A good-hughmoured in-house workout
on good business communication skills
(and in a good cause)


Creator and conductor Hugh Gibbons says:

A Lighter Writer course can be a welcome and highly practical help for practically anyone whose job demands good communication.

It’s a sort of good-natured spring-clean of communications skills in the workplace. And Lighter Writer aims to enlighten – to help you understand better not only what and how, but why.  With VGSOH.

Lighter Writer is also learning from a real person rather than on-line – responsive to and catering for individual needs (and away from screens and desks).

And the fees for the course don't go to me - but direct to a UK charity supporting children in Zimbabwe.

This A4 Lighter Writer Brief has all the key information
Click here or the picture to download.

Hugh Gibbons writes the PPhunnybones column
in Pharmaceutical Physician - the journal of
the British Association of Pharmaceutical Physicians.
You can see his articles and some other funnies at
his special website PPhunnybonus
  Basics of Lighter Writer  

The core is an intensive workout for up to 10 people.

This could be a team or department, or mix from any level or function.

So it would be suitable for managers and supervisors; executives; support staff; salespeople – in office, field, laboratory and other areas.

A day’s group session is reinforced by 1-to-1 coaching a few weeks afterwards, and a later recap session.

Attenders get a mix of short expert tutorials and many exercises.

The material is dozens of examples in the public domain – plus extracts of their own recent writing at work.

The workshop can also cover specific topics – such as writing for reports, proposals, and presentations big and small.

Some of the material will be available on-line before and after, in slideshow and paper form.


NB Previous courses have shown the value of using delegates’ own writing output as study material. So to generate this – and an understanding of needs - at least a week beforehand attenders will need to e-mail Hugh...

1. Their Personal Profile.  Like Hugh’s opposite, this is their short account of themselves – in fewer than 250 words. 

2. A couple of samples of their recent writing at work – for example, pages from a report, typical e-mails, or briefing.  NB This should not include anything sensitive or seriously confidential.  Hugh will extract parts for discussion.

There’ll be a little warm-up work – a good-humoured slideshow that people can work through at their own pace and place.


Suggested Arrangement of Lighter Writer



DAY1 is a collective workshop.  You’ll need a quiet room with tables, screen and laptop projection. 

The pattern is to work through a wide range of examples - some from the public domain and some from delegates' own writing.


If appropriate, it could be an intensive half-day.


DAY2 about a month later is a 1-to-1 coaching clinic on individuals’ issues.  This just needs a small room or quiet corner with a table.  You’ll need to arrange 30-40 minute appointments – maximum 5 in the morning, 5 in the afternoon.


DAY3 is around 2-3 months later, and is a reminder, refresher and AOB time.  This can be a mix of group and individual coaching as appropriate. 


These arrangements are not sacrosanct, and Hugh is happy to adapt things to company and individual needs.


Hugh was educated at King Edward’s School Birmingham and Trinity College Dublin, Hugh taught English and Economics before becoming an advertising agency copywriter.  

He then headed up creative service and product marketing teams in several healthcare companies.  Later, as Associate Editor of the Pharmaceutical Times, he was involved in heavy-duty writing, researching, interviewing and conference-organising. 

Hugh then created PsyPhaa/Ahaa – an informal association for non-psychologists like himself to get a handle on what makes people, teams and organisations tick.  The 100+ meetings became a sort of garden fence over which people of different disciplines and experience could happily chat – with an unusual mix of venues, speakers and topics. He also took part in much academic research on social psychology. 

At the same time, Hugh provided business writing and other skills courses for many organisations – among them, leading healthcare, IT, and finance companies. 

He was a regular lecturer on Medical Writing Disorders for the MSc in Pharmaceutical Medicine; and writes the PPhunnybone end column in Pharmaceutical Physician.  

Hugh is a popular public speaker, whose audiences have included social and arts clubs, charities, churches, medical societies, historical and archaeological associations, police, the RAF and Royal Navy, and many schools. 

He’s an education and media volunteer with the aid agency CAFOD.  Hugh has also developed his own one-man organisation Just1, helping social justice and good citizenship education for tens of thousands of children.

  2013 Price of Lighter Writer  

The all-in price for Lighter Writer for up to 10 people is £2013. 

The only extra is for Hugh’s travel/accommodation expenses, charged at cost.  

This course fee should be paid direct to the UK charity Ray of Light - supporting a Children’s Centre in Harare, Zimbabwe.

You can see a little more at www.rayoflightafrica.org 

They are also on Facebook at

Running a Lighter Writer course for this good cause is a warm-hearted CSR story 

You’re welcome to use it in-company or with local or other media - and Hugh can help with this if necessary.




Children go off to for schooling at the Centre in their
newly-supplied uniforms

One of the UK founders of Ray of Light with some of her
own school's pupils who raised funds for this good cause
  For further enlightenment, or to talk through a possible course, contact Hugh Gibbons hughgibbons@just1.org.uk