Inspiring colleagues internationally!

Jo Odell, FoNS Practice Development Facilitator

On the 18th May I travelled to the lovely city of Copenhagen, Denmark with two Inspire Improvement Fellows Ryan Rukas and Amanda Baker. We had been invited by Professor Bibi Hølge-Hazelton, Director of Nursing Research, University Hospital Zealand and her team to contribute to a conference they had organised for 100 ward leaders in Roskilde, Denmark.

Our original contact had been at the Enhancing Practice Conference in Basel, in August 2018 where I talked about the Inspire Improvement Fellowship Programme and the preliminary outcomes for the fellows. This led onto emails and then virtual meetings to discuss how FoNS could support the work that Bibi was leading in collaboration with ward leaders across her organisation ‘to develop ward managers’ leadership skills, awareness of research and their role to be ‘curious’’.

The day arrived and the conference was well attended by local ward/ clinical leaders and some also travelled from across Denmark to attend. The morning of the conference was dedicated to presentations in Danish including the two wards leaders who had led a series of engagement events to understand ward leaders’ needs, which had led to the holding of the conference itself. The English contingent followed in the afternoon. Thankfully, everyone spoke very good English as my Danish was very lacking! Ryan and Amanda shared what they had achieved with the support of the fellowship and I introduced the Creating Caring Cultures framework and resources, which underpin the programme. We also facilitated a workshop using a workplace visioning exercise and an assessment of facilitative leadership skills, for all the participants. This was possible by setting the room up in café style and allowing participants to hold some structured dialogue at their tables (max 10 people per table) facilitated by Ryan, Amanda and several Danish colleagues.

It was great to be able to inspire ward leaders internationally using the Creating Caring Cultures resources and also to share Ryan and Amanda’s experiences of using the resources in practice and sharing the positive results.

Here is a selection of feedback from the participant evaluation (kindly provided by Bibi and her team):

What was your most important learning from the conference?

  • To ask staff members ‘what’s it like to work round here?’ e.g. by using picture cards
  • Inspiration to use reflective diaries
  • The presentation from the Inspire Improvement Fellowship Programme was incredibly interesting, likewise the dialogue/picture cards
  • To focus on the facilitator role
  • To be innovative and not scared to try out new ideas in our work as leaders
  • To remember to be creative. To be reflective and talk about practice, and to cooperate in a variety of ways.
  • That culture is important to development

Inspire Improvement is supported by the Burdett Trust for Nursing

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