I founded The BioContinuum Group in 1993 after 15 years in healthcare advertising, communications, and medical education. In 1993 the vision and goal was clear, identify communications and educational strategies and match them to tactical programs that change behavior and improve patient care. Those goals remain in place today, what has changed are the elements that make up this new and dynamic market place.
Key points that have impacted my vision:
- Well-presented data drives discussion and learning more then a headline
- ACCME response to real and perceived bias in CME providers content management and outocmes measurement
- Adult learning and the fact it is key to knowledge uptake and behavior change
- Communications, advertising, marketing, and education can be improved by applying principles of adult learning
- Social and affect are the fundamental priciples in learning
- In healthcare the smallest discreet functional environment for learning is the HCP and the patient
- My wife's three-year battle with cancer and her passing
My vision and belief remains consistent, you can’t succeed without measurable goals, a simple clear strategy based on a kernel of insight. That is the bedrock of any communications plan or educational program. What do you want to do, how will you do it, and are you solving a problem?
When you apply principles of adult learning to an appropriate strategy you improve the ability to achieve your communications and educational goals because you’ve created a receptive and ready audience.
Learning takes place within our consciousness. It is an action based on a need--a problem to solve. It requires us to be actively engaged in learning behavior.
Learning begins when adults face a problem. A problem demands a solution. At that point we become affective, driven to learn. Receptors in our brain open to accept new information. We add what we’ve learning to our current compendium of knowledge. Our consciousness changes with new knowledge/experience because we’ve reflected on it and apply it to new behavior or decisions. This is a problem-centric solution to product and service communications and marketing.
This effect is greater in a social situation. When we learn with someone else or in a group we learn better. Each learner comes to the same problem with different solutions and understanding. Each learner adds something to the solution for the other. Social media is a learning tool NOT a strategy.
Lev Vygotsky identifed "zone of proximal development." If a person is engaged in self-directed learning, they'll get a certain amount out of what they do. If, however, they learn with another person of the same level of sophistication, they'll learn more. Hank Slotnick, Ph.D. says, "the pooled ignorance is less than the sum of the individual ignorance’s."
Most decisions we make as adults especially in healthcare revolve around solving problems for a family member or ourselves. Buying decisions and products we use or want to learn more about are based on our need to learn. Adult learning is a way to improve those decisions.
Currently I am consulting in CME while I identify companies and groups who want to improve the ability of their communications materials and educational programs to drive outcomes. I will post here, on twitter, and Google+. And, if I can help you with a problem let me know.