Communications 2.0

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I recently reviewed the results of the latest Johnson Health Center’s (JHC) employee satisfaction/engagement survey and, like just about every other survey I have ever been involved with, communication was at the top for things we could improve on. 

59% of our employees chose to take the time and invest in our relentless pursuit to improve on the great culture we have built on the way to becoming an Employer of Choice. 

According to Albert Mehrabian (Mehrabian & Wiener, 1967 and Mehrabian & Ferris, 1967), he used two studies to determine that communication could be divided into three categories and ranked them in terms of relevance; body language – 55%, tone of voice – 38% and actual words spoken – 7%. Click here to read more on this. 

There is much more to the studies and how we interpret them however one thing is certain, how we communicate, how we perceive communications and what we expect as it relates to communications can be rather complex. 

In 2014 when we conducted our last survey of this type, communication was a primary area of focus then as well. We worked hard on this by inviting feedback and input from staff (we will do the same again!). As a result, the intranet, JHC Connect became a hub of information share; the JHC Connector newsletter was born, the Patient Centered Medical Home model became more team centric and communication focused, and data integrity became more than a laughing joke. 

During this time, I was also in the middle of two kids in college and living at home with a social calendar that I didn’t always understand or agree with. I remember thinking, how can I deploy the things we are doing at JHC so they work at home? 

What I learned then that still holds true today, communication is a two-way street. They say silence is golden but I disagree if you want communication to be successful. Bi-directional communication is a necessity for success on any level. It takes a sincere heart and an ear for listening more so than talking. 

My evolution of learning at home is similar to the way I approach my work, if I don’t understand what is happening or I am not learning of things until after they happen, I ask and I try my best to ask in a manner that breeds genuine positivity with the intention to learn. 

As we prepare for communication improvement 2.0 at Johnson Health Center, I am encouraging humble and empathetic participation and contribution. I have also ask them to apply the “what can I do” approach to make sure any stumbling blocks to communications are overcome. 

If you are working on improving communications in your world, go about it the same way; listen, be humble and empathetic and apply positivity on every exchange. 

Let’s model the way at work, the community and at home. I guarantee you will reap the benefits both personally and professionally. You will be “Impactful”!