Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do. : Oscar Wilde

Friday, June 29, 2007

Does Anybody Comply?

In case you don't recognise it that object on the right is a pill organiser. It's meant to make it easy for someone to ensure that they are taking their medications on time. High-tech it might not be. Nonetheless it is an an effective answer to an extremely challenging problem for health professionals: how to get people to comply with advice.

You or I might think that this would be no problem but this is not so. A number of individuals in the pharmaceuticals industry have told me that, even people with diseases likely to result in really unpleasant or life-threatening consequences such as diabetes can be difficult to bring into compliance with the recommendations of health professionals.

As career developers we have compliance issues too and the one that I am most aware of has to do with networking. We advertise the benefits of networking to clients, we show them how to do it, we coach them in it, we stress it. (Some of us even network ourselves.) Yet when we follow up with clients how many of them are actually doing it?

The original job finding club paradigm achieved good results (in the United States at least) probably because it follows certain well understood learning principles. Should we review current practice to ensure that we are still concentrating on the main benefit of this paradigm? Is there anything to be learned from other more recent psychological studies that could also be applied in this area of counselling practice—to induce people to gain the benefits of networking?

If anyone has any thoughts I would love to hear them.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/carrieflickr/369695428/

2 comments:

Alison Berry said...

Bill,
My Mum struggles to comply because it is so difficult to get the pills out of her pill organiser. They all have square corners so that she can't scoop out the pills, and her pills are so tiny that they disappear when she tips them out into her lap.
Regards,
Alison.

Bill Bell said...

Hi Alison,

Thanks for your comment. (I hope you're going to read this.) Is it at all possible that you could send me a picture, or manufacturer's number, or something that we could use to identify a better solution for your mother. I do have a number of contacts in the industry that should be able to help.

I take a medication regularly which is intended to protect against migraines. I just dump the little container into the palm of my opposite hand. Obviously there is something about your mother's needs that are more complicated.

I would like to know what they are.

Bill