I often complain too much. Just to remind myself that all is not bad with the world, I thought I'd share an awesome user experience I had today.
Today I had a dental appointment at a new (to me) dentist, Les Miller, DDS. I had already been there once before with Megan where they worked her in with just a few hours notice as a new patient for an emergency consult. I was extremely impressed with their operation as an observer, but today I got to experience it from the end-user perspective.
I had some paperwork to fill out, so I showed up about 15 minutes early. As soon as I walked through the door the x-ray tech greeted me and told me to come on back and we could get those started. No looking at the clock and waiting until the last possible minute to help me. When was the last time you got in early to see anyone in the medical industry? Once we finished up the x-rays, the dental hygienist was ready and got me right in. Turns out I've taken a little too long since the last time I was in, so she recommended a slightly different course of action than the standard cleaning to get my mouth from 95% back up to 100%.
Here's what was different from how it could have gone. The dentist has you stuck, essentially. At this point all the dental hygienist has to tell me is "we've got to do X" and most people—well, at least I'm going to go along. She's the expert. I'm coming to her for a service. If she tells me we need to do something, well, we need to do. Instead of taking that approach though, she walked me through the entire process, then went over the options right along with what she recommended.
She involved me in the process by engaging in a conversation rather than just telling me. The flip side of this is now I bare some responsibility for my choice. Since a conversation works two-ways, I've got to keep up my end to make sure we get to my desired outcome.
Those extra ten minutes invested today will pay off though. They got an active participant which will help ensure a positive outcome and a walking, talking advertisement. Because my UX was so good, I'll definitely be recommending them to anyone I know in the area who needs a dentist. And here you though UX was all about software. :-)