The Cleveland Clinic has long had a reputation for medical excellence. But in 2009 the CEO acknowledged that patients did not think much of their experience there and decided to act. Since then the Clinic has leaped to the top tier of patient-satisfaction surveys, and it now draws hospital executives from around the world who want to study its practices. The Clinic's journey also holds Lessons for organizations outside health care that must suddenly compete by creating a superior customer experience. The authors, one of whom was critical to steering the hospital's transformation, detail the processes that allowed the Clinic to excel at patient satisfaction without jeopardizing its traditional strengths. Hospital leaders: Publicized the problem internally. Seeing the hospital's dismal service scores shocked employees into recognizing that serious flaws existed. Worked to understand patients' needs. Management commissioned studies to get at the root causes of dissatisfaction. Made everyone a caregiver. An enterprisewide program trained everyone, from physicians to janitors, to put the patient first. Increased employee engagement. The Clinic instituted a "caregiver celebration" program and redoubled other motivational efforts. Established new processes. For example, any patient, for any reason, can now make a same-day appointment with a single call. Set patients' expectations. Printed and online materials educate patients about their stays--before they're admitted. Operating a truly patient-centered organization, the authors conclude, isn't a program; it's a way of life.