of the account owners to claim the money. This is running business with par-excellent reposed confidence. First Bank is not only absolutely safe for people who kept money there, people who bought its shares have been making money endlessly because the bank has one of the most consistent dividend payout history in Nigeria’s banking system.

Kola Owolabi is the Principal Consultant of Healing Balm Health Consult, a Healthcare Consultancy services organization involved in the training of healthcare practitioners, particularly on issues concerning putting in place quality improvement culture

To receive more information please text “SEND MORE INFO on your  Healthcare Short Courses and Quality Service Improvement Programmes”  by WhatsApp to  09031911326.

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