Part 1: What is Social Media?

 

I’d like to start this series by defining “What is Social Media?”

The definition of social in this case refers to living within a community, not necessarily the fun or trivial type of social you might picture when thinking of parties.  Social means community. 

As for the word “media”, there is no clear definition of what makes a website or online service “social” and just like many concepts, it has taken on a life of its own.  However, one thing remains clear:  The rise of Social Media and the activity of “Social Networking” marks a fundamental change in how we use the Internet.

In the past, the internet was a tool you used to get information from websites in a one way fashion, from the website to you.  Now, the Social Media revolution has created a more social, collaborative, interactive and responsive web.  This marks a change in us as a society and the Internet as a technology.

Today, we aren’t just using the Internet as a tool — we are becoming a part of it.

What is Social Media? It is the group of tools that create the new web, the human web.

 

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare. 

The Thing about Social Media

 

Do you remember when email was the “new thing”? 

How about the internet, word processors, or even computers?  It sounds funny now, but I remember people doubting if those tools would be anything more than just a passing fad.  Fast forward to 2010 and I earnestly believe that Social Media is the same sort of “new thing” that we’ll need to learn and embrace to be effective leaders in the coming years.

The only reason I bring this up now is that my last post about “Social Surgery” caused quit a stir.  However, despite all the publicity surrounding social networking, I still see a lot of healthcare leaders questioning the need to join and engage on any social networks at all (i.e. Facebook, Linkedin, or Twitter).  They just don’t see the need. 

Maybe I can help by sharing some of my experiences and research.

All around the world, social media is helping build revolutionary communities that are impacting how people get their information.  Just recently, a study showed that 3 out of 4 Americans get their news from social media or email.  Never before has information or peer support been more available, and social media is playing a big role.

In addition to gathering information and finding free support from peers, social media also makes information about you and your organization (both good info and bad) easier to find and share.  If you’re a leader at a medical facility, this could potentially make your work life easier or more difficult, depending on your ability to recognize both the opportunities and threats facing your department or organization stemming from Social Media.

Learning about Social Media is key, just like learning how to use email was important years ago.

Next week on Tuesday, I’ll be doing a webinar for my HFMA chapter called “Making Social Media Work for You”, and I’ll be sharing some thoughts and research in a series of short morning blog posts until then.  Hopefully they’ll be good practice for my HFMA webinar and helpful for anyone wondering about the value and future of social media. 

If you’re interested in the discussion, comments are encouraged and you can subscribe to the blog postings on the upper right hand side of the ClearMatters.com blog website.

Have a great Sunday!

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare. 

Social Media Causes a Stir in the Medical World

As you can imagine, I got a lot of feedback after yesterday’s post (Social Surgery?  Your Patient is Tweeting About You… ).

Surprisingly, many people were:  

  1. Shocked that someone would post information like that about a surgery
  2. Surprised that the hospital would allow this
  3. Confused that one person could cause such a stir

Unfortunately, for those who were shocked, there’s more to come. 

The world has changed.

I’ll explain more in my next post, but I’ve got to run to a couple meetings right now.  I really want to help explain it.  Stay tuned…

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare. 

Social Surgery? Your Patient is "Tweeting" About You…

Your patient is in surgery right now, and all day he’s been tweeting about your nurses, doctors, signage, and even your EMR. 

He’s also posting pictures of your facilities, equipment, and gowns as well as checking in on FourSquare for his 832 facebook friends to see.  

Is he a patient at your hospital?

http://www.Twiter.com/TRCochran

Our world has changed…

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare. 

The Dawn of a New Era in Healthcare?

Some have likened the Social Media phenomenon (facebook, blogging, twitter, Linkedin, etc.) to the invention of the printing press and how it has since changed the world.

We completely agree.

In 2009, we built the Clear Medical Network to lay the foundation for a more connected healthcare industry. Now with over 60,000 connections made, we’ve seen the power of the revolution begin to make a difference in the lives and practices of nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals.

It looks like we’re now in good company!

The other day, the Mayo Clinic announced the launch of their Center for Social Media, which it says will expand social media tools beyond the traditional marketing role to help staff, physicians and patients stay more informed and connected.

To see a sample of what we’ve been up to and the difference it’s making, check out the blog posting from earlier on our Nursing Blog:

Top Nursing Resources on FacebookWith so many people on facebook now, it is easier than ever before to find resources, support from other nurses, and stay in touch with what’s going on in our field.  We’ve gone through facebook looking for well run, growing, fun places for nurses and we wanted to share some of our favorites: Nurse Circle – Nursing Support and Idea Forum Nurses Night Out – Social Nursing Page ER Nurses – Emergency Room Nurses Group (700 members) ICU Nurses – Cr … Read More

via Clear Nursing Matters

To stay in touch with our movement, we invite you to subscribe to the blog on the upper right side of the Clear Matters blog home page.

