Sunday, May 3, 2015
I was traveling recently with a client. Our travels took us to Ottawa, Ontario during the second week of April. By chance, the Ottawa Senators were opening up their Stanley Cup Playoff series with the Montreal Canadians. The bars, restaurants, and cafés were full with supporters dressed in red, black and white. The downtown chore was alive and vibrant.
After dinner, my colleagues and I headed to a local pub to continue a conversation that started over dinner. We walked into the Manx Pub, as soon as we walked in I could sense that the establishment had the feel (and look) of a genuine British pub.
As we were conversing over a pint, it dawned on me that there were no tv’s, no massive monitors displaying the play-off game, no loud music piped through the speaker system. As I looked around the room it became evident that everyone in the pub was steeped in engaging conversation. Although the environment was conducive for “having a good chat”, the degree to which people were truly engaged was incredible.
No loud people ranting and raving, no grandstanding so that people at adjacent tables could hear what was being said. Nobody monopolizing the conversation. I simply can’t recall walking into such a comfortable environment. It then dawned on me that not a single patron was scrolling through their smart phones or tablets. Patrons were listening intently as they engaged back and forth in what appeared to be fascinating conversation. In fact, no distractions whatsoever. It’s interesting to note that the patrons were quite diverse, a somewhat eclectic group of people could be found in the Manx pub on this particular evening.
My experience and observations in the pub reinforce that the (almost) lost art of face to face communication can be of significant value when applied in personal as well as professional settings. A number of years ago I stumbled upon a post that made reference to the “7 C’s” of Communication. I take this opportunity to share the 7 C’s of Communication.
When writing or speaking to someone, be clear about your goal or message. What is your purpose in communicating with this person? If you're not sure, then your audience won't be sure either.
When you're concise in your communication, you stick to the point and keep it brief. Your audience doesn't want to read (or hear) six sentences when you could communicate your message in three.
When your message is concrete, then your audience has a clear picture of what you're telling them. There are details and vivid facts, and there's a laser-like focus.
When your communication is correct, it fits your audience. Ensure that the technical terms you use fit your audience's level of education or knowledge.
When your communication is coherent, it's logical. All points are connected and relevant to the main topic, and the tone and flow of the text is consistent.
In a complete message, the audience has everything they need to be informed and, if applicable, take action.
Courteous communication is friendly, open, and honest. There are no hidden insults or passive-aggressive tones. You keep the viewpoint of your audience in mind, and you're empathetic to their needs.
The better we communicate, the more credibility we'll have with our clients, our boss, and our colleagues. Use the 7 Cs of Communication as a checklist for all of your communication. By doing this, you'll stay clear, concise, concrete, correct, coherent, complete, and courteous on a consistent basis.
Although I embrace technology, consideration should be given to walking across the office and conversing with colleagues when it’s appropriate. All too often people hide behind emails are often sent with countless people copied (that don’t need to be).
Friday, March 20, 2015
One in three Canadian employees say they are now suffering or have suffered from a mental health condition such as depression or an anxiety disorder. Another 27 per cent say they are experiencing significant symptoms of stress.
Morneau Shepell survey results are available by linking through to
In response to requests from our clients, Integral HR Solutions has developed a number of Mental Health Awareness Training Modules. The modules include:
- Identification of mental health issues & illness in the workplace;
- Strategies to effectively communicate with and manage distressed employees;
- Proven strategies to address stress & anger management in the workplace;
- Strategies to deal with dependency issues in the workplace;
- Conflict Resolution
- The Duty to Accommodate;
Integral HR Solutions Inc is pleased to advise that Donna Morreau, RN is partnering with us to facilitate Mental Health Awareness Training. Donna's primary focus is to create and facilitate Mental Health Awareness and Intervention Training for organizations that are taking a proactive approach to managing mental health in the workplace.
From a professional standpoint Donna is a RN in Mental Health Facility. In a Charge Nurse capacity, Donna is called upon to function as an educator providing leadership to her colleagues and co-workers during times of crisis on the mental health inpatient unit.
Over the past 20 years, Donna has taken a lead role in numerous mental health crisis interventions. As a result of Donna’s extensive experience, she works closely with a team of psychiatrists to effectively assess, diagnose, and address patients that are suffering from mental health issues and mental illness.
In addition to her professional responsibilities, Donna is a faculty member at the University of Windsor. In the capacity of Clinical Instructor and Faculty Advisor, Donna has been teaching 3rd and 4th year B.Sc. N students for the past 10 years.
As a life-long learner, Donna continues to expand her education and awareness in the field of Mental Health. Recent professional development courses include Non-Violent Crisis Intervention and Code White Training (Responding to a Violent Situation).
We welcome Donna to the organization. We welcome opportunities to discuss our Mental Health Training and Awareness education.