Patients can better appreciate what you do for them when you let them know that you support an eye care charity and encourage them to support you in the good cause.
Helping those in need through an optical charity is a phenomenal way to boost your pride in your what you do, and focus your attention on the role of customer service.
I know this because before joining OneSight, a family of vision care charities dedicated to healthy vision, eyewear and sun protection, I was an optician at LensCrafters. Luxottica, the parent company of LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, Sears Optical and Target Optical is the charity’s main sponsor. OneSight hosts a number of global and regional optical clinics each year to help those in need around the world and here at home. I was thrilled to attend my first clinic to Mexico in 1997. When I returned I was more invigorated than ever to work with patients and my enthusiasm showed. I was proud of the great work being done through clinics and was happy to share this information with patients. In many cases, patients were touched by OneSight’s mission and wanted to get involved.
I also know the power of this experience because since joining OneSight, I’ve been fortunate to lead or participate in 50 charitable clinics from India to Africa to cities across North America. I’ve met thousands of talented and passionate opticians, optometrists, ophthalmologists, optometric assistants and laboratory personnel along the way. Almost without exception, all have shared with me the same kind of resulting customer-focused enthusiasm that I experienced.
Whether or not you ever serve those in need abroad or in North America through OneSight, you’ll want to consider the benefits of adopting a charity in your practice. When you do so, you have another way of telling patients that you care about them because you care about those who cannot afford or do not have access to vision care and eyewear.
Janet Duke in Tunisia with OneSight clinic patient wearing her first pair of eyeglasses.
Whether it’s collecting old eyeglasses for the Lion’s Club, a local community or church organization or any number of international eye care charities, your first dose of appreciation will come from these groups who will be happy to hear from you. In turn, they’ll be happy to provide your office with information that positively identifies your office as one of its caring volunteers.
But don’t just stop there. Invite your patients to get involved! All you have to do is ask – and let them know how. If you're collecting eyewear, ask them to consider donating an old pair that is sitting in a drawer at home. You will then have another reason to say “Thank you” to your patients and another way to make a connection. What makes you feel good also makes your patients feel good. Spread the good feelings by supporting an eye care charity and inviting your patients to do the same.
Janet Duke is senior manager of global operations for Mason, OH-based OneSight – www.onesight.org.