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Quality Improvement Consultant & Coach Lisa Knight shares her improvement story. She also invites people to join the new Q Special Interest Group she is convening on ‘QI in Mental Health’.

How – and why – did you first get involved in improvement; and what has been your journey since then?
An RMN by background, I wanted to expand the focus of my work and its impact. I moved in to Research & Development – working mainly on service evaluation and development projects. From there I realised that I was drawn to the change and improvement elements of the work and have actively worked in Quality Improvement for over 13 years now. I’m passionate about supporting people to achieve change, and I’m always learning from the work I do – so I’m never in danger of getting bored!

What most inspires you professionally?
Tenacity and positivity; often in challenging contexts.

A few lessons learnt on the same theme really: engagement, engagement, engagement.

Can you share a hard-won lesson you’ve learnt about what makes for a successful (or unsuccessful) improvement project.
A few lessons learnt on the same theme really: engagement, engagement, engagement. Projects that have been the most successful have meaningful engagement of the people making the changes. It’s often easy to say “we will engage all staff” but given the complexity of people, organisations, and change in general, it’s rarely an easy thing to do.

What change could we make that would do most to embed continuous improvement in health and care?
Not sure I can pinpoint just one thing, but the development of a culture that supports low-risk small scale improvement.

To learn, to share, to be part of the wider conversation about quality improvement

Where staff members could test out ideas for improvement in their own practice, team, or department without pressure to achieve a particular outcome. Inspiring and celebrating idea generation, testing and sharing.

Why did you join Q?
To learn, to share, to be part of the wider conversation about quality improvement and where it’s heading.

Can you tell us about something you’re currently working on – that Q members might be able to contribute to.
I’m convening a Q Special Interest Group on QI in Mental Health – hoping to share ideas, best practice and develop potential collaborations. If you want to join in, please do!

Links
– Read more about the QI in Mental Health SIG here – and contact Lisa to join.
– Follow Lisa on Twitter: twitter.com/QIPearl

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