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We are often constrained by habitual thought. It happened to me when I started my community liaison job. As a community liaison, I solicit the in-home health service for the homebound patients whom doctors authorize nurses’ visits for them. Every day I would follow the schedule that I had planned the night before. In theory, the more doctors I visited, the more success I would have. I listed several doctors in my planner every day – my goal was to visit all of them. Unfortunately, sometimes I did not have an opportunity to see any doctors.
After those incidences, I knew that I had to have a different strategy in order to be successful for marketing. I decided that I would no longer follow the traditional approach to soliciting business. I wanted to get out of this routine and follow my instinct. So I would meditate before I headed out every morning. I followed whatever thought came to me. The following are examples of what transpired.
I got up quite early one morning for no reason. The only thought I had was to go to a doctor’s office in Diamond Bar, so off I went. Since I did not know the area well, I gave myself plenty of time to find my way around. But after searching for 30 minutes for the office, I grew frustrated. I was about to give up, but I gave it one last shot.
Fortunately, I found the doctor’s office that I wanted to visit. The moment I walked in, a doctor came out and asked me whether I was from a home health agency. I answered with a quick “Yes,” and he said, “OK, here is the patient that your agency can take care of.” He then gave me a piece of paper with the patient’s information. I was surprised and excited to get the patient so effortlessly.
My daughter was amazed that I could get a patient from my first visit to the doctor’s office. She said to me, “Mom, you must have God on your side for you to receive a patient like that.” Little did she know that there were more to come?
I remember when I first became a community liaison; I had no idea what to do. I was a biology major in college. I did research, and I rarely needed to talk to anyone. It seemed impossible to switch from such a job to a community liaison position that requires a lot of talking and communication with others. Yet at the time, since there was nothing open for me in my own field and I was eager to get a job, I did not have a choice except to embark on this new career.
A couple of months later, while I was driving near a busier area of Los Angeles, somehow I felt the urge to stop at a doctor’s office. I was not familiar with the area, and this caused me to feel a bit uneasy. I went to the office and gave the girl in front of my business card and waited to see the doctor. A gentleman came out after five minutes, and he gestured me to follow him. I thought he might want to get some snacks next door, so I went after him. But he did not stop and just went straight toward his car. I told myself, “Well, he looks like a doctor. He dresses like a doctor. He comes out of the medical office. I believe he must be a doctor.” Honestly, I did not know what to do except to follow him.
I was still telling myself that it was all right to go with the gentleman in his car, and I started to make conversation by introducing myself and my company. As I was talking, the gentleman stopped his car in front of a hospital then we proceeded to the doctor’s lounge where he ate some food that the hospital had prepared for doctors. Eventually, we ended up in a patient’s room where he examined the patient and conversed with him in Spanish. In the end, he turned to me and told me to greet the patient. I was not sure whether if the patient understood English or not, so I just wished him a speedy recovery.
On the way out of the patient’s room, the doctor asked if I were bored following him as he did his rounds to see patients. I politely told him that it was an eye-opening experience for me and that I appreciated it immensely. He made the final stop at the nurses’ station and wrote notes on a patient’s chart. He then turned to me and gave me a piece of paper with information about the patient and told me that this case was for me. I was in awe!
Wow, I got my patient without my begging. When the doctor took me from his office to the hospital, he had already planned to give me the case. It seemed strange and did not make any sense as to what he did. But I knew my instinct helped me to get results.
It is quite difficult to solicit business from doctors. Many of these doctors have been working with home health agencies for years, and are not necessarily open to meeting new marketers. When I first started, there were times where I would sit in a doctor’s office for a couple of hours. The longest time I’ve waited to see a doctor is four hours – from the time the doctor’s first patient went in until the last one came out.
One day I distinctly remember a receptionist once told me to wait after I gave her my business card. So I sat there … a half-hour passed… then an hour… then the second hour passed and the receptionist grabbed the opportunity to ask the doctor to see whether he could see me when he came out to the front. “NO,” was the doctor’s response, loud and clear. Not only did he refuse to see me, but he also said it loud enough for me to hear him. My eyes started to water because I felt humiliated. Somehow, I swallowed my pride and managed to walk out of the office graciously. Once I got out, my tears came out like a flood; they were hard to control. Fortunately, I immediately tried to turn the situation around and went to a boutique store in the same shopping mall to reward myself for my courage. I bought myself six lovely blouses and a couple of pairs of pants. The owner gave me an additional discount because he saw the tears in my eyes.
Six months later, as I was driving toward the East side of town, a couple of blocks before I got on the highway, I had a hunch that I needed to make a U-turn and go back to visit the doctor’s office I had just passed. I knew I had to follow my intuition; otherwise, I risked missing out on something good! As I walked in, the new doctor saw me and invited me to follow him. He was unusually young – about one of my son’s ages. So I just talked to him about the life lessons I had learned, and I gave him advice. As we were deep in dialogue, I forgot the reason why I was there. He seemed to be willing to listen to my words and after 10 minutes he asked me whether I came from a home health agency. I told him, yes, and he picked up the paper on the table and told me that this patient needed the service. Amazing, it was as though he had that paper with the patient’s information just for me ready to go! This happened without my pleading, and all I needed to do was to receive it.
Indeed, one can make the impossible possible if one is willing to get past one’s habitual thinking and follow divinity.