Communication, switching on and Basil Fawlty

This is my second blog in exploring how the 6Cs are evident in our online nursing activity – in the first blog last week I explored how courage is apparent in every tweeting nurse. In this weeks blog I want to explore communication…

can telephonesOk so I have to admit that this one sounds obvious and I can hear you all now saying that social media IS communication and I would have to agree with you, to an extent! In nursing communication is somewhat of a given, we communicate constantly with the people we care for, with their relatives, their carers and we communicate with people within our teams and the wider healthcare community beyond … in fact as nurses do we ever stop communicating? But the mere presence of communication in nursing is not enough and the same can be said of social media. Within social media communication is also a given and we are constantly communicating every time we tweet, update our Facebook statuses, post a YouTube clip or share a blog but is that enough ? To truly communicate surely we need to do engage? This YouTube clip demonstrates my point >


basilfawltyThis clip cleverly demonstrates that in order for effective communication to be achieved all parties need to be “switched on” Basil is clearly communicating with the hotel guest but she is by no means tuned in to his messages and clearly not engaged. Basil tries shouting louder but that does not work and eventually Basil himself gets fed up and tunes out. Do I see this in nursing ? Unfortunately sometimes yes I do – in nursing there are those that engage fantastically and there are those who struggle with it and the same can be seen in our online nursing behaviour. Some people just talk regardless of whether the audience is switched on, some people SHOUT their messages in the attempt to make themselves heard and some people switch off altogether and refuse to listen.

NP2Having said that for a bunch of early adopters of the use of social media as nursing professionals I believe we are getting it right more that we are getting it wrong. Nurses put others professions to shame in the way that they listen to each other and share important messages. Nursing conversations are productive and inclusive. Nurses are sharing colourful and engaging content to get their messages across and this is reciprocated with important feedback decreasing the possibility of “switching off” and giving up. If you don’t believe me take time to stop and listen and watch – nurses are excellent role models in communicating via social media. I would have to advocate to anyone to not be a Basil when using social media to communicate … be a nurse