Sincere thanks must go to the Florence Nightingale Foundation and Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England for making this Scholarship possible for me. My thanks also to Ruth May, Executive Director of Nursing, NHS Improvement for her time and guidance. For their enduring support and sage advice my thanks go to Professor Maggie Boyd, Clinical Quality Director and Mark Cubbon, Chief Operating Officer at NHS Improvement. My thanks must also go to Peter Blythin, formerly the Director of Nursing at the NHS Trust Development Authority. I must also thank my colleagues in Midlands and East region who have covered my work and waved me off on many courses during the last year, your patience has been appreciated and will be reciprocated. Because of this Scholarship, I am indebted, grateful, refreshed, developed and renewed, thank you all.
The Scholarship year has been remarkable and has helped me to unlock my full potential into areas of leadership advancement that I didn’t know were available to me. This report will summarise the breadth and depth of learning that I’ve been exposed to and has been absorbed and assimilated, most of which has been put into practice and used on a daily basis. The report will cover the personal impact of the various learning experiences from Harvard and Cranfield Universities, coaching and organisational development to move me forwards into the space of a holistic and calm leader for nursing and health in today’s NHS. The report will explain the genesis and the impact of the immersion experience at the Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle which provided time for me to experience a hospital where quality improvement is truly applied in daily practice from ward to board.
The patient care project for the Scholarship was borne out of my continuing work with NHS trusts in special measures and the need to immerse myself in a positive and quality focussed healthcare environment and taking that learning and including it into a regional wide development for trusts in special measures and providing a framework for development which is currently being developed and refined; the output to date is my contribution to initiate the pilot for Midlands and East and working with the quality intelligence team to develop a dynamic data tool highlighting the key markers that indicate whether an organisation is improving or whether interventions need to occur. My learning from the Scholarship year also plays into the approach that I take and encourage the wider team to adopt when being sensitive to changes in board behaviours, receptiveness and approaches to supporting sustained development.
This report covers the impact of the learning and development during the Scholarship year. I have learned aspects of leadership that I didn’t know needed developing in me. The depth and breadth of the learning has heavily impacted on me and now provides me with additional skills and approaches to be a more confident leader and a leader that will continue to grow. After experiencing such an impactful development year, often an immediate change in job is expected by others. If the right job comes along then I may consider it, but I’m not going to make any drastic changes, but what I am happy with is that I can continue to improve the way I interact, communicate, value and develop others in my current role based on the learning I have been exposed to.
I have greatly benefited from a vast array of learning during the last year, a very privileged position, but I have been actively role modelling my new learning with regard to behaviours and approaches, perspectives on struggling organisations, coaching, developing and supporting colleagues and leading differently. I have arranged to cascade the key learning to colleagues at team meetings with a focus on the transferrable concepts experienced at the Virginia Mason Medical Center.