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15seconds 30minutes – the story of a social movement for Joy in Work

Rachel Pilling shares the story behind Joy in Work’s social movement, 15s30m, and encourages other Q members to think about how they can use this approach in their own work.

What began as a faintly ridiculous story about messy bedrooms and an irresistible urge to find another project to work together on whilst furthering our knowledge, has become the most rewarding project we are likely to ever do.

But let’s go back a bit; who are we, what do we do and what made us apply for the Sir Peter Carr Award?

We are Rachel Pilling, a consultant ophthalmologist and Dan Wadsworth, who was Deputy Head of Access at the time of applying for the award. We knew we enjoyed working together as a clinician manager team and had the same ethos: trying to make it easier for people to do great work. The opportunity to gain more experience in quality improvement – a subject we had no formal training in when we applied for the award – and a proper excuse to work together more was the stimulus to apply.

There’s something really special about a clinician-manager partnership when it works well. Gaining insights into each other’s worlds; the pressures and demands; the varied skills and experience; a complementary network and set of connections. Being able to spend time developing that has been one of the biggest pay-offs of winning the award.

So that’s who we are, but what about the idea? How did that work out? Are we more than an interesting QI project – have we, in fact, started a social movement?

15s30m encourages all staff to spend an extra 15 seconds on a task now, to save someone else 30 minutes later on, reducing frustration and increasing joy. Anyone can launch their own #15s30mMission, or run a 15s30m Workshop. There’s no knowledge or training needed – it’s all free! If you want to spread #JoyInWork then the person to start with is you!

Here’s where the real magic has happened; we’ve engaged with ‘new power’ – informal leaders who are super-connectors who bring about change from within their organisations.

Whilst numbers alone don’t tell the whole story, @15s30m has gained over 3000 Twitter followers in 18 months; we’ve attended 15 local and national events; we’ve been published in the British Medical Journal and are about to open booking for our second National 15s30m Festival which takes place on 1 November (we’d love to see you there!)

So have we created a movement? The books tell you that the sign of a successful social movement is that it moves without you. Here’s where the real magic has happened; we’ve engaged with ‘new power’ – informal leaders who are super-connectors who bring about change from within their organisations. Without us leaving our base, we are live in over 50 organisations in the UK with hundreds of workshops being delivered by our army of #15s30mHeroes.

In a handful of places we have been to visit, but usually to support an existing #15s30mHero and see the impact it has had on their teams. We are used as a tool by CQC and several Academic Health Science Networks, are part of the curriculum on a patient safety postgraduate course and have been included in this year’s NHS Horizons School4Change.

So if you want an idea to kick start your quality improvement plan for this year or need a way to get QI onto the frontline, or if you just fancy creating more Joy In Work for yourself, colleagues and patients, come and join us!

Find out more about 15s30m by visiting their website or join the Improving Joy in Work special interest group.

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