Physicians’ Reputation- do you encourage positive reviews from patients?

Our finding shows that most doctors worry about negative reviews posted about them on review websites. Physicians’ know that it’s just the mouthing off unhappy patients. Review website often doesn’t take the responsibility to ascertain the negative reviews are baseless and fictional. For example In one case we found a “review” that was demeaning beyond belief, the so-called patient was an ex- girlfriend of that physician and she had a personal agenda in doing so. But not everybody will realize the quality of such information and the significant impact it has on the physician. Continue reading “Physicians’ Reputation- do you encourage positive reviews from patients?”

Doctor, Doctor – I Found A Picture Of You Drunk And Now I Don’t Want Surgery.

There’s one of two reasons you’re not laughing at the moment. Most commonly it’ll be because the joke wasn’t funny. Then you have the group of doctors who’ve just realised that the pictures they posted of last year’s New Years party might well cost them clients.

Continue reading “Doctor, Doctor – I Found A Picture Of You Drunk And Now I Don’t Want Surgery.”

Policlinico Hospital’s Doctors Brawl Over Woman In Labour

A hospital in Italy has been left reeling as two of it’s top doctors broke out in a fight whilst attending to a woman in labour.

Sicilian residents must be left wondering who they can trust after gynaecologist Antonio De Vivo and duty obstetrician Vincenzo Benedetto broke out into a fight after arguing over the need for a caesarean as Laura Salpietro went into labour last week. It’s reported that De Vivo, having had his collar grabbed, put his first through a glass window in the heat of what was an extremely unprofessional punchup.

Mother Laura Salpietro and newborn son Antonio have both been left in intensive care after their horrible ordeal with the Italian hospital. The incident has sparked four separate investigations, from the hospital authorities, a local prosecutor, the regional health authority and the ministry of health in Rome. Meanwhile, the gynaecologist De Vivo said simply “I merely say that in this matter I am the wronged party and I was attacked.” I think it’s fair to say that there are two clear victims in all of this, and the doctor ranks as neither.

Italy has one of the lowest maternal mortality rates in the world, but incidents like this aren’t about to help this hospital’s reputation at all. News of such barbarity is likely to cast a shadow of doubt over the sanctity of Sicilian healthcare, despite the two doctors both being suspended last Thursday. People come to hospitals mostly at times of intense vulnerability, and we like to feel assured that we’re placing ourselves in good hands. Women especially feel most vulnerable during childbirth, and the actions of these doctors wont be putting any minds at ease any time soon.

The reputation of hospitals are their life blood. They need people to be able to put their trust in them, and to come to them with their ailments. Should the bond of trust be broken, and the faith destroyed, then patients will think twice before using their facilities.

Like the doctors in question, judgement is currently suspended on Policlinico Hospital’s reputation. For an establishment that bases it’s entire business on life and death decisions, is there any room for uncertainty?

Ryanair – brand and reputation enigma

Ryanair is one of the most popular airlines in the world. It certainly flies more people than any other airline in the world. It is also one of the world’s most unpopular airlines judging by surveys of passengers. What’s going on?

Ryanair was not the pioneer of budget airlines, but it has been the most aggressive purveyor of the technique and perhaps the most famous example of the type, outstripping rivals like Easyjet. It has build its budget philosophy around low cost rather than cheap and in being upfront about what you are paying for. They pioneered the technique of charging taxes separately to highlight what the cost of taxes is and in the form of Michael O’Leary they have a voluble and cheeky CEO on whom few critics have landed a punch.

In the past few years the Ryanair story seems to have darkened as their business model is increasingly driven by extras that enable them to continue to advertise cheap flights and yet still charge passengers a lot more via online check-in charges, payment processing charges. It would seem as though the costs of providing the services have been squeezed out and now they are seeking to have their cake and eat it. Advertise low fares but charge the customer a lot more.

Their customer service philosophy is different and highly O’Learyesque – don’t delight or even please customers: just get them there cheaply and on time.  It is airline travel as commodity service rather than high value service.

