Leadership Zone (Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust)

Project Team

Library Services Manager, Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust,  and both Site Librarians in collaboration with the Trust’s Leadership Academy manager.

Resources Required

Funding and space for additional bookstock, technical expertise in developing a website for leadership, staff time in developing collections and promoting them.

Timeframe

April 2012 onwards

“The Story”

In April 2012 we reconfigured some of the shelving in the Shrewsbury Health Library to create an area devoted to leadership and management books that included comfortable seating and chairs to encourage discussion and group working.

Over 170 new print books have been purchased for the collection, many based on reading lists provided by the Trust’s Leadership Academy manager, to support courses being undertaken by staff in the Trust.

More recently, over 200 e-books have been made available on a ‘patron-driven acquisition’ basis so we only buy the titles that are used, and we have begun a corporate subscription to the Health Service Journal.

In addition, we have also developed a Leadership Knowledge Centre to bring together our leadership resources.

Alignment to local, regional and national drivers

The Trust produced a leadership academy strategy (1), and employed a Leadership Development Manager in 2011, making this a high-priority.

The Leadership Development Manager in turn has promoted leadership education, and organised conferences that has increased leadership education uptake, and the need for library services to support the leadership agenda.

Several reports have stressed the link between leadership skills and better patient care, such as the Francis report about the clinical leadership failings at Mid-Staffordshire Hospital.

Partly as a consequence of this, the NHS Leadership Academy is actively promoting leadership learning for NHS staff.

1. Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (2011). The Leadership Academy.

Impact of this project/service

During the period April – Septemeber 2012, issues from management books increased by 50% over the previous six months (from 747 to 1,118) and remained high with 1,064 issues in the six months to Apr 2013.

We’ve taken part in two of the Trust’s Leadership Conferences where we had a stall with management books and articles, resulting in much higher visibility for the leadership and management collections.

The Leadership Academy Manager has provided us with reading lists, and has also asked us to provide her with lists of books on leadership and coaching, along with QR codes so she can promote the lists to course attendees in the Trust.

Lessons Learned

One of our concerns was the breaking up of the standard classification sequence, and whether this would cause confusion. So far it doesn’t appear to have been a problem, but we made sure we had signposting in place, and the leadership collection books are identified with a coloured label protector.

The soft seating area has proved popular, but not with our target audience! Nursing students tend to be the biggest users of the seating area.

We would probably attract a lot more users likely to use the management collections if we could offer NHS WiFi and they could access their emails or hot-desk in the library, but this is something we have not been able to do so far.

Sustainability / next steps?

We have continued to build the physical and virtual collections of stock from our usual book budget, so it has proved sustainable.

We are gradually moving into e-books, but are offering these via patron-driven acquisition, so we only pay for what is used, but these will all be available via the catalogue so increasing the range of books available without taking up more shelf space (something we are beginning to run out of).

Contact details

Jason Curtis, Site Librarian, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital
jason.curtis@sath.nhs.uk, 01743 492507

Date case study completed:  March 2014

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