Shared decision making in creating caring cultures

Sam Jones, Inspire Improvement Fellow

Hello my name is Sam Jones and I am currently an Inspire Improvement Fellow. I took part in a creative writing workshop to create this blog. We started by working in pairs to reflect on a ‘golden moment’ that we had experienced in practice. The brief from our facilitator, Jo Odell, was that we could be as creative as we wished or we could just write. Initially, we spent some time individually reflecting on a golden moment. We then shared this golden moment in our pairs and what we had created. This offered an opportunity for us to pick out, key words/points/themes and the threads of each other’s reflection (golden moment), and to provide each other with feedback. During my reflection, I had been creative and started to formulate a poem, albeit not finished at the time. I shared this with the fellow I was paired with, who felt it was something that I should continue and finish and use for my blog. This is the poem that I created.

So here it is it’s service delivery change oh yet again,
Oh lovely change you’re becoming my best friend.
So how can I implement it and what shall I do?
I guess my only thought was it simply starts with you.
So my brain is whirling and I start to think about a plan,
But I must remember what if there’s no Sam!
I need to keep talking and sharing what’s new,
So when I’m not there our team can follow it through!

Adapting our ways of working was going to be needed,
To allow for service delivery changes to be succeeded.
So I start to think of what as a team we could do,
And with a team member I shared everything that was new.
After explaining the new changes I asked what she thought,
In doing so I was facilitating her ideas to be sought.

We recognised that as a team we needed to start admission planning ahead,
Otherwise our lovely patients wouldn’t be getting a bed!
Together we formulated a grid; so we could map out our weekly admissions plan,
Development of this showed that collaborative working had began.
I said that together could we share this admission grid with all of our team,
Saying we’d need to explain the concept and what it would mean.

So the following Monday she approaches me quite quiet and seemed a bit meek,
Expressing she hadn’t seen the admission plan for this current week.
She hoped I didn’t mind but with our team they’d formulated this week’s admissions plan,
Not only had she done it but shed shared its concept and developed it with the rest of our clan!
I thanked her and gave praise for sharing, completing it and acknowledged all she had done,
A golden moment demonstrating my facilitated leadership skills, my heart simply sung!
So if you’ve a service delivery challenge or practice problem to solve,
Work collaboratively with your team and watch it evolve.

A key component of creating a caring culture is around shared decision making and how, as leaders, we need to facilitate this. Team members are often better placed to find solutions in their areas as they are experts in their own field. Therefore leaders need to facilitate collaboration, participation and inclusion within the team to enable shared decisions to be made. This will allow team members to feel valued, promote good team work along with fostering better outcomes for patients. I hope that having read my poem it represents how I achieved this in our team.

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