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Friday 28th October 2016

Effective leadership

26th August 2009

Writing for Nursing Times, Julie Burgess, chief executive of Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, says that effective leadership means listening to staff.


The failures of care at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust have rightly received a lot of air time, but it is now time to move on.

But rather than forget, we must ensure we have reflected on ways of working and put in place the appropriate changes we feel are needed.

As I read the report into the failings, and particularly the sections on nursing, I felt upset that my profession was being talked about in this way.

Not all staff are bad, there a good people at the trust delivering high standards of care.

The distress I have seen among colleagues made me realise that as managers, we must support the people who work in organisations that have been in the public spotlight and not judge them.

We need to challenge our working practices to make improvements in care and challenge things that do not feel right.

I know from personal experience how frightening being a whistleblower can be but having the courage to tell the truth is vital.

The revelations about Mid Staffs have made me assess how I function as a leader.

I need to listen to all views, analyse information in front of me and act to change and I know that if I am to be an effective leader I have to challenge myself to work to these standards.

Active hearing is the best key I have to improving services in my organisation.


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