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The Strategic Leadership Programme: helping hospice leaders face the future with confidence

Author: Steve Dewar
31 July 2017

The Strategic Leadership Programme for leaders is a bespoke programme created in partnership between Hospice UK and The Westcott Group. Bookings for the autumn of 2017 are open. Steve Dewar, one of the programme facilitators, tells us more.<br />

In designing the programme we wanted to acknowledge that the landscape for hospice leaders is complex and challenging.  We know the majority of hospices have seen their statutory funding remain static or fall.  We appreciate the demand for end of life care is predicted to increase significantly.  We understand the way the NHS and local authorities are urging local leaders to develop end of life care systems that are integrated, accessible, systematic and responsive to the needs of the dying, their loved ones and the bereaved. We wanted to design a programme to help leaders work with these realities”.

To meet these challenges, hospice leaders need a coherent story about the role of hospices in the future, the capacity to develop new systems of care and the ability to lead complex change. Strengthening the leadership of hospice care is one of five key steps identified by the Commission into the Future of Hospice Care  to ensure that hospices are fit for the future.  The Commission cites “the importance of developing leadership for a new era in order that hospices can serve as major players and influencers within the larger health and social care system and in local communities.”

The programme will introduce you to a wide range of tools and approaches to leadership. This will include an exploration of how to understand organisations and how to approach the difficulties of managing change and shaping organisational culture.

It will also help you understand your own preferences in relation to change, and to consider new approaches to your effectiveness in building constructive relationships as well as organisational partnerships and collaborations.

The programme has been warmly received by participants in the first and second cohort. Sian Cole, Director of Care Services, Longfield , said:

"The programme and the exposure to others working in similar settings (many of them facing the same challenges that I do) have given me lots of thoughts, skills and ideas on how I can be a more effective leader. It has positively thrown the spotlight onto our organisation and prompted me to raise some key questions about our priorities, culture and focus”.  

Andy Goldsmith, Chief Executive at Hope House  appreciated the support. He said:

"If you want a course that gives you skills, knowledge and shared expertise to be a strategic leader in the hospice movement then commit to it, apply the learning during the programme and see it through. I do not think you will be disappointed”.

The team is knowledgeable about the hospice world and aware of the leadership challenge for a sector that has significant challenges as well as enormous opportunities. As Val Stangoe, Chief Executive at St Mary’s Hospice in  Ulverston put it:

“I would have to think about what it was precisely that made this the best leadership training I have experienced… I think though my main benefit came from the input of the facilitators who I found extremely skilled, insightful and generous”.  

The next cohort will join the programme in September 2017.

Make your booking now for a highly interactive, exciting and worthwhile development opportunity.

For more information and booking information visit Hospice UK’s Masterclasses and Workshops and The Westcott Group

You can hear more from Steve Dewar at Hospice UK’s national conference ‘Leading, Learning and Innovating’ (22-24 November 2017 in Liverpool) when he will be one of three speakers in a parallel session on leadership

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