What Works For Me – December 2018

When I began my role at my current employer, I walked into a blank canvas. They didn’t know what they wanted or what they needed. I found many programs outdated, incomplete, or non-existent. So right away I dug in and we began building programs, writing protocols, and developing training. The primary concern was that each plan and resulting training was comprehensive and fit our needs – but turnkey solutions are often very expensive and can also have gaps for your specific application, no matter what the salesmen say. In this overwhelming moment, we decided to practice single tasking, devoting ones sole attention to one topic at a time- and seeing it through completion. Yes we put up the blinders for a bit, stopped worrying about fires we couldn’t control or put out, by single tasking we were able to develop and implement the right training the first time. By knowing our audience and our applications, and knowing that we were only going to work on one item at a time; we were able to direct our attention to more creative solutions. We decided that throwing money at problems wasn’t the solution and often created spin off problems. We needed more than what the first line on a google search yielded, although it’s a great start. Below are resources that we discovered along the way, perhaps they can help you in your practice or operation.

There is a wealth of information on YouTube. There are a ton of unique and inspiring; thought provoking health, safety, and personal development training. At my employer though, they prevent streaming videos. I discovered a free downloadable program called Clip Grab. Clip grab allows you to download open license videos – it prevents you from downloading copyrighted material. Videos download in mp4 format and are easily played on windows media player. Put them on a flash drive then add to your work computer. If IT/IS has an issue let them scan the flash drive each time before using on your employers network. If you download a bunch of videos and place in windows media player as a playlist, you can create your own looped presentation of Youtube videos. These are great for healthy recipes, stretching activities etc. We play these videos in the break room much like a custom health broadcast network, since I know my employees, I know what their health knowledge deficits are and I can customize the content to meet their needs. There are a few state OSHA and state colleges that also have a host of informative safety videos. Check with your safety team first before posting safety videos – don’t want conflicting info out there – https://clipgrab.org

If you want a turnkey health video program you can consult with David Milner, formerly of the Milner Network; now The Wellness Network. They have a turnkey catalog of waiting room videos for purchase covering many health topics in a variety of formats, lengths, and knowledge base. David will help you customize your catalog of titles, work with you on price, and help with implementation/tech requirements. Email: dmilner@thewellnessnetwork.net  Web: www.thewellnessnetwork.net

Sometimes the training available just doesn’t meet your needs or the content is a little off, maybe outdated in some sections, or perhaps it doesn’t fit your industry, but the content is perfect for what you want to communicate. One creative solution is Powtoon. An educator friend of mine told me how she uses this site in her class room to develop short educational videos. Powtoon is so easy second graders can use it; she had them develop videos for classroom presentations. It is Excel based – they have a host of content, clip art etc. It is free or there is a paid version. https://www.powtoon.com

Another resource using similar Excel format is Brainshark. One of my sales friends uses Brainshark to get his PowerPoint templates online and available for his customers. He sends them links to his presentations. They have their own training portal and videos etc. to get you started. These are custom presentations you build and supply to your team; great for onboarding, or getting team members up to speed. This is a paid service on a per user annual subscription platform. As my company adds nurse positions we will begin using this service to help our new nurses avoid the pitfalls and mistakes we have learned from. https://www.brainshark.com

Online learning formats are the rage because they are easy to implement, easy to track, easy to update but they can be costly. Often these formats track log in and progress through assigned personal log ins. Reports are easily generated by admin accounts, helping you keep track of participation. CA Short Company has developed this platform and blended it with an engagement and safety rewards program. You can add content quizzes to the employee portal for free and once the employee completes the assignment they are rewarded points. The points add up and the employee can select an item to be drop shipped to their house from on online catalog. Each point equals one dollar that the company buys in bundles. You are in control of point assignment and content. https://www.cashort.com

NTAOHN partnered with Career Smart to offer online CE’s. I met with the reps at the national conference and began working with Frank Canino who helped develop a chapter offering at an affordable price 1-2 dollars per CEU/Person which is super cheap. Career smart has many topics that are turnkey ready. Login review the content, take a quiz, and print off CE certificate. If you have any questions as a chapter or individual ask Frank. fcanino@careersmart.com https://careersmart.com/
The last resource I want to talk about is Wordmint. This is a web based design tool for crosswords, word finds etc. You supply the words or questions and it builds out the format based off of which type of game you want to create, and it develops an answer key. This allows us to make games for our health initiatives, safety committees etc. We buy a gift less than 100 dollars – whoever turns the crossword in by the due date is entered to win the prize. We do this monthly. There was a onetime fee with lifetime membership. It was less than 20 dollars for lifetime membership – this is an incredibly simple time saver. https://wordmint.com

Often we may get stuck in a rut and need some help with creative solutions for our problems. I hope that these resources can help you discover solutions for some of your problems or at least help you leap frog to one. Often we are so focused on the problem directly in front of us, we may wonder what other nurses are doing, but I challenge you to look at your network of friends and look at other occupations which may have solutions that can positively impact your struggles at work. Many of the solutions I have implemented don’t come from health or safety people – they come from other collateral professions who face the same challenges I do. When we talk I listen intently and ask as many questions as they will tolerate. I don’t concern myself with the why not’s at first, I just take notes then decide if its right for us after research, the point is being open alternative solutions.

Kevin Bready – NTAOHN President