Case Study – Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (BFWH) Future Leaders Programme

Developing Future Leaders

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (BFWH) invests in finding ‘the leaders of tomorrow’ to ensure it continues to deliver in all areas in these ever-challenging times.

The Trust has always had a senior leadership programme in place, to support and develop its leaders to deliver services and look after staff, but in 2016 it launched a five year organisational strategy, which required it to develop future leaders with the competencies to play a key role in delivering it.

The Background

Since the launch of their strategy, the Trust has used a more targeted approach to finding the talent pool of employees who would become part of its succession plan, and to carefully identifying those employees who would become part of its Trust Talent Management and Succession Planning Framework. Using this Framework, the Trust’s ultimate objective is to be a clinically led organisation with leaders that live its values and one that is truly collaborative, where engagement, participation and involvement become its core leadership approach.

Having attended several of The Oakridge Centre's Talent Management Think Tanks and Leadership Forums and having been impressed with their informative and interactive content, BFWH asked the The Oakridge Centre team to join a competitive tender to provide its next stage Senior Collaborative Leadership Programme.

The Trust’s brief was to provide the ‘leaders of tomorrow’ with the opportunity to develop their strategic leadership knowledge and skills, and to strengthen their capacity to lead with care and compassion, while engaging teams and delivering results in challenging times.

The Oakridge Centre won the three-year contract to provide leadership training because it was able to provide a bespoke and interactive programme for the Trust, with every part of it focusing on its organisational strategy.

Our Approach

The Oakridge Centre's Senior Associate, Anna White, developed a bespoke Senior Collaborative Leadership Programme to meet the specifi c needs of BFWH. It involves one programme per year for three years, with the fi rst cohort of 12 senior clinical and non-clinical leaders given the opportunity to develop their leadership potential with The Oakridge Centre starting in April 2017, with monthly sessions thereafter.

The learning modules included a launch session to explain the programme’s aims and objectives, design and content.

A further nine sessions, each with their own objectives, covered the Trust’s vision, strategy and objectives; understanding the evolving landscape of the NHS; being at my best as leader; quality improvement; taking people with you through change; stakeholder management and engagement; the manager as coach; strategic human resource management and developing and maintaining business acumen’.

Other elements built into the programme included three applied learning sessions involving peer coaching and 360-degree feedback, with additional coaching made available to selected delegates.

Each delegate also worked on a change project during the duration of the programme, enabling them to put their learning into practice whilst bringing benefi t to their area.

A final ‘celebration event’ session included presentations to the Board, which allowed delegates to share and feedback the outcomes of their change projects and the overall programme.

The Results

Positive feedback has been received from delegates on the programme, who are looking forward to using their learnings. Such was the success of the programme that the Trust chose to include delegates from the Blackpool and Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Groups in the next cohort which is now underway. This supports the partnership approach which is essential for delivering successful integrated care on the Fylde Coast.

The Oakridge Centre has continued to support Future Leaders programmes with Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

The Oakridge Centre Feedback

"It has been a real privilege to work with such talented individuals who are so passionate about their role in the Trust and about the NHS. Everyone on the programme put so much into it and, I think, got a lot out of it in return. We owe a great deal of the programme's success to the commitment of its sponsor, Dr Andrea Whitfield, and also to the unfailing support of Sharon Adams and Sam Landon in the Workforce and Organisational Development Team."

Anna White, Senior Associate

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust Feedback

“I’m delighted to work with Anna and The Oakridge Centre team on our Senior Collaborative Leadership Programme. Some years ago, we decided that we wanted to give the most senior people in our organisation the opportunity to develop their leadership skills together in a safe and supportive environment, recognising that we wanted our Trust to be clinically led. We saw the value of senior clinicians and senior managers learning from and talking with each other, building a community of practice with quality and safety at the centre. Anna has supported us to further develop this, enabling colleagues to lead effectively and meet the challenges that we encounter on a daily basis as we strive to ensure excellence in the care that we provide for our population and our staff. We continue to receive fantastic feedback from colleagues who have attended the programme and great examples of quality improvement activities that have really made a difference."

Dr Andrea Whitfield, Associate Medical Director Leadership and Engagement and Consultant Palliative Medicine at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

"The Oakridge Centre has provided a fantastic, bespoke programme that integrates clinical and non-clinical leaders and where all the modules tie in with our five-year strategy. The first cohort was a great success and we had very positive feedback not only about the theory, but also the practical applications of the learnings, which delegates found extremely useful. As a forerunner to be an Integrated Care Partnership, we have invited colleagues from the Clinical Commissioning Groups to join our next cohort, as we continue to work in true collaboration when choosing where care takes place.”

Jane Meek, Deputy Director of Workforce Education and Organisational Development at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

“The whole programme was interesting and worth the time and effort that everyone put into it. It has opened my eyes to the additional complexities of the NHS – I’m just glad it was Anna who took us through it. Excellent.”

Dawn Goodall, Trust Solicitor

“It has given me confidence to work at a strategic level. I am a more confident leader and this will instil confidence in my team.”

Sharon Mawdsley, Lead Infection Prevention Nurse at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust