ISBN 10: 0071833250 / ISBN 13: 9780071833257
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Cleveland Clinic has long been recognized for driving some of the best clinical outcomes in the nation, but it was not always a leader in patient experience. There was atime when this revered organization ranked among the lowest in the country in this area. Within ten years, however, it had climbed to among the highest and has emerged as the thought leader in the space.

How did Cleveland Clinic turn itself around so effectively and so quickly?

More important, how can you do the same with your organization?

In gripping, visceral, on-the ground fashion, Service Fanatics reveals the strategies and tactics the Clinic applied to become one of today's leading patient-experience healthcare organizations--methods that seamlessly translate to any business seeking to improveits customer experience. This strategic guide covers:

  • How the Clinic's leaders redefined the concept of patient experience and developed a strategy to improve it
  • Critical lessons learned regarding organization, recruitment, training, and measuring service excellence
  • Ways in which the Clinic aligned its entire workforce around its Patients First strategy
  • How leaders improved the critical element of physician communication

Rather than view patients simply as sick people who need treatment, Cleveland Clinic sees them also as important stakeholders in the organization's success. Patients are customers--who desire, pay for, and deserve the best possible care and experience during what is often a challenging time in their lives.

Featuring customer service case studies, as well as invaluable insight from C-level executives at top corporations in various industries, Service Fanatics provides actionable lessons for any manager and business leader beyond healthcare.

Whether you run a healthcare institution, nonprofit, or for-profit business, Service Fanatics will help you create the kind of customer experience that promises to transform your organization into an industry powerhouse.

From the Back Cover:

Service Fanatics will become the gold standard on patient-centered care. Cleveland Clinic in all its glory, like many of the rest of us in healthcare, had lost its way with compassion and empathy. Dr. James Merlino in his role as the Clinic’s Chief Experience Officer, along with CEO Toby Cosgrove and the rest of the healers at Cleveland Clinic, changed that by putting Patients First. Merlino’s description of this journey is at times painful, raw, and brutally honest. Service Fanatics and its author exude passion, humility, integrity, and caring. It will make any organization better and is a must-read for everyone in healthcare.”
―David T. Feinberg, MD, president of UCLA Health System and CEO of UCLA Hospital System

“This is an important and very timely book. Dr. Merlino reminds us that the complexities of the global healthcare challenge must never obscure our primary focus on the patient and patient experience. This is the story of one of the world’s leading medical centers going through transformation without losing sight of its true mission.” 
―Alex Gorsky, chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson

“Merlino gives a behind-the-scenes account of how Cleveland Clinic, traditionally known for medical excellence, transformed itself to put equal focus on the patient experience. It’s a fascinating story on its own merits, but it’s also the story of the future of health care. For all health care leaders are (or those who soon will be) leading a similar transformation, this book will be an indispensable guide to the journey ahead.”
―Dan Heath, coauthor of the New York Times bestsellers Made to Stick, Switch, and Decisive

“This book is a candid recounting of Cleveland Clinic’s rocky, flawed journey toward creating world-class patient experience. James Merlino is painfully honest about the failures and mistakes along the way, even as he lays out a practical roadmap for change. This combination of candor, pragmatism, and hope is why Merlino has emerged as one of the most respected healthcare leaders in the country. Service Fanatics is invaluable for any hospital administrator determined to transform patient experience.
―Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group

“Driven by his experience as a family member, patient, and physician, Jim’s passion has created a movement to refocus the healthcare system’s design, process, and culture on the patient. With his colleagues at Cleveland Clinic, he has championed the effort to once again center care around the patient and has engaged healthcare leaders across the industry to embrace transparency in the spirit of improvement. Jim’s commitment to his patients and empathy for their journey resonates on every page of this book. When we reflect on the major transformation of the industry, history will show that Jim Merlino and Cleveland Clinic were at the forefront of returning our healthcare system to the patient and helping us return to the noble cause that drew us all to careers in healthcare.”
―Pat Ryan, CEO of Press Ganey

“It’s an important work by the leading voice in patient experience. It’s also a gripping personal narrative that changed my perspective on every doctor-patient interaction I’ve had in my life. . . . Service Fanatics is upfront about just how hard it is to change a culture so that it becomes truly customer-centric―then tells you how you can do it anyway. Merlino describes the challenges at Cleveland Clinic with an unsentimental eye, and he also provides detailed descriptions of what the leadership team did to overcome those challenges. . . . All in all, Service Fanatics is a great read that’s also making me smarter about patient experience. If only all business books could bring those two elements together.”
―Harley Manning,

“It is one thing for a leader to establish an organization-wide priority and quite another to achieve it. To many, Cleveland Clinic’s rapid improvement in patient satisfaction scores appears nearly miraculous. Dr. Merlino’s book offers a compelling and candid tale of how an already great hospital engaged its 43,000 employees to become even better. By detailing every step with candor and eloquence, this book explains precisely how the hospital achieved its gains―and, in so doing, offers invaluable lessons not only for healthcare leaders but for anyone interested in how to achieve meaningful progress across any organization.”
―Barbara R. Snyder, president of Case Western Reserve University

“Anyone involved in healthcare will treasure Dr. Jim Merlino’s book because it provides a candid, poignant look at patient care from both provider and patient perspectives. The stories and lessons around empathy and compassion are inspirational and help us think more clearly about the importance of the overall patient experience.
―Kurt Newman, MD, president and CEO of Children’s National Health System

“In this warts-and-all account, Jim Merlino describes how he and his Cleveland Clinic colleagues transformed a culture focused almost exclusively on clinical excellence into one that fully embraced the need to deliver a caring and empathic experience for people. In so doing, Merlino has created a comprehensive and methodical playbook for other healthcare organizations seeking to fulfill the same paramount objective: putting patients first.”
―Susan  Dentzer, senior policy adviser to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

“The art and science of caring for others is remarkably highlighted in Dr. Merlino’s splendid Service Fanatics. This is a must-read for all leaders or aspiring leaders in the business of delivering professional services. Dr. Merlino and his Cleveland Clinic colleagues get it!
―Marc Byrnes, chairman of Oswald Companies

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