Fiona Dalton, CEO

Chief executive's blog - 16 June 2014

In my personal blog, I will keep you up to date on what is happening at the Trust, sharing what I think we are doing well and what we can improve.

Fiona Dalton, chief executive

I often think about the challenges of seeing a situation from other people’s perspective. We talk about walking in other people’s shoes, or seeing a problem through someone else’s eyes: it sounds easy but it can be a real challenge to move beyond our own emotion, attitudes, priorities and prejudices.

Our recent diversity conference was a good reminder of the diversity of staff and patients within the hospital - and the real strength of this diversity in helping to bring different perspectives, ideas and solutions to our problems.

I think the challenge of leadership is to see a problem from everyone’s perspective - and often that means different teams and professional groups within the hospital, as well as other organisations across health and social care. But at the same time we must keep the most important perspective - the patient’s - uppermost in our mind.

Last week I heard about some great examples of this from a group of foundation year one doctors. They had been given the challenge of following a patient’s journey, and writing it up from the patient’s perspective, as a starting point for quality improvement. It was brilliantly done - listening to the presentations, I felt the loneliness of the newly diagnosed cancer patient in hospital over the weekend, waiting for visiting time to see his family, and I heard the voice of the confused emergency patient who explained that they were taken to a noisy ward, and then moved to a quiet ward.

But above all I saw the enthusiasm and commitment of the most newly qualified doctors in the hospital. It was a privilege to talk to them about some of the issues they raised, and how we could address them. And I do hope that many of them chose to continue their careers at Southampton, because their energy and insight is what our patients deserve.

Thank you.

Fiona Dalton


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