Social Media Savvy

(This post is part 3 of a short series on 4 Skills for Healthcare Leaders)

Just like the nurse I mentioned that was tweeting about her boring meeting, your employees and patients are probably tweeting or facebooking about things they don’t like too (or maybe things they do like). 

I would suggest that in order to maximize success as a leader at your facility, you will want to not only listen, but engage your stakeholders in a social way in order to learn more about them and their needs.  Listening to their needs shouldn’t be a new idea, it’s just nowadays when someone is unhappy, 10,000 people hear about it within 5 minutes.

There is no more hiding the bad…or the good!

Don’t believe me?  Check out http://www.SocialMention.com and try searching “Clear Medical Network” or the name of your facility in parentheses. 

Interesting?

The key issue is that your reputation matters for recruiting and retaining hard to find:

  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Surgeons
  • Therapists
  • Executives
  • and others

In order to operate and flourish in an industry facing these shortages of skilled people, you (not just HR or Marketing) will need to find and engage your future doctors, executives, nurses, patients, and everyone else.  On top of that, you also have marketing to patients as well. 

That is why I believe that having Social Media Savvy will be a key skill.

We’ll see you tomorrow for the third skill topic: Caring.

 

Learn about Social Media:

  1. Guide to Twitter:  http://mashable.com/guidebook/twitter/
  2. Guide to Facebook: http://mashable.com/guidebook/facebook/
  3. Social Media in Healthcare:  http://www.ClearMedicalNetwork.com

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare.

Learning on the Fly

(This post is part 2 of a short series on 4 Skills for Healthcare Leaders)

Question:  What do 32,000,000 new patients, FourSquare.com, ICD-10, and Audit MICs (Medicare Integrity Contractors) have in common? 

Answer:  They will all be important to our industry.  They are new.  And they’re knocking at your door.

Increasing shortages of doctors and nurses, social media usage, new regulations, EMR’s, reforms, technology upgrades, and on, and on…and on.  It never seems to stop, and it never will. 

Many people now say that we live in a world of continuous change, and when I see what our partners, suppliers, and government contractors are inventing every year, it seems quite obvious.  Change is no longer something to prepare for; it’s a way of life. 

Our new way of life 

Some people might say that I’m being dramatic.  However, if you look back just a couple years, it is interesting to think that there were no RAC’s, no Healthcare Reform, few EMR’s, no HITECH Act, no Twitter, no iPhones.  Change is now constant, and as developing countries only add innovation and  new technology, times and tools will change even more. 

In the world of continuous change, the only way to ride the wave will be to lead by learning, and learning quickly. 

That’s why it made my Top 4. 

See you tomorrow for the topic of Social Media Savvy.  Have a great day! 

(To have the next article sent to your email, subscribe to this blog at the top of the sidebar)

 

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He also enjoys teaching, speaking, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare.

4 Skills for Healthcare Leaders

In my opinion, leadership in the healthcare world has seen a drastic shift from just four years ago and it isn’t going back.  The “Good ‘Ol Days” we once knew are now officially gone (I know this may not be breaking news to you if you’re reading this).

For the skeptics out there, I don’t have any scientific research to back this up.  However, when you see the medical world from the eyes of a visiting consultant and interim leader, it is easier to step back and see how fast change is happening. 

For me, it only took a nurse (your nurse maybe?) posting on Facebook about how boring her hospital meeting was…during the meeting.  About 500 of her friends saw it, and they were commenting back.  One of the commentors told her about another job opportunity at a neighboring facility. 

Wow…

It’s things like this that get me thinking.  What will the future be like, and will we be ready?  I was doing some reading last night about future leaders and the skills they will need, and I created my own list of four skills that I think any of us will need to succeed in the future as leaders in a changing industry that will face severe shortages of nurses, doctors, therapists, and others.

  1. Learning on the Fly
  2. Social Media Savvy
  3. A Caring Attitude
  4. “The Champion” Skill

I’d love to hear your thoughts on each of these, as I’d be shocked if someone didn’t have a great 5th skill to add. 

In the coming days, I am going to write a quick series about these four skills and why I think they’re important.  If you’d like to take part in the discussion (or just get the next post via email instead), you can get these posts sent to you by signing up in the upper right of the main page. 

See you tomorrow!

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About the Author:  Aaron lives in Milwaukee, WI with his wife and two children and is the President & CEO of Clear Medical Solutions.  When he’s not leading new initiatives, he periodically takes on interim leadership or consulting projects.  He enjoys teaching, writing, and sharing his passion for people and their healthcare.