Healthcare Assistant shares her CEO experience

  • 13 March 2024

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Two ladies standing next to each other and smiling at the camera

In keeping with our Charity values: compassion, caring, community and excellence, colleagues are encouraged to learn more about the Charity by shadowing other professionals. It is a useful way to learn more about fellow colleagues’ roles and can be undertaken by anyone working at Arthur Rank Hospice Charity.

Inpatient Unit Health Care Assistant, Lou Dawson, recently spent a day shadowing our CEO Sharon Allen. Lou kindly shared her thoughts and experience:

“The day began at 9am with a welcome cup of coffee, setting the day of insights! Firstly, we planned the day ahead before diving into a sea of emails. We did a quick whittle-down from important to less urgent, efficiently clearing the inbox.

The first hiccup of the day struck when the 11am meeting got cancelled. That was not the best start. Undeterred, we planned for the 1pm meeting. Lunch time arrived at 12.25pm – a timely relief I might add; my tummy had been rumbling on/off all morning which was noted by Sharon with a shared chuckle.

The 1pm meeting was a Joint Clinical and Professional Executive Group session. It proved informative, especially with Sharon and Honorary Consultant Physician, Dr Steven Barclay’s captivating presentation on Palliative and End of Life Care. The interactive forum saw various perspectives contributing to a successful meeting.

Then we had a short break before getting back into work, checking yet more emails and Sharon’s weekly schedule. We also planned the next meeting, which was about Business Continuity and Emergency Preparation. This I found very interesting and informative, as familiar faces added a personal touch. The meeting chaired by Sharon flowed smoothly, addressing issues with practicality and efficiency.

As the day concluded on a high note, I reflected on the ‘normal’ and humorous people I met throughout the day.”

When asked what was Lou’s takeaway from the day shadowing the CEO, she replies:

“A CEO like Sharon is a blend of humour, normality and effective leadership, and that puts everyone at ease – especially me!”

Sharon commented:

“I was really pleased when I heard that Lou had identified shadowing me as part of her learning in her appraisal discussion with her manager. I am a big fan of shadowing, it is a great learning opportunity. It was lovely spending the day together, and although it was disappointing that one visit had to be cancelled due to a colleague being unwell, it was also opportune as I had an urgent request for assistance from another colleague which I could then respond to. Similar to Lou’s role on our Inpatient Unit, it’s important to be ready for anything! Lou has done a great write up and thank you Lou, for your feedback.”

If you would like to work for Arthur Rank Hospice Charity, please see our vacancies page: