Imagine yourself walking into a bank. Your heels tap across the tile floor, echoing with each step. You approach the teller, shielded from you by thick, bulletproof plexiglass. You explain the transaction and slip your paperwork across the cavernous countertop, along with the appropriate ID. The interaction is completed in a transactional manner, and you’re on your way.
Now contrast that to seeking assistance with caring for your mom at home. You wouldn’t want your experience to be as businesslike as depositing a check. Home care, as a highly personal service, requires a personal connection. Building a trusting relationship is key, and best achieved by incorporating warmth into every aspect of your services – from the moment a call comes into the office, through the entire duration of the client/agency relationship.
The Cool Approach to Care
If the person answering the phone for your agency is reading through a checklist of clinical questions, it’s time to rethink your inquiry management strategy. The last thing an overwhelmed, worried family member needs is to be drilled on a loved one’s height, weight, mental status, ability to “ambulate,” etc.
Warm It Up
Here are some simple steps you can take to begin to present a warmer impression to those in need of care:
- Tell your story. When it naturally fits into your conversation with the caller, briefly share your own personal experience: what compelled you to open your agency or choose home care as a career, how it felt when you needed help caring for your family member, what drives your passion to help seniors continue to live their best lives at home, and so on.
- Make it personal. The caller needs to know, without a shadow of doubt, that his or her family member will be treated as a unique individual, and never as a number or “case.” Use the older adult’s name in your conversation and build upon any personal details the caller may share about the care recipient, reinforcing their individualism. For instance, “With her love of baking, I have the perfect caregiver in mind for your Aunt Sheila. The two of them will have a ball in the kitchen together!”
- Emphasize quality. Invariably, the question, “What if we want a different caregiver?” will arise at some point. Reassure the caller that your care team is comprised of fully trained, caring professionals, and you will work hard to match a caregiver who will be a perfect fit. Let the caller know that your agency welcomes feedback at all times: positive feedback so that caregivers can be rewarded, as well as any problems, which will be promptly resolved.
Think through any way to thread empathy and compassion into each statement, reminding callers that you truly care about them and are dedicated to finding a solution to the challenges they are facing. And realize that a caring attitude is not only important during an inquiry call, but in every interaction thereafter. Your goal should be for your agency to be known as having a culture of warmth: to inquirers, clients, and caregiving staff alike.
At corecubed, we’re pleased to offer a virtual, 2-hour inquiry management training course to help your team hone skills such as these and improve client conversion and retention rates for your agency. Whether for just one person or your entire staff, our home care inquiry training session will help you better establish yourself as an expert in care solutions, effectively handle objections, and increase your conversion rate with optimal handling of inquiry calls.
Sign up for an inquiry management training session today! For additional sales and marketing strategies for home care agencies, call us any time at 800.370.6580 or contact us online and let us know how we can help.