Core Concepts: 3 Communication Tools to Improve Quality of Care

Good communication is key in a wide variety of fields, but none more so than health care. Care workers need to be able to communicate with customers and with each other, and sometimes these conversations can be difficult, particularly the ones with customers. At SCF, we recognized the importance of communication in our relationship-based care system long ago, and we have striven to support all our care workers in developing the communication skills they need to form meaningful relationships with customer-owners.

Core Concepts is a training SCF has created for our employees to support our vision of a Native Community that enjoys physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness. The training has several goals, but one of the most important aspects is the communication tools that it offers to participants. Core Concepts teaches a variety of methods and tools that participants can take with them to use to have good dialogue and productive conversations. Read on to learn about three communication tools to improve quality of care.

3 Communication Tools to Improve Quality of Care

1. Mental Models

Learning about Mental Models helps participants understand the impact of intentions and how to listen effectively. Participants learn how our Mental Models are established by past events, experiences, media and other messages we receive, and going forward, serve as filters through which we observe, interpret, and respond to the world. Mental Models can limit our ways of thinking and behaving, but have the potential to evolve through ongoing learning and interaction with new individuals and environments.

2. The Ladder of Inference

This is a way of describing the ways in which people select what they treat as important, add meanings, and draw conclusions. However, conclusions appear obvious and we rarely think about the steps it took to reach them, or how our beliefs, assumptions, and values influence those conclusions. When we “jump up the ladder” (i.e., quickly move to a conclusion without stopping to reflect), this can present challenges in communicating with someone who does not draw conclusions in the same way we do. Understanding the Ladder of Inference and the ways in which we reach a conclusion can greatly aid communication.

3. Advocacy and Inquiry

Advocacy is a skill for slowing down the process and revealing to others how we reached our conclusions. Inquiry is a skill to learn how others reached their conclusions and understand our impact on others. Core Concepts teaches techniques for good quality interactions based on both these skills; how to practice good advocacy, encourage and invite inquiry, and seek and understand alternative views.

These are just a few of the communication tools offered at our Core Concepts workshop; many others are also taught.

Core Concepts Workshop

Slots are available in our Anchorage Core Concepts sessions, where you will learn alongside SCF employees. Click here to sign up today and discover a proven workforce training on relationship-based care.