The Messenger Chronicles 5: Moving Toward Synergy

The “Messenger Chronicles” online training series presents ideas for communication in difficult situations. “Moving Toward Synergy”, helps learners to recognize the strategies that can be used to create synergy within a team. Synergy can be described as an experience in which the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Like the other modules in “The Messenger Chronicles”, “Moving Toward Synergy” features strategies that can be used in your daily work and personal life to enhance communication and collaboration.

*This course was launched in October 2009. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

The Messenger Chronicles 4: Managing Stress and Time

The “Messenger Chronicles” online training series presents ideas for communication in difficult situations. The latest module, “Managing Stress and Time,” helps learners to recognize the symptoms of stress and the factors that may increase their susceptibility to stress. Strategies to manage stress are offered in the scenario-based training. Learners are also given a framework for managing and prioritizing tasks to help minimize “stress-causing” situations. Job aids like the “Project Startup Tool” and the “Urgent/Important Matrix” are provided for learners’ use.

Like the other modules in “The Messenger Chronicles,” “Managing Stress and Time” features strategies and frameworks used in real-world situations that learners can apply to their own environments. Open-ended and multiple-choice questions give learners the opportunity to reflect on the course content and compare their thoughts to expert recommendations.

*This course was launched in August 2010. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

The Messenger Chronicles 3: Be Prepared!

The “Messenger Chronicles: Effective communication strategies for difficult conversations” presents a new framework for communication in difficult situations. This framework shifts focus away from managing “difficult” people towards an understanding of the process of difficult conversations and accepting responsibility for one’s own performance. Given realistic situations and real-world conversations, learners will experience communication strategies and practical techniques in context.

The “Messenger Chronicles” is organized into a number of modules that simulate realistic conversations. Many of the conversations are split into three sections: Read, Think and Analyze. Learners will read a conversation and then will be asked to think about certain aspects of the conversation by answering questions or engaging in activities. Further information can be gained from an interactive analysis of the conversation.

*This course was launched in May 2009. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

The Messenger Chronicles 2: Flex-time Fiasco

The “Messenger Chronicles: Effective communication strategies for difficult conversations” presents a new framework for communication in difficult situations. This framework shifts focus away from managing “difficult” people towards an understanding of the process of difficult conversations and accepting responsibility for one’s own performance. Given realistic situations and real-world conversations, learners will experience communication strategies and practical techniques in context.

The “Messenger Chronicles” is organized into a number of modules that simulate realistic conversations. Many of the conversations are split into three sections: Read, Think and Analyze. Learners will read a conversation and then will be asked to think about certain aspects of the conversation by answering questions or engaging in activities. Further information can be gained from an interactive analysis of the conversation.

*This course was launched in October 2008. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

The Messenger Chronicles 1: Introduction & The Four Cs

The “Messenger Chronicles: Effective communication strategies for difficult conversations” presents a new framework for communication in difficult situations. This framework shifts focus away from managing “difficult” people towards an understanding of the process of difficult conversations and accepting responsibility for one’s own performance. Given realistic situations and real-world conversations, learners will experience communication strategies and practical techniques in context.

The “Messenger Chronicles” is organized into a number of modules that simulate realistic conversations. Many of the conversations are split into three sections: Read, Think and Analyze. Learners will read a conversation and then will be asked to think about certain aspects of the conversation by answering questions or engaging in activities. Further information can be gained from an interactive analysis of the conversation.

*This course was launched in August 2008. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

Exploring Cross-Cultural Communication

“Exploring Cross-Cultural Communication” is a web-based course that invites learners to spend time thinking about and developing their own responses to a variety of ideas and situations about culture, communication and public health. Learners will explore the meaning of culture, methods of communication, and strategies for communicating more effectively by taking part in “virtual” group conferences, reading and responding to simulated e-mails, and utilizing resource documents.

The course is divided into three modules, designed to be completed in the order they are presented.

1. Culture

This module presents some basic but important concepts of culture through a virtual group seminar. In the first seminar, culture is defined and the reasons why people create cultural stereotypes is examined. A set of simulated e-mails introduces the learner to a situation that requires the application of both cultural sensitivity and sound communication techniques.

2. Communication

The second module defines health communication, describes the process of human communication and offers a number of good communication strategies.

3. Cross-Cultural Communication

By working through the final module, learners compile a list of effective cross-cultural communication strategies which help in resolving the communication situation presented in the first module.

Building on the format of the “Orientation to Public Health” course, “Communicate to Make a Difference” allows learners to interact with the course in meaningful ways. By providing thoughtful responses to questions posed in the course seminars, learners can explore their own cultural beliefs and biases.

*This course was launched in September 2004. It was reviewed in August, 2015 to assess its relevance to the current public health workforce and evaluate its continued listing on the Region 2 PHTC website. The review process was based on a subset of recognized standards. In order to keep the course up-to-date, the reviewer additionally identified further resources to help learners achieve the objectives of the course.

Click on the appropriate button to begin.

I do not work for a State or Local Health Department in NYS.


I do work for a State or a Local Health Department in NYS.

If you are employed by NYS or a local health department in NYS, we recommend that you register for this course through the NYS Department of Health Learning Management System (DOH LMS).

Suggested Resources for Further Learning:

  • Community Tool Box, Cultural Competence and Community Building, Chapter 27 “Cultural Competence in a Multicultural World”, Section 2 Building Relationships with People from Different Cultures here
  • CDC Tools for Cross-Cultural Communication and Language Access Can Help Organizations Address Health Literacy and Improve Communication Effectiveness here
  • US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Minority Health, Think Cultural Health here