As many of you will know, Making Every Contact Count is a national initiative to engage organisations, staff and individuals to make positive changes to improve physical and mental health.
From looking at this concept, it made me think about the work Community Education Provider Networks (CEPNs) are involved in (workforce development in primary and community care), and how we can make every contact count when promoting the work we do.
Create a memorable pitch
To help introduce your CEPN to your peers and stakeholders, have a short and punchy pitch which includes the purpose of your network, a tangible example of a recent success and what you are working on right now. This should last no longer than 2 minutes (Max!)
Create a plan on a page
To help people remember what the CEPN is for and the tangible workstreams you are working on; we need our communications to be clear and succinct. This means there is no need for lengthy operating plans or strategies, a simple plan on a page is suffice.
Be committed to communication
It can take as much as 7 communications or touch points in order for someone to take action, which is extremely important to remember when looking for engagement. Within these touch points, you are looking to start the process of people knowing, liking and trusting you.
Newsletters, videos, blogs, frequently asked questions, interviews, articles and testimonials are all tactics that you can employ to help foster this.
Follow up and keep in touch
Make sure you follow up and do what you say you are going to do.
Be helpful, be generous and build goodwill. It really will make a positive difference and help you and your network to be remembered.
Frequently asked questions
What is a CEPN aka a Community Education Provider Network?
A network of health professionals working together to support recruitment, retention and professional development across general practices and community care.
How did you start supporting CEPNs and Primary Care?
The University where I used to work began supporting their local CEPN as there was alignment with their health-care education. I was a Business Development Manager at the time and I was invited to an evening meeting, which to be honest I was reluctant to attend, but I went, and from then I was hooked!
Here I began working with an amazing group of GPs in the middle of setting up a Community Interest Company to help transform the way health-care education and training was delivered in general practice.
They had the clinical expertise, and I had the business acumen.
Very quickly, I decided to leave my full-time permanent job without a job to go to, had 3 kids under the age of 5, was in the middle of an MBA and set my business up. I saw an opportunity and without much thought and the support of my husband, I took it.
Four years on, through word of mouth, I have supported 11 CEPNs, CCGs, GP Federations and a physiotherapy service.
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