This particular cartoon makes me laugh. I was recently approached after presenting to an audience of writers hoping to expand their skills into Health Economics and Outcomes Research (HEOR) writing by an attendee interested in starting a blog. My thoughts on mentorship and how to obtain one have been covered here but needless to say the struggle is real. After being inundated with calls, I finally had the time to talk with the hopeful would-be HEOR writer. She immediately asked me to hire her or instruct on how to write a blog!? I asked if she had read my blog and the response was "no". I don't need to step you through all that is wrong about this scenario but I did think that a few words on creating a blog might be in order. I do hear from quite a few data&donut followers and typically if they are seeking advice it is always prefaced with a meaningful comment about a specific blog entry or guided informed positive feedback.
I evaluate cognitive biases in all surveys I review or create and always recommend Thinking, Fast, and Slow by Daniel Kahneman as a superb introductory text and conversation about heuristics in behavior-- directly applicable to the practice of medicine--specifically medical education. A particularly useful gem is the cognitive bias called the Dunning-Kruger Effect.
A few insights that may address a few pain points are listed below. I am new to blogging in the grand scheme of things but I do answer a lot of questions regularly enough that perhaps there are a few more interested readers.
1. Social listening-- what is your network discussing? Identify a niche or a specific need that you are uniquely qualified to address
2. Avoid analysis paralysis--don't over-think it. Start small habits that are building toward a big action or business idea
3. Follow a reliable framework--you don't need to reinvent the wheel. The "skin" of your offering is what will reflect your unique expertise.
4. Allow your authentic voice to emerge--think about handwriting. The way you write is personal and distinctive to your personality.
5. If you can move it an inch, you can move it a mile--think scalability
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In a world of "evidence-based" medicine I am a bigger fan of practice-based evidence.
Remember the quote by Upton Sinclair...
“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”