To Err Is Human: To Admit Err is Good Business

I am not perfect. You are not perfect. That's why I like you. We are human, we make mistakes, and that's OK. If everything and everyone was perfect, we'’d all be bored. As opticians, we wear many, many hats; dispenser, manager, scheduler, tech, buyer, marketer, educator, therapist, janitor, etc. At times, we are very, very good at doing all of these things, all at once. Other times, things are missed and errors are made. Sometimes we forget lens add-ons, we record incorrect measurements, we order the wrong frame color or make promises we can't fulfill. I have learned from some mistakes in my office that sometimes the way you handle a mistake speaks more than the mistake itself. If you are transparent and open with your customer about any issues that may have come up, they will be more willing to work with you to get the problem resolved. I have developed some strategies to minimize the consequences of when things go awry. You must first ADMIT THE MISTAKE. Admit it to yourself, admit it to your patient. Make sure you APOLOGIZE, a simple apology will go along way. Don't over do it, over apologizing could cause patients to lose confidence in you and your office. Then MAKE A PLAN for correcting the mistake, make a plan to prevent future mistakes. Whatever you do, DON'T ASSIGN BLAME. We are in this together, if one person makes a mistake, it reflects on the whole office. We want the customer to trust us, we want them to come back. If we play the blame game, they are more likely to go elsewhere for eyecare services. Lastly, LEARN from the mistake. A mistake can be made into a good thing if you learn from it.