Last Saturday, my wife slipped and broke her wrist.  Yesterday, her wrist was surgically repaired.  She’s doing fine. 

I learned a couple of things while at the hospital that are germane to this blog.  Here they are, in no particular order:

1)  Your waiting room says a lot about you.  A few weeks ago, I wrote "My now daily trip to the car dealer" in which I lavishly praised my Lexus dealer’s customer waiting room.  As impressed as I was with my Lexus dealer’s waiting room, I was appalled by the shabbiness of the Hospital’s waiting room for people whose family member was in surgery.  Cheap, worn out furniture, lack of connectivity, lack of space, lack of refreshments and facilities combined to make the waiting room an unpleasant area. 

2)  Communication is important.  Surgery was supposed to start at 9:30 and last "an hour to an hour and a half at most."  At noon, when I hadn’t heard anything, I asked the volunteer in the waiting room to check in to see how things were going.  "We’re not supposed to call the OR."  I encouraged her to make an exception, which she did.  She reported that surgery had not started until "a bit after 22," which, coincidentally was about the time I started worrying whether everything was okay.  Just think how easy it would have been to share that information.  Frankly, I had more insight into the progress the car technician was making on my car’s oil change.

The moral of this story is that I would rather do my waiting at the Lexus dealer.  But, for here, isn’t the moral that if people visiting your office have to wait, it’s better that the wait be a positive experience?  Won’t that make it more likely (even if just a little bit) that people will come back?