The Value of Values by Julie Booth

Julie B 1Fred Lee’s book “If Disney ran your hospital 9 ½ things you would differently” argues that nobody has ‘moved the cheese’ when it comes to things that matter most to the patient or what motivates and keeps good employees. Whilst healthcare can’t be compared to Disney there is no denying that as an organisation it is amongst the top in providing excellent service to its guests

With that statement in mind let my first blog begin.

Julie B 2Its hard to imagine a more magical place than Walt Disney World, yet its secret is not magic pixie dust. It is its well trained, enthusiastic and motivated workforce.

 As Walt Disney himself realized

 “you can dream, create and design the most wonderful place in the world, but it takes people to make the dream a reality”.

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Whilst there is no doubt that the patient is at the centre of healthcare, I had the notion that as we prepare to “create and design the most the wonderful place “ in the form the new Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary, it would be an opportunity to reflect on our own values and behaviours.

Within NHS Dumfries and Galloway there is no disputing that we have an excellent workforce that, combined, have thousands of years of service. Yet time marches on (even though in my head I still think I am in my twenties) and this workforce is diminishing through retirements. So how do we ensure that the future workforce that we are recruiting continues this legacy? 

The high profile case of care failure at Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust and the subsequent Francis Report that followed, focused on the quality of care. Within the Francis Report the importance of  values ismentioned no fewer than 49 times. Although it contained a raft of recommendations one key area commented on was that staff recruited into the NHS should have their values and behaviours tested.

Driven by the need to ensure quality care and person centred outcomes there has been a huge increase in the concept of values based recruitment. 

Values based recruitment (VBR) is defined as an approach which attracts and selects employees on the basis that their individual values and behaviours align with the values of the NHS constitution. VBR is about using a range of tools and techniques to help employee recruit staff who have the right attitudes and values for the job.

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Julie B 5Now where does Disney fit into this? At Disney they audition prospective staff. This starts with a pre interview process which clearly outlines Disney’s expectations of its future employees (or cast members as they are known) which align with its core values. It is at this stage some prospective candidates withdraw from the face to face interview process.

So how did I get so absorbed with values and standards. Over a year ago as part of a development project which linked to various initiatives such as the 15 Steps Campaign and Leading Excellence in Care as a team we developed our ward based values and standards

The starting point was asking three simple questions:

What did the ward look like?

What did the ward feel like?

What did the ward sound like?

Julie B 6The responses from everyone were then framed around the Healthcare Quality Strategy for NHS Scotland  

The purpose of these values and standards is to enable us as a team to have a framework for behaviour within our ward which will empower staff to take action and challenge poor behaviours. It has been interesting whilst researching the initial project and for this blog that various NHS and healthcare organisations are moving to developing their own set of values and behaviours.

Given that 50% of complaints received in the NHS involve issues with attitude and behaviour is it time that we reflect on our own attitudes and behaviours!

I will end this blog on the following quotes

“Much of what needs to be done does not require additional financial resources, but changes in attitudes, culture, values and behaviour”. (Francis, 2013)

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 Julie Booth is the Senior Charge Nurse on Ward 3 Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary





9 thoughts on “The Value of Values by Julie Booth

  1. I liked the question ‘what did the ward sound like’ reminded me of being an inpatient and one nursing member bursting into song at around 11pm -beautiful voice – but not when you are trying to go to sleep!!

  2. Well done Julie , values based reflection and standards that are endorsed by staff is a win ,win. Great blog , spreading the benefits if your senior experience.

  3. Excellent blog Julie, well done. I’d love to hear more about your work creating your teams ‘framework’ for behavior, as I am sure would others- ,maybe something we could have a chat about?

  4. Pingback: The Value of Values | weeklyblogclub

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  6. Julie, thank you for this blog, it really helps to bring into focus the values work being done and what is still needed

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