Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Simplicity Blog - The End

After five and a half years I’ve decided to suspend my precious Simplicity Blog. Right now and for the foreseeable future I’m simply too busy to dedicate the time that Simplicity Blog deserves.

I’ve always taken great pride in writing (hopefully) interesting and regular postings and I just can’t stand the thought of staggering along with rare postings every few weeks. That just doesn't fit the image of Simplicity Blog because I’ve always loved our dynamic discussions. I think it has provided interest and - dare I suggest - even entertainment for readers.

It has been an absolute pleasure for me to write a total of 1071 posts to my Simplicity Blog since January 2005 and from links I’ve made through comments I now have long standing friendships with many people from all over the world.

Always keep it simple my friends -
Bye for now!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

UK is the best place to die

I've just come across a fascinating article called "The Quality of Death: Ranking End-of-Life Care Across the World"

Dying is something not many of us really want to think about but it is surely reassuring to know the UK has come out on top when ranking 40 countries on the quality of death. It seems the UK is the ‘best’ place to die. Dying is one of those subjects that feels a bit taboo - even to write about but I suppose we all need to lobby for 'service excellence' in the delivery of care for people who are coming to the end of their lives.

I spent three years of my healthcare career based in a hospice. I found the front line folks who work directly with the patient and their family in end of life care to be totally inspirational.

Click here to read the report

Friday, July 09, 2010

Doctors and Leadership

Fascinating stuff about doctors in leadership positions currently in the news. Here are some random ‘Trevor’ thoughts.

In my experience the best combination for the leadership of any healthcare organisation has two key elements.

FIRSTLY a doctor who is committed and interested in the leadership and management functions (but most important is still in touch with clinical practice - i.e. still meets patients!)

SECONDLY that doctor is supported by a manager who takes care of the detail.

In various leadership positions during my healthcare career I loved working alongside a doctor. Doctors in leadership positions, supported by good management make things happen.

Doctors carry far more influence than managers with their medical colleagues.

In an unhealthy manager-doctor relationship there will be a gulf between the manager and the doctor. Often, I’m sad to say, because of ego ‘competition’ about who is the leader.

The best managers recognise the doctor is the politically important figure and the manager role is a supportive one.

When I worked alongside a doctor who was leader, whenever I had a controversial thing to do I would always ‘use’ the doctor to help me get the message over to other medical staff.

Here is some revolutionary thinking for you – guess what?

Doctors take more notice of Doctors.

Some managers try to ‘take on’ doctors as if it is some sort of battle and the manager invariably loses that war.

I always took the view that my role as the manager was to facilitate change; implement plans and strategies; in summary make things happen. The doctor took the leadership/visionary role.

Despite what some managers like to believe, the REALITY is that doctors wield the most power, politically in healthcare.

When I worked in a management role with a doctor interested in the leadership management thing I cherished him/her and kept him/her happy by getting on with the detailed stuff of management while supporting the doc to make key leadership decisions.

Doctors are no different than the rest of us; they have exactly the same issues. If managers just get alongside them; take some time to get to know them; and work with them, there are so many win-win situations. I’ve seen managers fall on their sword because they didn’t understand this simplicity.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

My FINAL word on England's World Cup Disaster

I look at the way Germany has developed a young team by blooding youngsters and I’m convinced it’s the only way we can go.

We can learn so much from the fantastic German professionalism. When do we ever hear of player indiscipline and scandals regarding German players like the stuff we constantly read about England players? – Never is my best guess!

It seems to me our players are more interested in the glamour side of football and the spin offs rather than getting their heads down and playing for the team.

There is no ‘hunger’ in our England players it seems to me.

Sir Alex Ferguson always talks about the need for Manchester United players to have hunger. Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville are perfect examples. They have all played at the very top level for Ferguson at United for almost 20 years now and they are still ‘hungry’ despite being in their mid-30’s.

We hear Harry Redknapp on radio yesterday telling us that too many young players today are not prepared to put in the effort to keep ‘up there’ after they get some recognition.

So I come back to my suggestion that we get rid of all the dead wood in the England team – those senior players like Lampard, Gerrard, Terry, Barry, Crouch, Carragher, Heskey and Ashley Cole all have to go - NOW. They are not going to be around in 2018 when we need a top class ‘TOGETHER’ team if we are going to seriously challenge for the World Cup - especially if the tournament is held in this country.

We should keep Wayne Rooney – make him Captain - and also keep Joe Cole who is clearly a committed player. Build the team around those two experienced players and pack the team with keen hungry young players building for 2018.

We can learn an awful lot from the German approach about where we go from here. The evidence is clear – Germany thrashed England and they thrashed Argentina with a bunch of young players who are hungry. They have grown up together and they play for each other – they play with a smile on their faces – clearly they enjoy it.

Sadly the entire England team do not look hungry or happy – they look over fed and lacking in the dedication the Germans exude!