Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Value of Being Friendly and Chatty

No, this isn't about networking (though it certainly applies to that, too). This is about me being a chatty person and my last trip to the dentist.

I've gone to the same dentist for over 15 years. I love them. They love me. I've referred several friends there over the years, and back in the hi-tech days, I used to recommend my dentist to anyone who'd ask (we had an email list where you could ask for recommendations). Somehow my dentist found out that I'd done that (I think someone quoted what I'd written for the internal wiki). Ever since then, I get discounts. Note: I quit the hi-tech job in 2004.

The last time I went in, they didn't charge me for my post-cleaning consultation ($56, I think), and they gave me an $80+ discount for paying in full (I also had two small fillings).

Because I'm on good terms with my dentist, I saved over $130 on that last visit. Saving the $80 for paying immediately definitely makes up for having to put the bill on my credit card (my work wasn't stabilized enough then for me to feel comfortable using my "emergency" fund for the visit).

So, I saved over 35%, just because I've built a good relationship with my dentist! I know they give discounts for paying in full at the actual visit, but I'm not so sure the discount is quite the percentage I received then...

I remember having annual reviews, back in the hi-tech days, where the biggest criticism on the review would be me being chatty. However, back then it helped to get things done (when you have a friendly relationship with someone, they're far more likely to acquiesce to a "can you just give me a minute and squeeze what I need in now" request), and the same quality still gets "things" done (saving over $130 at the dentist -- which was a pretty significant percentage, considering my total bill).

So yes, just like telling people what you're up to makes sense from a business networking point of view, it also makes financial sense to be friendly.


Jerry said...

Good for you! Looks like being chatty leads to saving money. Do you have dental insurance to help with some of the expenses? Regardless, that's great.


lastAutumn said...

Yeah!Being easy-going and extraverted helps us enjoy our lives to the full. It brings good energy.