I hope all of you would recognise that one of the key priorities of the Trust over the last two years has been, and continues to be, staff engagement.
There are many reasons for this. The culture of an organisation is its most important feature; if we exhibit the values that we promote, staff, patients and the public will have a better experience of the Trust. We know that happier staff are healthier, and healthcare employees who are more engaged with, and rewarded by, their jobs are more likely to provide higher quality care.
An engaged workforce will also give us the answers to the challenges we face as we journey from ‘Good’ to ‘Outstanding’. I was given a really important reminder of this last week. Whilst on the wards at Stoke Mandeville with the Chief Nurse, a chance encounter with one of the ward sisters prompted us to think differently about some creative solutions to one of our patient flow problems. I am a strong believer that problems are never solved in the Board room; solutions will always come from those who face the challenges directly.
Feedback is a gift; my view is that you should always say ‘thank you’ for receiving it, even if the message is one you don’t want to hear! Time is also our most valuable commodity and spending it finding solutions to clinical or administrative challenges is an effective use of it. In a world where we often have too much to do, I think perhaps understandably this is easy to forget.
Leadership is not defined by doing great things, but by creating the environment within which great things happen. This is the environment we should all be trying to create at BHT.
As always, delighted to hear any comments or your thoughts.