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Steering a True Course

An Award-Winning Leadership Course, Delivered by Senior Leaders in NHS Audiology

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Tuesday 28 January 2025 - Thursday 30 January 2025
Course fee:

The Park Royal Hotel
Stretton Road


Non-residential course

Delegates are responsible for booking their own accommodation for this course. The Park Royal Hotel offers a discounted bed and breakfast rate for course attendees; please contact us for details.


This course is a unique opportunity for those moving into leadership and management roles, or who are already in those roles, to have support on that journey from experienced senior leaders in NHS audiology. There is no other similar course in our profession, or in physiological sciences, where senior clinicians come together to share their knowledge of leading audiology teams. The feedback from attendees on the course has consistently been outstanding.

Anne Davies was awarded the Denzil Brooks Trophy in 2010 from the British Society of Audiology for setting up this course. The course provides practical skills on all aspects of running audiology services. The programme explores leadership qualities, communication skills, leading a team, business planning, change management, service development, clinical governance, stress management, and current issues in Audiology. The course faculty also discuss leadership in a post-covid world, and the approaches necessary to lead in this new more remote / virtual world.

The course gives time out to reflect on your skills and self-management, and there is opportunity to discuss with the speaker faculty in a relaxed setting. This is an exceptional opportunity to gain resources, tools and insights from key clinical leaders in audiology, who are motivated to pass on what has worked for them.

“A unique leadership course designed for and delivered by leaders in Audiology, and comes highly recommended.”
Dr Jagjit Sethi, Regional Chief Healthcare Scientist – NHS E East of England

“I thoroughly recommend this course for those who want to improve as leaders in our field.”
John Day, Clinical Director of Audiology, BCU LHB, North Wales

“Providing opportunity to learn from current and past leaders in the field of Audiology, this is a valuable programme for those looking to develop or change their leadership approach.”
Will Brassington, Consultant Clinical Scientist, University Hospitals, Birmingham

Course faculty
Dr Jagjit Sethi

Regional Chief Healthcare Scientist - NHS E East of England
Regional Clinical Advisor for Physiological Sciences - NHS E South East

Ruth Thomsen

Scientific Director
NHS England (London Region)

Dr Christine DePlacido

Principal Clinical Scientist & Counsellor

Adam Beckman

Head of Audiology Services
University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust

Jonathan Parsons

Managing Director, Consultant Clinical Scientist
Chime Social Enterprise, Devon

John Day

Clinical Director of Audiology
BCU LHB, North Wales

Will Brassington

Consultant Clinical Scientist, Head of Audiology Services
University Hospitals, Birmingham

Tony Corcoran

Head of Service (retired)

Dr John Fitzgerald

Consultant Clinical Scientist
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals

Dr Rachel McCarthy

Consultant Clinical Scientist, Head of Audiology
Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, Reading

Amy Lennox

Director / Specialised Audiologist
Hypatia Training Ltd
Hypatia Dizziness & Balance Clinic

Course programme
Tuesday 28th January 2025
from 8.30 Arrival and Coffee
9.00 Course Introduction
Anne Davies
9.15 Into the Labyrinth of NHS Health and Social Care
Dr Jagjit Sethi
10.15 Epidemiology
Tony Corcoran
10.45 Time Management
Anne Davies
11.15 Coffee Break
11.30 Compassionate Leadership in Complex Times –
Building Consensus, Through Reflection and Collaboration
Ruth Thomsen
12.30 Lunch
1.30 Changing Mindsets: Workshop
Ruth Thomsen
2.30 Preventing Burnout
Dr Christine DePlacido
3.30 Coffee Break
3.45 Quality
Adam Beckman
5.00 Mindfulness
Dr Jagjit Sethi
5.30 Close of day
6.30 Evening meal, in the hotel restaurant
Wednesday 29th January 2025
9.00 Coffee
9.15 Leadership – Some of What it Takes
Jonathan Parsons
10.15 Strategic Management in Audiology –
Recognising and Influencing the Bigger Picture
John Day
11.15 Coffee Break
11.30 Influencing Change: A Scientific Approach to Leadership
Will Brassington
12.30 Lunch
1.30 Provider Driven Service Development
Tony Corcoran
2.30 Making Service Development Happen
Dr John Fitzgerald
3.30 Coffee Break
3.45 From NHS Service to Social Enterprise –
Some Reflections on the Journey and Destination
Jonathan Parsons
4.45 Questions and Discussion
Speaker Faculty
5.30 Close of day
No evening meal provided, please make your own arrangements
Thursday 30th February 2025
9.00 Coffee
9.15 Deconstruct Your Service, Build a Case
Dr Rachel McCarthy
10.15 Maintaining Healthy Work Relationships – What Would Freud Do?
Dr Christine DePlacido
11.15 Coffee Break
11.30 Clinical Governance
Dr Rachel McCarthy
12.30 Lunch
1.30 Leadership – The Uncut Guide!
Will Brassington
2.30 Coffee, Discussion & Closing Plenary Session
Anne Davies & Course Faculty 
3.15 Close of Course
Course content

