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A day in the life … Mike Fry

Hi, my name’s Mike Fry and I’m one of the advisers working at PCC. I’ve been here for almost three years now leading on our work with primary care networks (PCNs) and emerging integrated care systems (ICS’s) but also working as part of the dental team.

Prior to joining PCC I was a regional manager for two large corporate providers, firstly in dentistry and then more recently in primary medical care. I have also worked in various parts of the NHS including at a teaching hospital and with national contract reform programmes.

Given the wide variety of support we provide at PCC, it’s very difficult to nail down a typical day and I have to say, that ever changing focus is something that I really enjoy – most of the time.

A good example of that would be the work that I have recently been doing with Cheshire Local Medical Committee (LMC) where I supported the design, preparation, and delivery of a leadership programme for general practice nurses. Firstly, I should point out that this programme was the first that I have run, for over a year, where I actually got to see people face to face rather than through a little box sat in front of me at home. Although the thought of it was a little scary, it was fantastic to feel the atmosphere in a room again and have to get back to worrying about things like where the loos are, what happens if there’s a fire alarm and how long does it take to get to, have and come back from lunch.

Having said that, when you get to the day of delivery itself, most of the hard work has already been done. It’s hard to underestimate the impact of good preparation for any session, because spending that time getting to know exactly want the client wants and needs from a session pays dividends at the end of the day. So, a lot of prep goes into everything we do including an ability to flex an agenda at the last minute as I had to do in a session for the PCN business managers in the south west. The client had wanted to include a session in the workshop on the PCN Dashboard that had been due to be released around the time of the workshop. Unfortunately, this was not to be the case, so we reverted to plan B and delivered an alternative, related session. As it turns out, the dashboard was released whilst we were in the workshop.

The delivery for the general practice nurse leaders was, as I said, face to face which as a trainer is wonderful (other than not being able to rely on speaker notes like we have been used to over the last 18 months). It provided an opportunity to involve directly involve delegates and to sense how they were reacting so that I was able to flex the session as it went.

During the day, I only had one presenting slot to fill as the programme had been built with several speakers. However, as the event lead, once my slot had finished, that was not the end of the day. It was at that point I started focusing on the rest of the day, from checking that the other speakers had all that they needed, keeping an eye on time, setting up and monitoring the feedback platform and generally keeping an eye on the delegates, getting ready to act if necessary.

The day ended with an opportunity to speak to delegates and find out if the day had been useful for them and then hold a debrief with the client, again to check how things had gone from their perspective. The feedback we get at the end of a session is invaluable as its then when you start to identify where tweaks can be made to improve delivery, something I’m always looking to do.

I look forward to seeing you all soon.

Contact events@pcc-cic.org.uk and let us know how we can help with your events and workshops.