Effective communication – It starts with properly listening

Hello, it’s Joe here again. Are you ready to hear more about my accreditation journey? Well, lean in and listen closely.

Do you ever spend too much time formulating a response that you forget to listen to what somebody says?

I’m currently completing the communication modules – the first step of stage 2 accreditation. And you know what, I am not as good a communicator as I think I am. In my community pharmacy, I always feel like I must be ever listening – counselling Glenda on her new opiate medication, overhearing a conversation about a dry cough a customer is having with the pharmacy assistant.

On reflection, I’m not good at listening at all. I’m good at hearing. I hear everything that is going on around me in the pharmacy, when I’m dealing with interaction with Glenda I’m already thinking about how to answer my next conversation. Does this sound familiar to you?

Listening is more than hearing.

I have realised that I have a lot to learn about being a good listener. Sometimes, the four walls of pharmacy and the constant buzz don’t make for an easy listening environment. HMRs are personal events, often a one on one interaction with a patient, directly in their home. No distractions, except their cat and the sound of the birds outside. Time to listen, properly.

The communication modules are far more than just MCQs,.

Multiple choice questions – now they bring back some university memories. Which of the following is the least best appropriate option not to take? In the communication module there are 19 MCQs, some of which are designed to trip you up a bit. If I could give you a small bit of advice for your accreditation – read and engage with the resources provided. Take it in. We all want to be accredited, but the process is useful and will help you (and me) improve. It’s not just about the destination, enjoy the journey to accreditation. I’ll keep you updated on my journey soon.