Do you know what a big responsibility it is for the person who answers the phones in a business?

Do you know what responsibility you have given the person who answers the phone in YOUR business.

In YOUR Dental Practice?


The person answering YOUR phones is responsible for:

  • Creating the best first impression so the person calling feels confident they have called the right Dental Practice.
  • Finding out the correct information so you can help the caller and make the correct appointment.
  • Scheduling an appointment based on the information given, that is suitable for the caller.
  • Ensuring the caller is committed to the appointment.
  • Creating urgency and concern for the treatment they need or may need.
  • Offering empathy and understanding.
  • Always working on reducing cancellations, reschedules and failure to attend appointments.
  • Following up on patients.
  • Scheduling further treatment and care.
  • Building rapport and long-term relationships with patients.

And the list goes on!

That very first conversation with a New Patient, or should I say, a prospective New Patient, is very often what I refer to as the “Make or Break Phone Conversation.”

The caller either likes what you say, or they don’t, for a number of reasons.

Your mission when answering the phone is to cut through what could be standing in the way of the caller, whether it is a suitable time, the cost of treatment or their fear!

One of the best ways to ensure a person calling your dental office, makes and confirms an appointment at the end of the call, is to ask the caller questions.

So, many people are calling Dental Practices right now and they are not being asked any questions, or very few questions.

What do you think about that?

It might be you! Do you ask callers enough questions?

What sort of questions do you ask? Are you asking the right questions?

So what sort of questions do you ask?

These are important questions to ask yourself.

But the most important first question to ask a caller is:

“Do you mind if I ask you a few questions so I can find out a bit more?”

At this point, early on in the phone call, you want the caller to say “YES”

Asking the caller for permission to ask questions, frames up the whole conversation.

When you ask this one question you can now ask more questions without seeming like you are just throwing questions at the caller.

Now keep in mind, when you are asking a question, make it one single question at a time. Keep your question simple and to the point.

Avoid a barrage of multiple questions. You never want a caller to be overwhelmed and have to think about answering too many questions at once.

A great question is one that opens-up the conversation and allows you to do the listening while the caller does most of the talking.

When the caller is talking, they are listening to their own words and their own words are very powerful.

While you are listening, you must take notes.

It is nearly impossible to remember everything a caller has said.

The notes you take on every call also allows you to paraphrase what the caller has said and you can check you have understood them correctly.

Taking notes also shows you are paying attention, you are listening and you are acknowledging the caller and what they are saying to you.

Some open questions you can ask:

“How may I help you?”

“Tell me more about that.”

“How do you feel about that?”

“What would you like to achieve……?”


Now keep in mind that asking questions MUST include the pause when you wait for the caller to think about your question and respond.

You want to listen to understand and not listen to reply.

This is why, I love taking notes while the caller is speaking. It forces you to listen and record what they are saying, and you are less likely to interrupt them.

OK it’s time for some homework or officework.

I get asked this question so often:

“What questions do I ask my patients?”

Some people on your team may be genius at asking questions and others not so good at asking questions.

Why not get everyone in your team to write down some of the open questions they ask callers on the phone right now.

Now put all of these great questions together so everyone can read through this list of questions.

This exercise is so helpful for people who get stuck on what to ask callers on the phone, and a great way to get everyone thinking more about the questions they ask.

Why not have a list of general questions to ask on the New Patient Call where you are collecting information.

You can also make a list of more specific questions to ask callers who are calling for specific treatment and care.

Let me know how you all go!


Call Tracking Excellence

With Call Tracking Excellence your team will learn the SAME exact processes Jayne used to:  

1. Dramatically improve new patient call-in conversions to booked appointments..

2. Retain existing patient appointments and

3. Prevent ongoing losses from appointment cancellations.


Click this link to find out how to get started. It’s that easy!


If you want to know about the Dental Phone Excellence System I developed over many years working in my own Dental Practice and the same System I now share with many Dental Teams, then give me a call or send me a quick email.

The teams I have worked with all say how much easier it is using the Dental Phone Excellence System, when they answer calls and how many more kept appointments they make and confirm for their patients.

1300 378 044 or


Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering system I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more, download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..




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