Every few weeks, I send a message by email to the LFE community mailing list. I’ve been doing this for several years, and it recently occurred to me that these messages could be shared as blog posts. So, here is the latest message – others to follow in due course:
Date of email, 10th March 2023:
To members of the LFE community of practice:
I hope you are well. It feels as if the ever-burgeoning demand for access to healthcare has abated very slightly (after an extremely busy winter), but we continue to face huge challenges. The widespread industrial action from healthcare workers is indicative of significant dissatisfaction: the winter of discontent continues. Indeed, the key finding of “decline in certain markers of staff experience” in the recently published NHS Staff Survey comes as no great surprise: Details here if you are interested: NHS Staff Survey 2022: key findings | NHS Employers
Growth and spread of LFE:
Meanwhile, I / we continue to work on LFE – through day to day practical management (we have thousands of reports in BWC, approximately 20-30 / day across the site); whilst also trying to support implementation in other settings. I’m delighted to hear of significant success with LFE outside the NHS too – Norway and Canada are doing particularly well! I am often asked about the enablers and barriers to LFE implementation: the short answer is that I think it is complex. This paper pointed to some of the answers, but it remains an open question: Impact of the ‘Learning from Excellence’ programme in NHS trusts: an exploratory study | British Journal of Healthcare Management (magonlinelibrary.com) Any thoughts on that would be welcome! One thing I am certain about is that ‘leadership’ is important – without senior buy-in, the initiative will get nowhere.
Some reading which you might like:
As usual, I write with some suggestions for reading. This article in the Harvard Business Review describes an initiative in which colleagues were encouraged to write short notes of appreciation to one another in order to highlight strengths. The resulting impact on performance and morale is positive, and adds more weight to the underling logic of LFE. Notes of Appreciation Can Boost Individual and Team Morale (hbr.org) This article in the same journal on the same topic has given me pause for thought. Of particular interest is the question about whether positive feedback should be given in public or in private. I’ve always favoured the latter for LFE reports, but the evidence is interestingly quite mixed. Read the article here: Research: A Little Recognition Can Provide a Big Morale Boost (hbr.org)
Coming back to healthcare, here is an interesting review cautiously pointing towards a positive link between staff engagement (which we know is linked to recognition / positive feedback) and patient safety: The Association Between Health Care Staff Engagement and Patient Safety Outcomes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis – PubMed (nih.gov)
Any thoughts on the above would be very welcome! I have plenty more to share for those interested in a deeper dive.
Save the date for the next conference:
Meanwhile, the planning is underway for #LFE5 – we have set a date for Nov 10th 2023. Venue and details to be announced, but we are working on the content and really hoping that we can convene a face-to-face meeting (with virtual access for overseas friends and colleagues). Our initial idea for the theme was “Interdependence”, building on a strong theme from our conversation with Alex Gillespie https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/learningfromexcellence/episodes/Episode-3-Alex-Gillespie-on-compliments-in-healthcare–gratitude–leadership–and-interdependence-e1cp58v/a-a7asjj7. But we are now favouring a new, related theme based on reflections on working in healthcare: “Hope“. Please spread the news about the date – I’ve attached a save the date flyer:
LFE Community zoom call:
And finally, I have set aside an hour for another LFE community zoom call – 3rd April 12pm. If you would like to attend, please let me know and I will send a zoom link. No particular agenda – I would like to keep this one informal and open to hear your thoughts, and to share some ideas.