The Language of Leaders
January 25th 2012
I have just read one of the most inspirational
leadership books for a long time.
The Language of Leaders by Kevin Murray examines how top chief
executives communicate to inspire, influence and achieve results.
Kevin interviewed 60 chairs and chief executives of top
organisations and they revealed what they had learned about
communicating in the age of transparency. The book is very
easy to read, but so enlightening and thought provoking and gives
some real practical tips on how to become a better
Even more amazing is that I contacted Kevin direct by email and
was delighted that he responded. This ended up in arranging a
phone conversation to discuss themes from his book and how I could
become a better chief executive. How amazing that someone who
wrote such a fantastic book had the time to email and speak to me
personally. Perhaps that's why Kevin is such a fantastic
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A true tribute
January 17th 2012
Everyday at The Christie, there seems to be
something to be thankful for. This time, the thank you I really
must give is to our tribute fundraisers. Their hard work and
generous donations makes so many things happen.
In March 2009, we set up our online Hope Tribute Funds so
that families and friends raising money in memory of a loved one
could have a place to share memories, photos and tributes. At the
same time, we created a very special sculptured bronze tree called
the Tree of Hope, to give recognition to tribute funds over more
than £15,000. The tree now displays more than 100 engraved bronze
leaves in memory of past patients and supporters.
Tribute Funds can start off with donations in lieu of flowers
and can grow over time by making donations, taking part in
fundraising events, setting up a direct debit donation or even
buying a 'virtual leaf' to remember birthdays and anniversaries.
This is such a special way of fundraising, close to so many of our
This month we have reached a milestone with the amount of funds
raised from the Tree of Hope reaching £5m. That incredible figure
speaks for itself and makes me feel incredibly proud.
The world, not to mention the UK, has certainly seen some tough
financial times of late. This fundraising example shows the true
strength of people's dedication.
A sincere thank you to everyone - supporters and staff alike -
for your unstinting support and ongoing fundraising efforts. It's
thanks to you that we are able to provide such good care for
patients, and also undertake so much research to help people in the
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Our 20:20 Vision
January 11th 2012
The new year is well and truly with us, and I am
immensely excited about moving our 20:20 Vision campaign forward
with gusto. We have less than three months left to gather views
from all of those with an interest in cancer and The Christie, and
I am absolutely committed to ensuring as many people as possible
have the chance to influence our vision for the future.
After a period of reflection over the Christmas period, this
week we are having several internal meetings to finalise plans for
the next phase in the campaign.
As part of these plans, a small team are out and about in the
hospital at various times asking patients and carers their
opinions. The team will be wearing promotional t-shirts - if you
see them do stop for five minutes if you can. I must take the
opportunity to say a huge thank you to one of our volunteers who is
giving up their time to help us.
Then, from January 16, we will start to visit towns across
Greater Manchester and Cheshire to ask the public what they think.
Again, the team will be wearing Christie t-shirts, so will be
instantly recognisable. If you see a member of the team in your
neighbourhood, do please take the time to give your views.
In the meantime, Manchester Business School is starting to
analyse the first batch of responses. I can't wait to hear about
the key themes.
As I have said before, this engagement exercise is extremely
important. Your views will help us to shape how we do things in the
future - and this will affect tens of thousands of patients, plus
their families. If you have an interest in cancer services, please
do get involved. I look forward to hearing from you.
To take part please log onto our website www.christie.nhs.uk, or
contact us on email email@example.com
by 31 March 2012.
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It was very moving to hear the story of one of our patients
January 3rd 2012
It was very moving to hear the story of one of our
patients, Rebecca Fitzgibbon, in the press last week. Rebecca was
just 15 when she was diagnosed with a rare form of brain tumour.
Instead of letting her illness get her down, Rebecca channelled her
energy into music which she says helped her stay positive. Rebecca
has now recorded a song to raise money for our Young Oncology Unit.
Like so many of the people who are treated here, she really is an
Our staff work exceptionally hard to support the emotional
wellbeing of our patients, and we have many facilities on site
which aim to improve their experience. One such example is the art
room, which is part of a new suite opened recently to help patients
better cope with the emotional effects of their cancer. A number of
patients who have found solace in art are holding an exhibition at
Turners Gallery in Stockport later this month. It is the first time
those involved in art here have collectively exhibited their
paintings in a public place, and I am really excited about seeing
the show. Like music, painting can be very therapeutic, and can be
a way of escape for many people. It is also very accessible,
and some of our patients have found they have a real talent.
Patients tell us that the services we provide here at The
Christie to support emotional wellbeing are hugely important. It's
thanks to our staff that we are able to provide such a good
service, many of whom came in over the festive period to ensure
services continue as normal. It's also thanks to the generosity of
people who fundraise for our charity which enables many of these
additional wellbeing services to run. As we enter the New Year I
want to say a huge thank you to our staff, supporters and patients
for your continued inspiration.
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