How do you solve a problem like health & wellbeing?

gym

That sounds like a fairly abstract question I know and it reminds me of a Louis CK stand-up routine, where he plays the part of someone trying to explain to an angry god what a ‘job’ is.

The premise of the joke is that a benevolent creator has provided everything we need to survive and the minute his back is turned the humans have massively overcomplicated everything, leading to a need for jobs, double shot Frappuccinos and bacon cheese burgers.

So there lies the problem for big thematic questions like this, because dealing with big problems is inherently complex, can’t be tackled by one organisation in  isolation and there isn’t  a narrative that’s easy to communicate. Continue reading

Six things that PR can learn from healthcare

origin_4058808950

So I’ve worked in the NHS for five months now and I’m a bit further along in understanding how it all fits together.

So far in life I’ve been pretty lucky with health, so this job is my first real encounter with hospitals and medical staff and it’s fascinating to see how they work.

In my usual cross eyed way these are my six lessons that comms and PR people can learn from the medical profession. Continue reading

A different type of tablet on Gateshead hospital wards

This week I’ve been working on something slightly different that puts another spin on the omnipotent use of tablets and smart phones.

Nothing as exciting at the ubiqetious iphone6 launch, but something pretty impressive to me (as a newbie to healthcare and the NHS)

Look around you almost anywhere in public and you’ll see a wall of faces staring into electronic devices or tapping on tiny, shiny black touchscreens.

Now even medical teams will be doing the same, but in a way that’s good for your health. Continue reading

The NE comms conversation: 15 reasons to work in communications

IMG_3378

What started out as a germ of an idea with a couple of my contacts on Twitter has grown into a broad series of posts about the North East PR and communications scene.

What came out of a few light hearted and sometimes tongue-in-cheek questions was a really positive picture of a region that’s getting its mojo back after some extremely tough years.

Austerity and downturn has hit us harder than most other places, but these blogs speak to me about an area full of confidence, humour, defiance, innovation, hard graft, excitement and crucially a desire to roll up sleeves get things done.

I was also so impressed (but not surprised) at the willingness of PR professionals in these parts to share their ideas so readily so that others can learn from them. Make no mistake – I’ve learned loads from looking at these posts and would say they make some essential reading for anyone looking to break into the profession.

I’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who contributed.

One of my least favourite newspapers caused controversy earlier this year with a pretty shabbily informed article comparing the North East to the run down US city of Detroit. It implied a sense of hopelessness and self pity, well if you work in comms take a look at some of these and see if it changes your mind……

Continue reading

NE Comms conversation #15 “Too much really strong, good coffee.”

This week we get serious. Joining the NE comms conversation this time round is Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Kari Owers, from award-winning agency OPR.

I’ve long admired Kari and the work produced by OPR who in my opinion really set the agency standard here in the North East. Kari’s story is an inspirational one (check it out here) so I was really pleased to get the opportunity to work with her and her team on a tourism project when I was at Northumberland.

She provides her dose of fantastic advice in the 15th part of our series. If you’re studying PR or looking to break into it, this one is a must-read. Continue reading