DECEMBER 2020 - Spotlight on learning as a network during a pandemic

The final blog of the year reflecting on transformational change in 2020 and how we can build on good practice to grow our networks.

Carol Read RN/MSc

Traditionally December is a time for reflection and learning, with plans put in place for January and beyond.  This year has taught us many things, not least that networks can provide a robust system to manage services during uncertainty and challenge.  In a previous blog I covered findings from a survey London South Bank University completed with leaders across the health and social care system and challenged us to go Back to Better.  It is easy to look at the results and wonder how we can keep the good practice, continue learning and strengthen our networks during the second wave of Covid-19.  A real challenge when networks are put under increasing pressure and collaboration between individuals is practical and feels like firefighting.

A hope for 2021 is that the Source4Networks platform provides a simple, helpful one stop approach to develop your networks with key resources and a place to host your networks.  Each month we put a spotlight on topical and impactful learning from across the system and international intelligence which can be built into your network learning plans to ensure we do not go back to the old way of working, but embrace future thinking. 

Additionally the Source4Networks team are developing additional masterclasses and touch points for you to connect and learn during the Week of the Network - 18th - 22nd January. 

MondayNetworks and Social Media - A day of Twitter- connecting with national and international colleagues sharing emerging trends in the world of networks; successes and beartraps; tips, tools and hot topics.

Tuesday and WednesdayAsk the Source4Networks Community – Questions, answers and curiosities - join the conversation on the S4N platform. What are your network challenges, what’s worked well in 2020, and what could be even better. Asks and offers.

ThursdayThe Network Surgery – Live interactive coaching "clinic" discussing your network challenges and successes. An action learning “clinic” with Liz Maddocks-Brown and Sophie Edwards, 3-4pm.

FridayA one-hour “Huddle Summit” – an opportunity to draw on the “best of the week” reflect and generate key learning from the week.

There is a Masterclass planned for the 26th January - Networks and 2021: Back to Better - Networks through a pandemic and shared learning. The session will cover what works well in building networks, and digital developments. The learning from the week will feed into a webinar with Prof Becky Malby afterwards, where we’ll be sharing network achievement stories throughout the pandemic, and what this means going forward.  To find out more and recieve the latest details, ensure you sign up for further information here.

Wthin the resources shared in December I have taken the latest thinking from June Holley on network weaving and how this can be achieved - an approach which is being explored by the Q Community at present.  (Resources 1.2.) and the network weaver site provide insight and align well with the learning space topics.  As a network why not review as part of a learning session and connect with the Q community membership to see how they are applying the resources to their network.  

As another session with your networks, you could review how you collaborate in a culture where remote working is happening acrosss the system.  I have provided a range of thought starter content which could be used around building purpose, collaboration and importantly how will your network tell its story of change during 2020/21, Resources (3 - 8.)  Lastly, I have provided the next steps towards integrated care and back to better resources (9 - 10) which will be useful for Week of the Network.

Looking ahead to the January content I have shared a great learning report from the Q Community and NHS Horizons to aid your planning for the year ahead and how your network can thrive in these unprecedented times.                  

December resources

  1. Building intentional networks that drive impact - Part 1
  2. Building intentional networks that drive impact - Part 2
  3. A recipe for baking in collaboration
  4. 3 tenets of a strong remote culture
  5. How to tell the story of change
  6. Learning resources from IDEO 2020
  7. The science behind the growing importance of collaboration
  8. Purpose, not platitudes
  9. The next steps towards integrated care
  10. Back to better