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Frequently Asked Questions

Doesn’t communicating with caring take more time—time that we don’t have?

Although learning and practicing takes some time, when you use these skills, this does not consume more time. In fact, you become more effective and efficient and prevent tough situations that frustrate you and eat up time. And usually, you can effectively express your caring in a single line here, a single line there—throughout your interactions.

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How much does the Language of Caring cost?

The cost depends on several factors. Please click here to inquire for your organization. Jill Golde or Dorothy Sisneros will call you for information in order to provide an accurate price quote.

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We’ve done communication training before. How is this different?

It depends on exactly what you’ve done. Some people have done one-shot workshops on service excellence or communication. While some skills might have been similar, the process might not have provided the depth, skill mastery, and hardwiring key to results. Others have implemented AIDET from the Studer Group. Language of Caring does not duplicate this. It provides people with the skills for having personalized, 2-way communication—skills for expressing empathy and responding effectively when the patient or family has questions, concerns, anxieties, and fears.

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We hate scripting. Does this involve scripting?

This does not involve scripting. Language of Caring focuses on communication skills that help employees communicate with caring spontaneously in all of their conversations with patients, families, coworkers, and their own family and friends. These skills are invaluable and versatile life-skills. You cannot script for all of the important interactions you have. You need a skill set that you can draw from at will in all kinds of situations.

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What if we’re already implementing another model, like patient-centered care, Planetree, Relationship-Based Care, or Caritas. Does the Language of Caring work with these models?

With each of these models, caring communication skills are KEY.  Staff communication needs to be caring, nurturing, supportive, and personal to make these models produce the desired results. With concrete communication skills that make your caring felt, your efforts will be much more successful.

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How do people justify the time it takes to implement this program?

Skill-building is quick and to the point, respectful of people’s scarce time. You don’t have to send people away for training.  Skill Modules fit into staff meetings or short ad-hoc meeting. Each employee workshop takes less than 30 minutes. Habit-building options are concrete and do-able. And, the program is turnkey, so that coordinating the process takes very little time too. Would you say “We don’t have time” when asked to address patient safety? A great patient experience is KEY to your mission. If you aren’t investing time and attention, you can be sure your standards will slip.

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Can the skill modules be self-study modules?

They can be self-study modules that people can access with an individual login on the Client Portal. However, the process is more effective when it includes the team learning and habit-building activities in work teams. Some clients use the modules as self-study for special groups, like new employees, night shift employees, or employees who missed a team session.

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How do you get managers to hold people accountable for using the skills?

Leadership commitment, ongoing attention to these skills, and leadership skill-building all support accountability. Also, it’s important to realign human resource practices (e.g., job descriptions, performance reviews, and performance objectives) to build caring communication into all elements of performance management and job expectations. The Language of Caring team also works with managers to strengthen key accountability skills (role-modeling, expectation-raising, coaching, and feedback).

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Does this program take into account cultural differences?

Yes. Culturally sensitive communication is patient-centered communication. We need to tune in to each individual fully, take our cues from them about what makes them comfortable or uncomfortable and, when in doubt, ask questions to learn from them what they need or prefer. We provide several examples in the videos.

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How do you reach physicians?

While some clients engage physicians in the Language of Caring for Staff, most implement the Language of Caring for Physicians: Communication Essentials for Patient-Centered Care. This is our comprehensive, web-based program that is receiving international acclaim.

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