Podcasts are a popular medium to reach people. In this NHS example, Eliza Burke talks about what she has learned from launching Northumbria innovative healthcare’s podcast series.
As a communications team, we wanted another way to engage with our audience that wasn’t necessarily one of the same old traditional methods.
It took us a while to get the podcasts off of the ground due to the pandemic with social distancing guidelines and the pressures staff were under making it really difficult.
Now that the measures are easing and the COVID cases are declining, we felt more comfortable making a start.
With the past year being incredibly challenging for our NHS staff we wanted to know how exactly it’s impacted them.
We’re currently running the Inside Northumbria – COVID Reflection podcast series to showcase our brilliant people and their incredible resilience.
I’ll be chatting to a number of our different teams, ranging from clinical, to office based, to those who are sometimes behind the scenes.
We already produce an Inside Northumbria blog where more than 60 staff have shared their own stories in a really human way which and this has proved hugely popular.
Coronavirus has been the main challenge in producing podcasts during the last year.
Even now we are still facing the difficulty of minimising the number of guests featuring in the episodes, as well making sure we maintain social distancing and mask wearing guidelines. But with this happening for over a year now, everyone understands the importance of this.
What I thought was going to be another challenge was encouraging our staff to get involved in the podcasts, but so far, we’ve had a number of willing volunteers. Some staff members have even been in touch in the hopes that they can be involved with creating their own podcast series. An amazing response that I never expected.
The thing I enjoyed most about producing these podcasts is getting to meet and hear the stories of our fantastic NHS staff. Not only do I learn from them, but I get to understand them and their role as well as making new contacts within the organisation.
What I learned
From producing and hosting podcasts I’ve become much more confident within myself. Speaking publicly has never been a skill of mine, and I was cautious as I had to bounce off our guest speaker to ask further questions. But I changed my mindset and saw it as a casual chat and that really helped me to speak authentically and produce a good podcast.
Advice to others
The best advice I can give is don’t overthink it. The equipment can look frightening and the concept of talking into a microphone is nerve-wracking but it’s all fine. It’s much simpler than you’d think and can be fun and interesting. I’d recommend anyone to have a go.
Eliza Burke is a 22-year-old social media and digital assistant in the communications team at Northumbria Healthcare.