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Say what?

BY Dave Wendland

Some suggest that the art of effective communication has been lost forever. We are living in a world of instantaneous, rapid-fire communication. I fear that our desire to respond rather than reflect has resulted in a society that spends more time trying to clarify rather than progressing. Perhaps the classic line from Paul Newman’s 1967 movie "Cool Hand Luke" sums it up best: “What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.”  

A recent study by SIS International Market Research revealed that a company with at least 100 workers spends an average downtime of 17 hours a week clarifying communications, costing businesses $524,569 a year. Seriously? Perhaps we have become addicted to fast-and-furious email and text messaging at the risk of effectiveness. The SIS study suggests that internal productivity is clearly at risk.

These five pain points were revealed in the SIS study as most prevalent in negatively affecting internal communication effectiveness: inefficient coordination; waiting for information; unwanted communications; customer complaints; and barriers to collaboration.

Could the same be true of brand messaging directed toward consumers? My guess is that messages are often lost on their path to purchase due to lack of clarity, memorability, consistency, and overall communication effectiveness. Allow me to submit this as an example: Does anybody really remember any of the key messages or brands shared during this past February’s Super Bowl commercials? I believe that the majority of these insanely expensive investments have not been recovered and have most decidedly been forgotten.

Messages are present almost everywhere one looks, including logos, identities, and the graphics on product packaging. The exuberant use of visual and textual elements to attract shoppers has resulted in a vast array of product packaging, which can be “aggressive” in appearance, overly persuasive and overzealous, incoherent, and downright chaotic. In other words, brand messages are no longer being heard.

In today’s “always on” environment, consumers are bombarded by unnecessary messages from products, expressed with big  words that can be difficult to understand. So, if the volume of messages and the resulting noise have become ineffective, what must a brand do? I recommend getting back to basics and cutting to the chase. Brands have less and less time on shelf or through their promotion to stand out. Keep it simple, succinct, and consistent.

Mark Twain was credited with saying, “Don’t use a five dollar word when a 25-cent word will do.” Try it – you will be pleasantly surprised with the results.


Hamacher Resource Group vice president Dave Wendland, a 20-plus-year retail industry veteran, is a popular presenter and discussion facilitator available to speak at corporate and association events on a variety of retail-related topics. HRG is a research, marketing and category management firm specializing in consumer health care at retail. Product manufacturers, healthcare distributors, retailers, technology partners and others rely on HRG for strategic and creative solutions to help build their business. Learn more at www.hamacher.com.

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D.WENDLAND says:
Jun-23-2014 10:44 am

Marilyn Thank you for your comment. It truly is ALL about common sense.

M.COFFMAN says:
Jun-19-2014 12:42 pm

AMEN to common sense!

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American Diabetes Association lowers A1C target for children

BY Ryan Chavis

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — The American Diabetes Association will lower its target recommendation for blood-glucose levels for children with Type 1 diabetes, according to a statement released at the association’s 74th Scientific Sessions.

The association now recommends that children under the age of 19 years diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes try to maintain an A1C level lower than 7.5%. Previously, the levels could be as high as 8.5%. Research now shows that prolonged hyperglycemia (high blood-glucose levels) can lead to complications in children, such as cardiovascular disease and kidney disease — complications that at one time were believed to only occur in adults.

"The evidence shows that there is a greater risk of harm from prolonged hyperglycemia that would occur if children maintained an A1C of 8.5% over time. This is not to say we are no longer concerned about hypoglycemia, but we now have better tools to monitor for hypoglycemia," said Jane Chiang, M.D., SVP, medical and community affairs, American Diabetes Association and one of the lead authors on the Association’s Position Statement. "The 7.5%  target is evidence-based; however, we want to emphasize that blood glucose and A1C targets must be individualized to safely achieve the best outcomes."

 

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Drchrono integrates Google Glass into EHR platform to create wearable health record

BY Antoinette Alexander

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Drchrono, a creator of a free electronic health record platform on the iPad, iPhone and cloud, has integrated Google Glass into its EHR platform to build the first wearable health record for physicians.

For the first time, doctors can be hands-free while looking at medical records. The future of a doctor is one where they have an iPad, an iPhone, a laptop and Glass all connected through a mobile EHR platform so they can spend more one-on-one time with patients instead of processing paperwork, drchrono stated.

"The iPad was a new consumption device that changed the world, and now we are seeing that doctors want to use more and more hands-free technology. Glass is one of the first of its kind to do this. A physician wants to practice medicine and not be burdened with all of the paperwork that goes on in the practice. We knew this would be an important app to integrate into our EHR platform, and we’re excited to now offer this to doctors using drchrono,” Michael Nusimow, CEO and co-founder of drchrono, stated.

Some of the uses for Glass and drchrono include:

  • Taking pictures in any setting by just saying, "Ok, Glass, take a picture," (e.g., during surgery a doctor can take a picture that will be pulled into the patient’s medical record without his having to touch anything that could get his hands infected);
  • Recording videos of patient encounters or medical surgeries to document, so that medical staff and scribes can code in asynchronous time offline, and view the video to add codes after the encounter;
  • Real-time data streaming of patient encounters so that doctors can have other physicians, patients’ family members or scribes watching anywhere in the world while the physician can focus on the patient 100%;
  • Flipping through patient profiles on the heads-up display — with the tap of a finger, physicians can quickly preview a list of all of the patients they are seeing for the day;
  • Getting real-time notifications about who has come into the office with alerts about patients coming in or needing help; and
  • Reviewing medical data about patients hands free.

"This is a game-changing device; I am amazed at how well drchrono and Glass help the documentation process during patient encounters. It’s a big time saver," said Bill Metaxas, who recently started using drchrono and Glass in his San Francisco practice. "I can see Glass becoming an integral part of the norm in a physician’s workflow."

Drchrono also is expanding its platform integration with Box by enabling medical data captured with Glass to be available on Box’s cloud content platform.

"Doctors want better workflow for capturing clinical documentation. Glass provides faster alternatives to standard data collection and capture. By partnering with Box, drchrono can broaden its data-sharing options by allowing relevant medical content to be securely shared with patients, family members and other providers involved in patient care,” Missy Krasner, managing director of healthcare and life sciences at Box, said.

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