Morristown, NJ – The word “PATIENT” comes from the Latin word patiens, meaning ‘I am suffering.’ The word “PATIENCE” is the quality of being patient, defined as an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay… say, for instance, in a waiting room. The waiting room itself can be cause for suffering.

In our 2015 Trend Reports, we highlighted a consumer trend that we call restless impatience. We have become a species of instant gratification and constant motion, never leaving a single moment wasted. As I sit here in the waiting room and admire the wonderful choice of wallpaper, I started to look outside of healthcare to see how other brands have waged war on our inability to wait.

Your Table Is Waiting

The first that comes to mind is waiting for a table in a restaurant. That’s the worst. It seems like everyone else is hungry the same time you are (7:00 on a Friday night). Open Table’s reservation app meets this need and allows you to check out your local dining scene and minimize your wait time with a click of your smartphone.

Lets Ride

Waiting for a taxi can also be daunting. Not only are you waiting for your ride, you are usually exposed to the elements. A little extra wait time goes along way to increase your frustration levels. Uber doesn’t allow you to make reservations in advance, but at least it gives some transparency into how long it will be until your driver arrives, giving you a chance to grab a Starbucks if you see that you have a few minutes. Remember, our restless impatience tells us that we need to fill every moment and what better way to do that than with a triple shot espresso.

Check Me In

For my next example, I am going to be honest—I don’t go to a fancy salon to get my haircut. I prefer a quick visit for under $15 and I can be on my way. Not long ago, Great Clips introduced a “Check-in” feature for their app. I can search for the nearest location on my phone, choose the one with the least amount of wait time, and check-in to move to the top of the list. When I walk in, they are usually ready for me and I can be in and out in under 10 minutes.

Now, back to my own experience in the exam waiting room… I am finished completing the 20 forms that are needed, they have my insurance information, and I’m stuck here reading a People Magazine which I don’t really care about. We have the ability to improve the experience and meet our patients needs. By understanding the trends that are driving our everyday decisions, we can meet those expectations as they are happening.

App To Watch

The MyTime app just announced additional Series B funding to build out their already well-adopted scheduling app. While its focus is on a broader consumer market, the company has taken interest to some medical and dental professionals.

About the Author:

As Managing Director of Innovation and Insights for Syneos Health Communications, Leigh is responsible for building and scaling a global team of healthcare experts who together help life science leaders better understand the complex lives, influences and expectations of their customers. Specifically, they uncover actionable insights that fuel empathy and creativity; lead co-creation events that let marketers learn from peers, trends, and new possibilities; and help clients identify the most valuable and useful new customer experiences to create.

Leigh has worked with Fortune 1000 companies to craft their digital, mobile, social and CRM strategies for nearly 20 years.She’s worked for category-leading agencies in retail, public affairs, B2B technology, and higher education. Prior to moving to Syneos Health Communications, she held several leadership roles at our largest agency, GSW.  There, she founded an innovation practice fueled by the zeitgeist and spearheaded digital and innovation thinking across the business.

Leigh has taken a special interest in complex healthcare products that can change lives in meaningful ways. She was recently a strategic lead on the 3rd largest launch in pharmaceutical history: Tecfidera. Before that she had keys roles with Eli Lilly Oncology, Abbott Nutrition, Amgen Cardiovascular, and Eli Lilly Diabetes.

A critical part of Leigh’s work is trends and new ideas. Every year, she convenes a group of trend watchers from across our global network to identify the shifts most critical to healthcare marketers. This year, she led over 250 experts to experts to focus on the most important changes in the commercial, consumer, marketing, digital and healthcare landscapes. (See reports at

Leigh is a sought-after writer and speaker. Recognized as one of the most inspiring people in the pharmaceutical industry by PharmaVoice and Top 10 Innovation Catalysts of 2017 by MM&M, Leigh also was recognized  as a Rising Star by the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association (HBA) for her overt passion, industry thought leadership and significant contributions in new business, strategy and mentoring.