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When I applied to become a Q member, I never imagined that I would find myself stamping my feet, clapping and struggling to count to three! Yet that is exactly what I found myself doing in the first workshop at the KSS Q welcome event.

You may be wondering why someone who can’t count to three was accepted to Q, but in reality, the workshop was just challenging us to think differently about how we communicate.

Working in the NHS for nearly 20 years, it’s almost impossible not to get ingrained in your approach to work, but as this exercise at the Q welcome event showed, it is possible to find new ways of using your brain – even if means losing the ability to count!

Looking back on the day, it represented everything that I hoped to get out of Q and more.

Why Q?

I attended a national Q event last year, and was impressed to see how it brought people involved with improvement together to problem solve, share ideas and learn – so I was keen to apply to become part of the Q network.

We are often all working on similar problems and encounter similar issues, so being able link with others, both locally and from across the country to see what is working and what isn’t, would be fantastic.

As well as helping me to develop as an individual, I hoped Q would also help me in my role as an improvement manager, and that I could share my experiences to benefit others.

For me, it became very evident that the strength of Q is all about its connections and the ethos of, if I can’t help, I know someone that can! 

The benefit of sharing of my experience started on day one, although who would’ve thought that telling people I could play the clarinet would benefit my fellow Q members – a fact which only makes sense to those who attended the event!

What next?

Although the day was a lot of fun, some of the key learning for me was to think about how we communicate and influence others effectively, and how we maintain our resilience to achieve what we are trying to do despite the stresses and messiness of life. This can be especially important if you feel like you are a lone voice of improvement.

For me, it became very evident that the strength of Q is all about its connections and the ethos of, if I can’t help, I know someone that can!

It felt very satisfying to begin my Q journey making three different “Q connections” on the day itself by linking Q members with others that could help them. There are no expectations of you from Q but the day demonstrated that the more you put in, the more you will get back and I have already signed up to the Randomised Coffee Trials.

There was an overwhelming feeling that “you were no longer that lone voice”

I think what struck me most about the day was the amount of enthusiasm, positive energy and passion that was in the room – it was infectious. There was an overwhelming feeling that “you were no longer that lone voice” and through the Q network, together we can discover solutions to the challenges and deliver real improvement. I left feeling like I could conquer the world…with the help of my fellow Qs, and I am looking forward to making more Q connections at future meetings!

 

Kent Surrey and Sussex AHSN have produced a lovely video of the day, including highlights from some of the Q members at the event.

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