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13 August 2015
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Learning from each other

Dr Ahmed Rashid shares his experience about being on the National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme class of 2014-2015.

As I come to the end of my 12 months on the National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme, I can't help but reflect on all the experiences, opportunities and memories that I've collected.

It has been the most memorable and influential year of my career to date and taught me a great deal about healthcare policy, corporate structures and most importantly, about myself and my potential as a leader.

One thing that has particularly struck me is the importance of learning from your peers. One of the huge assets of this scheme, skilfully facilitated by the venerable Peter Lees, Chief Executive  and MD of the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management, is the way it promotes a sense of cohesion and camaraderie amongst the fellows in each cohort. From the first time we sit in a room together, the energy is palpable and the year of working together is an excellent environment and stimulus to inspire one another.

I count myself very lucky to have been placed with a host organisation along with another fellow who has been an enormous source of wisdom, counsel and friendship over the year. We have enjoyed working on a number of different projects together, including a new approach to tagging and classifying quality statements in the NICE Quality Standard programme.

During my time at the National Institute for Care and Health Excellence (NICE) some of the most exciting projects I’ve taken part in have also involved working with other fellows across different organisations on the scheme. For example, a joint project with the two fellows at the BMJ have used NICE content in quality improvement workbooks and another joint project has involved embedding NICE guidance and standards into the Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection processes. Not only has this been a lot of fun, it has also allowed us to share ideas and learn so many new ways of working and leadership styles.

Of course, a lot of what we learn as junior doctors comes from watching seasoned leaders like Peter Lees and Professor Sir Bruce Keogh in action. We also learn a lot from the literature and theory on leadership. But for me, one of the things I've appreciated this year is the extent to which we can learn from one another. As we embark on the often lonely journey to becoming a clinical leader, the friendships and collaborations we make at this stage of our career may be more important than we realise.

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About the author

Ahmed Rashid's picture

Ahmed Rashid

Ahmed is a National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow (2014/15) working at NICE and an academic GP trainee (ST4) in Cambridge.


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