Into the Labyrinth of NHS Health and Social Care (Dr Jagjit Sethi)
The health care is an ever changing complex and often confusing system to navigate. In this session we familiarise ourselves with the past, present and some future changes to the NHS landscape and discuss their implications and what we can do as Audiology service providers.

Epidemiology (Tony Corcoran)
We can use epidemiology to estimate the number of people in our population who would benefit from hearing aids (prevalence). From this we can estimate the number of new people each year (annual incidence) and how many of those would seek help (demand). This presentation will look at these numbers and crucially, the assumptions made at each stage. It would be valuable if delegates could find out the demographics of the population their organisation serves.

Time Management (Anne Davies)
We will précis key literature on time management, and cover suggestions for scheduling tasks, avoiding procrastination, and habit-formation.

Compassionate Leadership in Complex Times –
Building Consensus, Through Reflection and Collaboration (Ruth Thomsen)
This workshop will use the lens of leadership to build a blueprint for how we work in complex systems. Using reflection, conversations and group work we will build a leadership strategy that can support our teams. In the second half of our session, we will start to use this strategy to develop a framework and action plan that prioritises and identifies the timescales and resources.
We will reflect on current NHS leadership thinking, use different models and ways of working, build consensus around a common theme, demonstrate the power of coproduction, transform thinking into strategy and actions plans, and reflect on the methods/models and outcome.

Preventing Burnout (Dr Christine DePlacido)
Stress is unavoidable but we can change our reactions to stress in order to lessen its effects. In this session we will look at how we react to stress, what are our triggers and how we can change how it affects us. We will learn some practical techniques based on relaxation and mindfulness that can reduce stress and promote good health. These techniques are simple to use and can be practiced at work.

Quality (Adam Beckman)
In this session, we will explore how we make changes to improve quality. This should illuminate what we mean by quality, and what personal qualities and organisational knowledge and skills help us to make quality improvements. We will look at how we can apply these to make the changes required for quality standards across the UK.

Mindfulness (Dr Jagjit Sethi)
It can be easy to rush through our very demanding lives without stopping to notice much. Paying more attention to the present moment; to your own thoughts and feelings, and to the world around you can improve your mental wellbeing.
Some people call this awareness or “mindfulness”. Mindfulness can help us reduce stress and anxiety, enjoy life more and understand ourselves better. You can take steps to develop it in your own life.
In this session we will explore the importance of our well-being and practice the art of mindfulness. Please bring with you a smell that makes you feel happy or brings back good memories.

Leadership – Some of What it Takes (Jonathan Parsons)
Leadership can come in many and varied forms. In this session I will try to highlight some aspects and promote discussion by utilising material that I have accumulated not least by attending courses myself.

Strategic Management in Audiology –
Recognising and Influencing the Bigger Picture (John Day)

Where is your service heading? Will it thrive in the future? The ability to understand and manage the wider environment in which we lead is a key to success. This presentation and tasks will explore issues and tools relevant to being an effective strategic leader within Audiology.

Influencing Change: A Scientific Approach to Leadership (Will Brassington)
The ability to understand change is essential for today and tomorrow’s NHS leaders; the influence of people, the barriers, the components, the drivers, the successes and failures, the risks, and the acceptance of change are all discussed in this presentation. Some examples of successful and not so successful changes are also provided. An interactive lecture, attendees are expected to participate in discussions.

Provider Driven Service Developments (Tony Corcoran)
Will include group exercises.
What is development?
Why should we do it?
Who initiates service development?
What influences these groups?
How do Providers drive developments?

