Connect Communications specialise in creating workshops for organisations according to their needs. Examples of Workshops are:

Interactive format: in these workshops, the presenter mixes theory with demonstration and discussion, participants becoming involved as much as the group size and time allow.

Actor: Where needed, having a professional actor to take on roles, greatly increases the immediacy, vitality and effectiveness of the workshop.

Group size: while we do work with groups of more than fifty, we prefer to work with smaller group sizes (ideally less than 20) as more individual attention is possible and learning is more interactive in smaller groups.

Venue: Connect Communications is based in Auckland and also travel internationally as required.

Cost: Please contact Connect Communications for a financial quotation to meet your needs:

Communication Challenges with patients, colleagues and staff

A case based approach is used to explore common scenarios such as the upset or demanding patient and uncooperative colleagues or staff.

Participants describe scenarios they encounter in their work. An actor takes the role of the demanding person, whether a patient, a relative or a colleague, and the facilitator elicits help from the participants and tries out different approaches. Theory is brought in as appropriate, with key learning points summarised using the REBELS acronym. Participants are encouraged to practice different role play exercises as appropriate.
Participants come away from this seminar recognising the need to really understand the other party, and knowing ways to set their own limits confidently and effectively.


Breaking Bad / Life Altering News

This workshop will help clinicians to feel more confident when they have to impart bad news to patients such as cancer, and in other emotionally charged situations. Clinical scenarios are chosen by participants, then enacted by the facilitator with a professional actor taking the patient’s role. Participants join in the demonstrations and discussion. This interactive approach is backed by a short presentation covering the theory – using the SPIKES protocol presented by Baile et al to the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Participants come away from this seminar with a sound understanding of how to communicate life altering news effectively and sensitively.


Supervision in the Medical Setting

While this workshop has been designed in conjunction with MCNZ for Clinical and Pre-Vocational Educational Supervisors, it can be tailored to the needs of other groups. The workshop combines a light look at supervision theory and practice followed by demonstrations, discussion and practice of common scenarios. Common topics are how to give feedback, the under performing intern, sensitive topics and the doctor in difficulty. To ensure the scenarios are relevant, we use those described by participants.


Workplace Enrichment: Self Care and Resilience

Why is it that some health professionals feel chronically dissatisfied and are exhausted, whereas others find a work/life balance that suits them? This workshop looks at what we can do to feel vibrant and in charge of our lives at work. Time is spent exploring both personal and team indicators of well being using a creative diagnostic approach. A tailor made series of skills will be taught to address the predominant needs of the group, followed by both a personalised and a team based “Management Plan”.

The workshop is a blend of personal exercises in self reflection, with discussion and some theory. We aim for participants to emerge with clear ideas about steps that will help enrich their working lives. The time involved can be flexible, but at least a full day is recommended.

Follow up and review is available, ensuring that the learning remains dynamic and responsive to change.


Enhancing Health Behaviour Change

The workshop draws upon skills taken from the motivational interviewing and brief intervention models, applied to the health setting. Theory is introduced, with demonstrations, discussion and participants practicing in small groups to the extent that time allows. Common scenarios used in role-play practice would be: engaging with a resistant smoker, working with non-compliance, and raising a sensitive topic like obesity or condom use. Participants learn the value of understanding the patient’s situation and building rapport, so they can adjust their intervention to the patient’s level of motivation. This leads to a more satisfying interaction for both patient and health professional, and a greater likelihood of health behaviour change.


Resolving Conflict in the Workplace

“The patients are easy: it’s the colleagues who give me grief!”
This workshop is designed for health professionals working in different settings, from hospital departments to general practice and pharmacies – and can be adapted to the needs of the group.

The format is interactive with a mix of theory, drawing upon recent research, demonstration with facilitator and actor, discussion and practice. Participants are encouraged to enact scenarios they encounter in their work, with an actor taking the role of patient, relative or colleague.

The workshop covers topics such as horizontal violence and bullying, personal assertiveness; nipping conflict in the bud; ground rules for dealing with conflict, and reducing conflict in an organisation.


Counselling Skills in General Practice

Experienced general practitioners and practice nurses find that the longer they work in general practice, the more likely they are to find themselves in a counselling role with their patients. While this aspect of our work has been under-emphasised in our training, it is central to the clinician’s role.

Brief counselling requires a shift from feeling obliged to fix every problem, to being able to get alongside the patient in a supportive relationship. We give participants practice with the skills needed to do this using the time that is available. This leads to more satisfying interactions for both patients and clinicians.