Improving Team Working In The NHS

Being one of the biggest employers in the world means that there is huge potential for teams to deliver great results.  While there are many examples of teams working together, there are also opportunities to improve team working between different disciplines.

So what can the NHS do to get even better at team working?


Create The Right Conditions

A lot of organisations talk a lot about the importance of team working and then fail to create the conditions where collaboration is valued more than competing.  Often there is a huge disconnect between how performance is assessed.  If you want to have better team working the right conditions and culture needs to be established.


Use Teams Where There Is Real Interdependency

Take the example of getting a patient to theatre for surgery on time.  In this situation there is a real interdependency on nurses, doctors, theatre staff and porters to work together.


Train People To Listen To Each Other

Much is made of the importance of communication.  In my experience many excel when it comes to speaking and writing but far fewer are skilled listeners.


Value Different Contributions or Perspectives

There are many highly talented and highly skilled professionals in the NHS.  Sometimes this can lead to labelling or pigeon holing people based on their job title.  When this happens it is all too easy to dismiss others views because they are not seen as the expert in that area.  Often it is the apparently dumb questions or inputs that get people to stop and think differently about an issue.


Break Down The Barriers

Rightly or wrongly people often have pre-conceived ideas about what a certain group of staff does or does not do, sometimes without a real understanding.  Create the opportunity for people to realise the different but important contributions people make.


Highlight Team Successes

When I worked in the NHS every significant success whether it was a major incident, reconfiguration or patient experience only happened as a result of teams of people pulling together and focusing on the result.  Make a point of highlighting successes achieved through teams.


The Bottom Line: Improving team working can yield real benefits for NHS organisations and the users of services.


Goals and Achievements help healthcare and healthcare related organisations to improve team working.  To arrange a no obligation consultation to discuss your needs, please contact us.