Making Service Development Happen (Dr John Fitzgerald)
This presentation will focus on considerations necessary for successful service development, factors that can influence the outcome, stages to go through in achieving successful developments and a few tips to make it easier.

From NHS Service to Social Enterprise –
Some Reflections on the Journey and Destination (Jonathan Parsons)

I will describe this journey – the original thoughts through to daily running issues. This will include process, difficulties, staff issues and importantly finance.
Critical to this process has been very regular interaction with local commissioners – I will major on this in the talk and try to describe how we are now placed contextually in AQP world.
This is an opportunity to hear from a service that has changed radically to try and be competitive in the current (NHS) market place in England.

Deconstruct Your Service, Build a Case (Dr Rachel McCarthy)
What key information will help you understand and develop your service? How do you work out staff and resource needs to assess if capacity meets demand, or to help build a case for more? How do you argue a case for quality initiatives? Here, we take a practical look at key information that can help identify and underpin your service development project, persuade those who need to be persuaded, and get it over the line.

Maintaining Healthy Work Relationships – What Would Freud Do? (Dr Christine DePlacido)
My talk will cover the psychological aspects of relationships, including ego defences, transference, self concept and working with resistance. The aim is to identify where these issues impact on managing staff and how to address problematic behaviours.

Clinical Governance (Dr Rachel McCarthy)
Ensuring staff are working in a safe and competent manner is a key skill for clinical services, essential for patient safety. This talk will provide practical tools for monitoring clinical service delivery and supporting staff where necessary.

Leadership – The Uncut Guide! (Will Brassington)
During this programme you have learnt different approaches to leadership and service development from the expert faculty. This final presentation titled the UNCUT guide aims to help consolidate formal and scientific approaches to leadership using approaches and techniques learned through the experience of the author. A lively session that will make you consider your approach to work in a different way.

Comments from previous delegates

“Audiologists should consider the ‘Steering a True Course’ leadership programme to be a mandatory requirement for their CPD. The course topics are highly relevant and challenge each participant to think outside the box in regard to strategic and operational challenges which we face on a daily basis.”
Mark Mitchell MSc, Head of Audiology Services, NHS Grampian

“Whether you are an NHS audiologist or a lead audiologist in a private company, the programme broadens your leadership skills in the clinical settings. The course content covers very varied topics: mindset changes, best attributes of the best leaders, maintaining professional relationships, staff management, building a cost model, SWOT analysis and strategic choices. These are presented and chaired by highly knowledgeable audiology leaders.”
Sylvia Kewish, Director, Specsavers Ely Hearcare Ltd

“The ‘Steering a True Course’ Audiology Leadership Programme is essential for any Audiologist who is leading a team, no matter how big or small. The content of the course and the speakers themselves were fantastic and very relevant to the challenges of modern-day Audiology. Mixing with delegates from other Audiology services brought some insight into other ways of working which was also helpful. The course was extremely well organised. Returning to work following the course I felt refreshed, motivated and focused. In the two months since the course I have moved forwards with three big projects that I was struggling to get off the ground.”
Danielle Howard, Audiology Team Leader, Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford

Accommodation and travel

Accommodation costs are not included in the course fee.

The course venue is The Park Royal Hotel, Stretton Road, Stretton, Warrington WA4 4NS. This is on the outskirts of Warrington, a 15-20 min taxi ride from Warrington town centre. The Park Royal Hotel offers a discounted bed and breakfast rate for course attendees; please contact us for details.

The course fee includes evening meal on the Tuesday evening of the course at 6.30pm. On Wednesday evening, please make your own arrangements for evening meal.

Driving into and out of the Warrington area can be subject to considerable delay during rush-hour. We therefore recommend staying over, rather than driving daily to the course. Where the latter is unavoidable, please leave plenty of time for your journey.

Leaving the course early on the final afternoon is not advised. Train travel from the Warrington stations should be booked for no earlier than 4.00pm.

Methods of payment

Purchase order number and invoice address (supplier: Anne Davies Audiology Courses).
Cheque (payable to Anne Davies Audiology Courses).
Credit / debit card. Pay online at time of booking.
Monthly instalments by direct debit (UK customers). Two payments of 50% over two months, or three payments of 33.3% over three months, interest free.

If you are travelling from overseas and require a visa: once you register and pay, we can provide a letter confirming your place on the course. Please contact us to discuss.

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