Looking at things differently, communicating clearly

Apologies for the delay in doing the Week 45 summary (been a bit busier and more tired than I’d anticipated). Thank you very much to those who contributed posts this week. It was great to have a new contributor, John Cane, who started with explaining something of his professional life as an independent speech and language therapist, working with primary and secondary schools in My working life…. I look forward to reading more about John’s work in the future.

Speech and language therapists were also mentioned in Elaine Hunter’s AHP : A Hidden Treasure #AHPDementia . She wrote about the types of AHPs (Allied Health Professionals) in NHS Scotland who can help people with dementia, their families and carers. I hadn’t realised that quite such a wide range of help was available.

Brian McCulloch’s post this week for Ayrshire Health was a very interesting read. In What’s it got to do with me? he revealed how patients can be reluctant to understand that they need to do something to improve their own health. I recognised the attitudes he described. Hospitals are rather scary places, different to our normal, non-medical worlds. I came across an interesting article on how the design of signs in accident and emergency departments can reduce violence: Signage system for hospitals “reduces violence by 50%.” On the very rare occasions when I have had to go to accident and emergency, I have been extremely anxious and found it quite difficult to understand what was happening around me.

I find the posts about the change to a greater use of digital technology in Dumfries and Galloway fascinating. This week’s was by Graham Gault: Ask yourself – “ is there a real difference…..with eHealth” and had a couple of similar pictures at the top, with a challenge to pick out the very expensive Picasso and the very cheap one by an anonymous painter (I was relieved to get it right – I am an art historian!). Sometimes, I have spent time in hospital waiting areas thinking about what a good controlled vocabulary system for the NHS would look like (one that incorporates words that ordinary people understand as well as the medical words).

I’ve been trying to use, and train others to use, straightforward language at work for many years. Dyfrig Williams’s post for the Good Practice Exchange at the Welsh Audit Office – Jargon busting – indicates that people still need to be trained to use Plain English and Cymraeg Clîr (Clear Welsh). Dyfrig’s own posts always seem clearly expressed to me.

Georgia Parker always writes very clearly in her posts. I think many readers would identify with the issues in her post, Back to blogging and the benefit of a break, of whether to dive into a large pile of work and not emerge until it’s all done, or step back for a while and recharge. I find sometimes that taking my work to a different place works well (I’ve always enjoyed working on trains and in cafés).

Ross Wigham used a boxing metaphor when thinking about the role of strategy in communications work, and the importance of being flexible in approach, in Strategy – like a punch in the teeth. I think most work needs a framework that sets out the principles of what should be done, but can flex, stretch or even contract to fit the reality.

I enjoyed the challenges to established art world thinking (and more generally to our cultural attitudes in the West) in Louise Atkinson’s Practice as research Week 53 A visit to the Museum of Contemporary African Art. The Museum in question is an artwork, an installation in the Tate Modern. There certainly needs to be more education about visual arts in other cultures. In the Western tradition there is still continuing debate about definitions of fine art, applied art, design and craft. I would worry if we ever fixed them because then culture would be dead. I worry that current copyright cripples creativity more than protecting creators’ rights, but that’s a whole other discussion.

Finally, a brief post by me about a couple of quite quick drawings I did in an art class in an art gallery: Hatton Gallery drawing session 3. There’s a post related to this in Week 46.

Thank you very much to all those who Liked, Followed and passed on links to this week’s posts. It does help to encourage the bloggers if you indicate that you think their post is worth reading. If you want to contribute, you are welcome to join at any time – more info is on our About page which tells you everything you probably need to know. Because I’m behind with the summaries, the [entirely optional] theme is for Week 48 and I suggest Winter Solstice, or Advent, or dark nights.


Janet E Davis

Summary of Week 45 posts

Strategy – like a punch in the teeth by  Ross Wigham.

My working life… by John Cane.

Hatton Gallery drawing session 3 by Janet E Davis.

Back to blogging and the benefit of a break by Georgia Parker.

What’s it got to do with me? by Brian McCulloch on the Ayrshirehealth blog.

Jargon busting by Dyfrig Williams at the Good Practice Exchange at the Welsh Audit Office.

AHP : A Hidden Treasure #AHPDementia  by Elaine Hunter.

Ask yourself – “ is there a real difference…..with eHealth” by Graham Gault on the Dumfries and Galloway Health blog.

Practice as research Week 53 A visit to the Museum of Contemporary African Art by Louise Atkinson.

Weekly Blog Club was set up in early January 2012 to encourage people to blog regularly, and especially to encourage those working in and with the public sector, charities and voluntary organisations in the UK to find their own 'voice' through writing.

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Posted in #WeeklyBlogClub summary, blogging, communicating, culture, design, digital technology, disability, fine art, health, health services, languages, learning, management, mental health, museums, patient care, public sector, schools, social media, therapy, training, visual arts, working practices

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