Where has all the time gone?! The last time I blinked I was at the Welcome event in Leeds in September 2018 and now, as the title suggests, I am nearing the end of my first placement. When I joined my first placement I felt as excited as a kid on Christmas day waiting to open their presents and as I look back on what I have done over the course of the placement I have been spoilt.
Thoughts about placement
I consider myself to be extremely lucky to have been placed here as I’ve had the opportunity to engage with a rich variety of stakeholders including Microsoft, Sollis, Health Education England, NEL CSU etc. The experience I have acquired has been invaluable and as I look towards my flexi placement within the next couple of months, I will be looking to utilise the experience I have gained. I have observed a variety of leadership styles during my placement which I have learnt from and hope to incorporate some of these into practice in the future.
How has the placement furthered my development?
One of the themes throughout the NHS graduate scheme is reflection and my placement manager has placed a great importance on constantly reviewing various encounters from how certain meetings went, how I felt when I presented data to stakeholders, the significance of feedback from colleagues etc. The competencies that I have been completing through my first placement have allowed me to reflect on projects I have been involved with which has been helpful.
I have also learnt how to use Power BI which is a data visualisation tool that allows users to pull information from a wide range of systems and create dashboards that allow for information and insight to be shared. This was a challenge at first as I had previously only used the ‘QlikView’ and ‘Business Objects’ data visualisation tool but with the guidance of my manager and colleagues I’ve been able to understand the tool to the level where I have been able to train other members of staff on its features.
Anything you could have done differently?
I wouldn’t say I have any regrets about my time at my first placement although if I could offer any advice to new management trainees it would be…
- Be more open to asking people to repeat themselves if they use an acronym/term you are unaware of.
- Try to not get stressed out; your placement won’t expect you to know everything from the first day.
- Have the courage to seek out more opportunities/interests within your host organisation. Chances are your placement manager will be happy for you to observe other teams in practice.
- Try to establish a routine as early as possible but also allow yourself to be flexible; almost everyday will provide a different sort of challenge.
Ultimately each placement is different but hopefully these tips will be of some help.
If any new trainees are reading this then good luck in your first placement!