Remember as kids trying to see how many bumble bees you could catch in a jar before you panicked and they all got lose? You couldn’t get the top all the way on and all of a sudden dozens of bees exited the jar as you raced across the field of clover. That’s how customers are. You try and catch as many as you can, but once they get out it’s over. So, here we go again. Social networking. We’ll get there in a moment.
For those old enough to remember Ronald Regan, what are you able to recall about high school? If you’re like me, much of it is selective. The web seems to be changing some of that. Classmates.com. Facebook. Ever notice how there are no rules? Anyone can get to anyone else. Unhindered. Uninvited.
There are those who never grew up, and there are those who never grew older-there’s a difference. Sometimes it’s a good thing. Like for instance trading emails with the girl in the red velvet dress, the one with whom you first slow danced in the ninth grade. The Internet, pretty neat little thing.
Then there’s the other side to the social networking coin. A darker side. Unless you happened to be among the minutia of students who gamboled care freely down the crowded halls during those four years believing that the school year book should contain only your picture, graduating high school gave you your out, gave you permission to euphemistically bury the bourgeoisie characters who needed burying. People who, when you were eighteen wouldn’t put you out if you were on fire, the very people who probably set you ablaze, now knock digitally on your Facebook door asking to befriend you. Did I miss something here? The part where my Facebook-buddy-wannabe says, “Now that we’re grownup, forget I was a jerk in high school, ignore the fact that I was dumber than a bowl of mice”—sounds like I may have missed one or two of my twelve-step meetings. Recovery is progressing well—really.
Just because a hospital is paranoid doesn’t mean their patients don’t hate them. Poltergeists. The undead. The kind of like patients you’d hope you’d never hear from. And yet, those are the very ones who bother to write. They write, and blog, and YouTube your hospital. They deliberately come back and haunt. Their haunts are reflected in higher costs, fewer patients, and higher churn. Isn’t technology great?
Paul M. Roemer
Chief Imaginist, Healthcare IT Strategy
1475 Luna Drive, Downingtown, PA 19335
+1 (484) 885-6942