There Is No Customer Service Department

I’ve been reading a book over the past three days that I highly recommend to any and every small business owner.

It’s such a good book and such a good read that I have not been able to put the book down.

The book is called ReWork: Change the Way You Work Forever and it’s written by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, the Founders of 37signals.

I highly recommend this book and I also recommend subscribing to their blog, Signal vs. Noise.

One section, which I’ve highlighted and copied below, is applicable to all businesses and to all sections of business.

I particularly like the section’s viewpoint with regard to marketing. As I was reading this section I could not help but relate it back to Customer Service.

It’s as relevant to Customer Service as it is to Marketing.

Because Customer Service is Marketing.

Serving the Customer, making their visit to your Office, to your website, to your Business a memorable *EXPERIENCE*, is indeed *THE BEST* way of marketing your business.

Because if people like what you do for them, if they love the way you make them feel when they visit your business, they will become advocates, raving advocates for whatever it is you have to sell.

In Dentistry, and in all businesses, there’s a belief out there that Customer Service is *NOT* the responsibility of every employee.

There’s the belief that Customer Service is only the responsibility of *SOME* employees and not all.

And that’s wrong.


Customer Service is the responsibility of every employee.

It’s everywhere.

Customer Service is everywhere.

And its presence and existence needs to be addressed at all times by everybody working in your organisation.

Nobody in your organisation is exempt.

Everyone must know, as my friend Shep Hyken says, that they are employed to do two things: To do the job that they’ve been hired to do and to look after the needs of the customers of that business.

No matter what those needs may be.

When we compartmentalise our Dental Office, and allow employees to opt out of Customer Service and to opt out of Marketing the business to every client, customer and patient, then we allow those employees to figuratively start tearing up greenbacks.

Dollars that belong to our office.

Because by their actions of selectively opting out of Customer Service, they’ve basically begun to say to the world that they are going to selectively start ignoring the customers.

Sometimes this act of ignoring is simply because the employees involved have not been trained and educated in the necessity of being Customer focused.

It’s not that they choose not to be attentive to the customer.

It’s that they simply haven’t been educated and trained to be alert to the benefits of providing the customer, the patient, with an experience that’s more than they would ever have expected!

So as you read the book excerpt below, when you see the word “marketing”, make sure you see the words “Customer Service” there as well.

Marketing is not a department

Do you have a marketing department? If not, good. If you do, don’t think these are the only people responsible for marketing. Accounting is a department. Marketing isn’t. Marketing is something everyone in your company is doing 24/7/365. 

Just as you cannot not communicate, you cannot not market: 

  • Every time you answer the phone, it’s marketing. 
  • Every time you send an e-mail, it’s marketing. 
  • Every time someone uses your product, it’s marketing. 
  • Every word you write on your Web site is marketing. 
  • If you build software, every error message is marketing. 
  • If you’re in the restaurant business, the after-dinner mint is marketing. 
  • If you’re in the retail business, the checkout counter is marketing. 
  • If you’re in a service business, your invoice is marketing.

Recognize that all these little things are more important than choosing which piece of swag to throw into a conference goodie bag. Marketing isn’t just a few individual events. It’s the sum total of everything you do.”

Customer Service in Dentistry is not just a few individual events.

Customer Service, in every business, is the Sum Total of Everything we do.


The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

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