The impact of listening

The Trust

University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust

The background: listen and learn

A significant part of recovery is to provide listening support following traumatic events, such as COVID-19, to connect, provide comfort and support as well as enable a route for growth and development. We created a model which provided a safe environment and time to listen, reflect and learn from employee’s experiences.

The approach

One-hour sessions were facilitated by organisational design consultants. We captured themes – what went well, areas for improvement and thoughts, feelings, and emotions. It is important to note that attendance to these sessions was voluntary and we were careful not to mix groups who may have had different levels of exposure.

Feedback sessions were held with executives, divisional management teams and matrons, with outputs also fed into the ‘discovery’ phase of a culture and leadership programme.

The impact

We produced a report sharing themes identified to improve employee experience going forward. Over 200 employees attended sessions (following wave 1).

RESPOND, as a listening tool, was one of the outputs:

  • This provides a 24/7 confidential listening service, the ‘tea and empathy support line’ for employees.
  • Forty employee volunteers give their time to participate on a rota.
  • All employee volunteers receive RESPOND training and critical incident support management (the basics) to enable them to provide this support for employees.
  • Employees access the ‘tea and empathy’ support line by ringing University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust switchboard and simply asking for the service.