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I’ve been at a few events over the last few weeks talking about Q. Most recently I was at the North East North Cumbria where we were welcoming new members to the community. I’ve had the opportunity to really reflect on where we have come since that first co-design event in Birmingham in June 2015 (which happened to be my first day in post!).

Birmingham was the first of three co-design events that took place in the second half of 2015. The end result was incredibly rewarding with a ‘blueprint’ of how we will grow the community and the infrastructure needed to help us achieve the aims in our theory of change.

Looking back and then forward – Q is really springing to life!

Looking back and then forward – Q is really springing to life! Recruiting new members is in full swing and we are expecting around 2,000 by the end of this year. 352 new members joined last month and we are now looking for those with improvement expertise who are working or volunteering in Scotland and the North West Coast, West Midlands, Yorkshire and Humber and UCLPartners AHSN areas. My colleague Georgie is leading on this, working in partnership with these organisations.

Q wasn’t designed to be an additional project, rather provide the opportunity to progress member’s existing work and in some regard their own development.

What do members do once they join? We often say you get out what you put in with Q, and of course members will give time to Q in varying amounts, and that’s ok. Q wasn’t designed to be an additional project, rather provide the opportunity to progress member’s existing work and in some regard their own development.

The activities and opportunities are matched against four pillar themes– connect, exchange, learn and collaborate. Some of these are being led by the team at the Health Foundation, while others are being led by our partners and are more bespoke to local needs. For those who know Q well, there are areas where things clearly overlap – but in the interest of simplicity, I’ve tried to capture a ‘highlight menu’ as a prompt to members for what is available.

  • Connect – have a look and update your profile on the online directory which has all 799 members on it, join the conversation on Twitter or LinkedIn, sign up to our Randomised Coffee Trials, or for those who really enjoy taking an active role within the community – we will have Connector roles within the community (more detail to come)
  • Learn – in addition to the monthly newsletter (Q-municate) which gives a summary of opportunities, members are offering to provide talks around specific subjects at events (face to face or online). Members also have free access to online subscriptions. Our first immersive site visit takes place next month to GlaxoSmithKline, with a whole programme coming to life and regular visits throughout the year. We are also supporting the Scottish QI Connect Webinar series available to all members.
  • Exchange – we hosted our first Twitter chat (#qbookchat) a couple of weeks ago, initiated by member Heather Shearer from Scotland. This was first trailed via our LinkedIn group and we quickly learned this was not going to work on that platform and needed a more open source way for people to engage. We have created this website dedicated to Q and in a way that members can easily upload their own events, news items or blogs for others to see.
  • Collaborate – our flagship project within the Q is the Lab where we are piloting a way for people to come together to make progress on a complex problem over a 9 to 12 month period. In addition, members are self-organising and formed their own Special Interest Groups. We are looking at how we can best support these groups. There is also our Creative Approaches to Problem Solving (CAPS) cards which are self-explanatory resources to use as part of their own improvement work.

Some opportunities that definitely hit more than one of these categories are events. A community wide event will be held in Liverpool in October with more detail to come soon. We are also looking at a developmental offer for those members who want to have a more active leadership within the community.

We wanted to provide opportunities and activities in a way that members can still have an active role at shaping the future of

We wanted to provide opportunities and activities in a way that members can still have an active role at shaping the future of – so we asking members to feed in through surveys and interviews. We’re PDSAing many of these activities!

There is a lot of information here. The team are working now to make this all more clear and easier to navigate on the website. However our door is always open if you have any questions or feel free to write a comment below and we’ll get back to you.

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