Sunday, April 14, 2024

BMJ Leader “In Conversation” | Helen Bevan – Making Change Happen

by Editor

"In Conversation" is series of interviews with key opinion leaders across the world of medicine in collaboration with the journal BMJ Leader

Helen once had one of the most   intriguing job titles  – “Chief Transformation Officer”. After 30 years as an internal change agent in the National Health Service in England she still works for the NHS for part of her time but otherwise she works with a lot of different organizations and systems supporting large-scale change.  Most of her work is still in the UK but she also works with healthcare systems in many other interesting places. 

“…I work with leaders and systems that want to change the way that they’re doing things, and want care to be better.  What I focus on is the ‘how” of change because often leaders are very clear about what they want to do, the areas that they want to focus on, the kind of care that they want to make better.  But, I think the real issue is- how do you make big change happen in a system.”

Enjoy the conversation: You can listen to the podcast or watch the video on the links below or read the transcript by clicking though to  BMJ Leader

Read more from Helen on social media

Some key quotations:

“…to create a sense of, “Our Shared Purpose”. The “Our” is – who are the people.  The “Shared” is what unites us.  …  then “Purpose”. What are we trying to do here, what are we trying to change, and how does it connect with the things that really matter to people. “

“…the people who are the best  change agents aren’t necessarily those with formal power that can cascade or push change down from the system.  The best change agents are the people that build relationships and connections.  Much of effective change is about relationships and collaboration and trust.  There are no shortcuts. You’ve got to take the time, and you’ve got to take the time to build.”

“…All the ideas, all the talent, all the perspectives are there in our system already.  We have to work with that, we have to enable, and we have to create the space…if we look at the organizations in the NHS that actually do best, they’re the places where the leaders understand that we’ve got to make the time and space for connecting, and communicating, and learning, and sharing together. I don’t think there’s only one magic answer, but I do think the answers are there in our people, as they’ve always been.”

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