South Island Plastic Surgery Limited

Success more than skin deep

In these challenging economic times, Christchurch plastic surgeon Howard Kein views customer service as the most important factor in stimulating growth for his business.

Howard’s company, South Island Plastic Surgery Limited, is committed to delivering clients the highest quality cosmetic and reconstructive surgical care with a unique twist, a result of time spent in the United States. Born and raised in the US, Howard has practiced as a Plastic Surgeon for more than 20 years and moved to New Zealand with his wife and two children, in 2002.

“When I started my practice in New Zealand, I found that the patient is often treated at the convenience of the surgeon. Unlike many surgical specialists, we view patients as customers, the person we are serving. We have brought the American customer service focus to our business and it is this fusion of the North American approach with a Kiwi sensibility that provides a unique patient experience.

“We appreciate that people have options about how they spend their money and as well as a strong customer service ethic, I believe what contributes to making our business successful is the value added by our team,” says Howard.

The team at the busy practice is a family affair. Along with a nurse, receptionist, and an on-call beauty therapist, Howard’s wife Wendy, is the Practice Manager. And Howard wouldn’t have it any other way.

“Having Wendy on the team is a huge advantage. I have the confidence that she will provide the same information to patients as I would. Working and living together means we are ‘in sync’ and I’m sure it generates confidence amongst our patients.

“Our team is a very important factor in the success of our business, as they all contribute to the experience of the customer. We deal with a range of customer’s emotions and must provide a seamless, high quality service that inspires confidence. Communication with our patients is paramount,” he says.

As President of the New Zealand Association of Plastic Surgeons, Howard is often speaking with his counterparts around the globe. One thing they agree on is that globally it’s a very tough market. “People are being very thoughtful about spending dollars.”

Managing business interests and investments both here and overseas has called for astute financial advice. Howard found that in Belinda Canton, partner at Markhams Christchurch.

“In this difficult climate, financial matters can be very complicated. With business interests both here and in the US, I needed an accounting firm with international expertise and I have that with Markhams,” he says.

Recently Howard utilised Markhams’ advice very effectively when he went through the process of rationalising some costs in the practice. “I felt that getting Belinda’s perspectives and recommendations was very important in navigating through that process. We’ve been able to cut costs without sacrificing quality, which is a very satisfying outcome.

“Belinda has become much more than an accountant; she is my business advisor – part of my team.”

Published Spring 2011.

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