The problem for the Ryanair reputation is this: they are losing their reputation for being low price. They may continue to proclaim, “we are lost cost”, but increasingly for customers the experience of being double charged for one payment, having to pay for checking-in calls that into question. A straw poll of my friends revealed that none were happy with Ryanair.

  • all felt that some charges were deliberately exploitative of customers.
  • Ryanair staff were rude and that the system was designed to confuse and punish customer mistakes.
  • None would fly Ryanair by choice, only because they were the only airline flying to a particular destination.

They do not mind paying for food or baggage. They don’t mind queuing for seats and they don’t mind having to check-in online.

Ryanair portray themselves as an engine to drive down costs, but the accounts reveal that profitability is really about advertising low fares and then charging as much again on top. As more and more customers recognise and discuss this, one senses that the Ryanair brand will be associated with being a cheat.

The Ryanair strategy on reputation management is strike first and offer a withering character assessment of the critic. Increasingly it does not wash with customers. Ryanair will need to look more carefully at how it charges as rival operators exploit the Ryanair reputation gap. For Easyjet, this represents a huge opportunity if they can continue to drive out costs but deliver an honest service and establish themselves as customer champions.

Who is Responsible for Reputation

Most commentators are agreed that reputation is a company’s single most important long-term asset,  so you would suppose that if you phoned a company and asked for the person responsible for managing their reputation they would know who to put you through to. Not a chance. Ask for brand manager, sales director, PR wonk, bills payable and you are through (usually to an answerphone). Ask a receptionist for the Reputation Manager and they are stymied.

In truth, it is really only the business theorists who worry about reputations, within the company there is no evangelist or guardian for reputation. Companies are generally much more obsessed with their brands, and in the case of large companies whole directorates exist to police this entity. Directorates flanked by asinine designers and mid-level liberal arts graduates and a separate and expensive cohort of lawyers.

Some companies might argue that this is the responsibility of the CEO, but few chief executives spend time or have metrics for assessing and tracking the reputation performance of a company. The absence of metrics may be what make reputation management unloved: it is just too metaphysical for any jock manager to be able to get their heads around. I mean, nobody built a reputation around being a reputation manager in the way they do as brand director.

You could make an argument that reputation is an output of a company and in some sense not measurable, but then so is profit and every analyst in the world looks at that.

One of the issues facing a reputation manager is that reputation as a concept is seen as related to brand management and is subsumed with that “discipline”. This is a shame as brand management tends in practice to have a narrow view of the business and rarely considers how reputation is changing across time and in intensity. Brand managers also see reputation as a function of brand – look after the brand and the reputation will after itself. How wrong: you can rebrand but you cannot rerepute – in fact does not even exist. Yet rebranding is so often an attempt to fix broken reputations rather than broken brands per se.  As a builder would say: you can’t paint a wall falling down!

Companies need to get serious about their reputation and the discipline of reputation management. They need to establish some tracking and they need to separate it out from brand management or public relations. All the activities of the enterprise impact upon reputation – what other people think about you.  A truly great reputation is an oak forest – it takes a long time to grow but is difficult to cut down. You can lose a tree but it does not end the forest.

Doctors Reputation Management

The speedy and easy publication procedure that is now available to nearly every Internet user is, without doubt, a distinct and powerful double-edged sword. When used properly, self-promotion of your specialistic physician practice is both accomplishable and effectual. Yet, this “click of a mouse” publishing can also hinder your practice useless if leveraged maliciously by unhappy clients or wrong competitors. If the latter of these situations has happened to your name or your medical practice, or even if you fear that it may happen to you in the near-future, there are high-level steps that you can take as a physician to prevent and reverse such time of life tactics on the digital landscape. Physician Reputation Management can protect your specialized medical practice while at the same time raising positive brand awareness and market presence.

It is of utmost importance that you as a specialized physician allow a large typical sample of your patients dictate the objective feedback about your procedures and their experiences with your medical practice. By creating controlled and open forums of communication, specialized physicians can take a preventative approach to depot  bang-up feedback and reputation rather than waiting for a single unhappy anomalousness to spread false information about your medical services.