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11th April 2018
Dear <<First Name>>

Something we have seen time and time again is that joy really is contagious. It was clear to see from all your pictures of Kitchen Table Week, and from our own venture to Frimley Health’s Kitchen Table, that positivity spreads like wild fire and once you have one beaming grin sat at a table many more are bound to follow.

Of course the opposite is also true and one of our favourite talks we saw in the last year was on the affect that incivility can have on those around you, even those not directly affected by the act itself. The short version is that acts of incivility actually diminish your team’s cognitive function and so their ability to perform at their best. So, the way we behave and interact with each other is vital to patient safety…that sounds familiar.

This week we’re exploring the evidence for the impact of incivility, hearing about others’ experiences and looking at ways that we can instead harness the power of civility in our own work.

Coming up:

Twitter pic of the week
Kitchen table at North Devon Healthcare NHS Trust. Looking great guys!
Civility saves lives

That great talk that we mentioned above was given by Dr Chris Turner at a Learning from Excellence conference and we loved it! Chris is one part of a collaborative project called Civility Saves Lives that aims to promote positive behaviours and share the evidence for their benefits.

Their website is full of great resources, from academic papers and books to podcasts and videos which means there is something that everyone can take away from it, even if you’ve not got much time to spare.

The site also has a ton of easy to understand and extremely interesting infographics like the one below.
We think they’re great and well worth sharing. Some of our favourites are:
The price of incivility

The idea that incivility decreases performance isn’t an entirely new one and nor is it specific to healthcare. There has been research on the topic for some time and it has featured in the Harvard Business Review.

Business management and leadership experts recognise that incivility has a negative impact in corporate environments. Surely then, this is something that should be in sharp focus in healthcare.

In this article two of these experts, Christine Porath and Christine Pearson, lay out some of the research but also go a step further and suggest ways that you can combat incivility in the workplace.

Of course, it’s written from a corporate perspective so may take a bit of imagination to implement where you work but it is a great place to start.

Read the article here
Risky behaviour

Risky behaviour is always bad and should be punished, right? However, in healthcare, just as in most things, situations are rarely black and white but that doesn’t stop us labelling them as such.

The way in which we use language can sometimes do us a disservice, loading a situation with emotion and bias before objective thought comes into play. Was that risky behaviour or a necessary diversion from the standard procedure?

Suzette sums this up brilliantly in her blog ‘Violations/Risky Behaviour’ where she talks about the different forms of “violations” and why, in this complex setting, questioning the reasons behind them is a much better approach than taking a blanket negative view of all deviations from the norm.

Read Suzette’s blog
A way of calling out rudeness

As you’ve read, rudeness and incivility can have a big impact – so what can we do about it?

Unfortunately, we may not be able to route out rudeness completely from our organisations but the first step is recognising it and calling it out. This is easier said than done.

Partha Kar, a consultant in diabetes, writes brilliantly in her own blog about the challenges that she has come up against concerning incivility, and in her mind, how enough is enough for rudeness in the NHS.

Read her blog
How incivility shuts down our brain at work

If you have eight minutes to spare there is a brilliant video on Youtube of Dr. Christine Porath, who co-wrote the article ‘The price of incivility’ (above), giving a talk on the effects of incivility on our brains.

The information is quite shocking, showing how much worse we perform after being exposed to, or even witnessing, incivility. The example Christine uses is in a hospital - and may even have happened where you work; information being missed that leads to harm because incivility has caused someone a lapse in concentration.

It really does make you think about the affects your own actions may have and is definitely worth a watch if you have the time.

Watch the video
Putting people centre stage

In everything that we do for the campaign we always have one word constantly swirling around our heads – kindness.

We approach all of our communication thinking about the person on the other end. Will our words support them and empower them or could they be perceived negatively?

It’s actually pretty easy to do once you get started. We all know how to be kind, and we probably all want to be, but sometimes it gets lost behind a message that may seem clinical or abrasive. Thinking about the people you’re trying to reach and putting them at the heart of your communication, rather than an impersonal message, can drastically alter the tone of what you’re saying.

Cat, our Communications Manager, has written a blog about the way in which we try to communicate with that word in our minds, how that impacts the tone of what we say, and how it ensures our members take centre stage.

We hope you find it helpful food for thought for when you’re planning how to communicate with your colleagues around patient safety or improvement.
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