Leadership, learning and development: an update from Lindsey Stafford-Scott, Director of People and Culture (9th February)

Lindsey Stafford Scott   web

One of the themes that has been repeatedly highlighted to me since I joined the Trust last year is leadership. You have told us about the importance of having supportive leaders through the cultural audit, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has told us of the need to better develop and support our leaders, and this week at the Ambulance Leadership Forum we have consistently heard about the value of good leadership.

Leadership means many things to each and every one of us; and it is something that needs to run through the organisation - from the boardroom to our ambulance bays.

Over the last year we have piloted a leadership development course for some of our duty locality officers and band 7 managers, which has been well received. I attended the celebration of learning event for the first cohort and was amazed at the value delegates had got from the programme and the benefits this was having for the people they lead. We are in the fantastic position of having a stable substantive executive team for the first time in years, and have started on some leadership development work with the senior leadership team (including developing our leadership charter which will set out the leadership values and behaviours we will promote and support). 

This year will see the launch of our first leadership strategy and this will include how we will roll out leadership development opportunities across the organisation over the next few years. In that strategy, we will have a specific focus on developing programmes to support more black and minority ethnic (BME) and female colleagues into leadership roles to address our current underrepresentation.

We have some great people and managers but it is clear to me that we have not always supported them or helped them develop to their potential. That, and the constant demands of working in a time-pressured service like ours, means we have not helped people achieve their true potential. And this is something that we are determined to unlock – not just those leaders we have got now, but spotting those with exceptional skills and abilities who will be the future leaders of our ambulance service.

We will also be reviewing how we mentor our students and our newly qualified paramedics, and what better support we can offer them. At the same time we are working to implement the new national paramedic banding agreement that was announced just before Christmas. We will be publishing more information about this on Need to Know shortly.

Turning to other matters, I hope you had the chance to read the article last week on the working time regulations or the bulletin that was sent out this week. This is really important to protect your health and safety and ensure we comply with the Health and safety executive requirements.

Please take the time to read this as we have changed the process for recording incidental overtime caused by late finishes and have a new time sheet in place.These are interim measures as we move to introduce electronic timesheets. Accurately recording working time is not only the right thing for us to do to ensure you’re not working excessive hours and are getting the breaks between work that you need, but it is also a legal requirement.You can find out more information by asking your line manager, looking at the information on East24, or reading the bulletin.

I continue to be amazed by the incredible passion and commitment that you demonstrate on a daily basis in very difficult circumstances. The compassion and care you show our patients and each other is inspiring and we will seek to reflect and support that in all that we do in developing our inclusive and supportive culture. You have even inspired me to sign up for training as a community first responder (CFR) so I can do my bit to support our service!  Watch this space for more details.


Published 9th February, 2017

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