"Leadership isn't a swear word": This week's leadership message comes from Head of Communications, Joy Hale

I’m really grateful to follow in the footsteps of some fantastic colleagues who have reflected on a lot of aspects about this Trust that I wholeheartedly agreed with.

I have been in the Communications team for 10 years. Celebrating this recent milestone made me think about how much things have changed since I wandered into the Chelmsford Orchards office in 2007, not knowing what a Red 1 call was and having to triple check how to spell ‘defibrillator’ (I still have to do that latter one now).

Fast forward a decade and leadership isn’t a swear word, we have hundreds of new patient-facing colleagues, and I’ve got more wrinkles. We have an All Women in East group, spearheaded by some motivated colleagues who want to support improved employee experience, and the way the environment impacts on lives in and outside of work. Our visions and values – care, quality, honesty, respect and teamwork – are demonstrated every day by people around us.

During this time, I’ve also been motivated and inspired by many people – a big part of leadership is to have those two qualities, but they probably don’t think of themselves as demonstrating that. They come up with ideas, they recognise things that are wrong, they think about the bigger picture, and they are honest with me about things I need to know.

A couple of weeks ago, I attended a talk by explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, and he is the ultimate leader when you think about the expeditions he has put himself through in the most extreme environments. He believes that what drives us every day, what motivates us and shapes leaders, is borne from our childhood. It might not necessarily be an event or moment in those formative years, but a certain something that inherently makes us choose what we do and why. If you’re a bit stuck at the moment as to what motivates you, it might be worth remembering what 10-year-old you was being motivated by and whether the adult you can tap into it. Was it a family situation? The support of a relative? Something new you learnt and never wanted to let go?

For Sir Fiennes, his late wife of 40 years was by far the catalyst for his ambitions and achievements. Family and friends are as much a part of our motivation as anything, and this is really overlooked by many of us. The pressure I put on myself to deliver communications for the Trust that is worth doing and will have a benefit either tomorrow or in a years’ time can be stressful - without people to talk to, I don’t know where I’d be and our colleagues are part of that support network, so thank you to everyone who has helped me.

That’s more than enough navel-gazing from me – I hope you have a good day, and please remember to comment below or get in touch at joy.hale@eastamb.nhs.uk if there’s something we can do for you.

Published 20th July, 2017



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