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I Spy An Award

September 24, 2014

This post is dedicated to Chris Hatton. I sincerely hope that this transcript of my speach from the inaugural Viral Quality Conference will put to bed Chris’s doubt’s that its all a load of mumbo jumbo. Chris – I hope your apology is in the post…..

“Welcome fellow viral quality friends. The year is 2014. The location is Planet Earth. The mission is to spread the word that viral quality is this century’s major game changer. I am passionate about viral quality. Slice me open and you’ll see viral quality running through my veins. If I could bottle my passion…..sorry, I’m getting a bit choked up by my own passion.

Let’s all remember that in our service, quality services of top quality are our service. If we can turn first class quality into first class viral quality, we will enable our staff and service users to reach new heights in quality experiences. We can bring together exceptional partnership co-production with innovative quality innovations and change our customer’s viral experiences forever.

People often ask me – what is viral quality? I tell them they are living it. They are breathing it. They are tasting it. Instantly, they get it. Let me be absolutely clear – viral quality couldn’t be simpler. Its the modern way that works when all other modern ways have failed.

Late at night, I like to reflect on the process of processing the viral quality process. It keeps me on my toes. But I know, and I want every single delegate in this room to know, that if we join all the dots then we can make viral quality the beacon for this organization. From the 665 strong management team to the 14 zero hour domiciliary staff across 15 sites, we will sing a glorious viral quality anthem. As we deep dive into strategic transparency, viral quality will innovate and ripen our biggest challenges into award winning successes.

I sincerely hope that this lecture has left none of you in doubt that by bringing together viral and quality, we have created a living experience of tertiary leadership and a movement to greatness.

I can offer no further explanation of viral quality. I’m sure every person here tonight understands the absolute rightness of this vision and will accelerate their staff and customers with a viral quality that will indeed change their lives in a way they could never have imagined. I have yet to meet a doubter – I’ve only encountered believers. Let your leadership soar into the stratosphere of viral quality.

I thank you all”.


From → Social Care

    • No Cathy – nothing to do with them at all!

      • Well, great minds think alike…or something. Yours does make much more sense than theirs, as yours is obviously nonsensical, and theirs is – presumably – meant to be taken seriously at some incomprehensible level. (Or else…even to hint that the Emperor’s New Clothes are a bit lacking and threadbare could have serious consequences, I imagine.)

        Bet everybody is really looking forward to sharing their stories. Except for those they daren’t mention.

  1. marie permalink

    Thanks for the link Cathy. There’s a video on the site to show team leaders how to book their staff to attend the event.

    • You must watch the one with Tim. The stuff going on in the background with the woman trying to keep out of camera shot is hilarious. I really thought it was a spoof

      • Pauline Thomas permalink

        This is hilarious. Are they taking themselves seriously? Surely not. It is a spoof is’nt it? What poor sod thought that viral quality was a good idea, and what does it mean?.

      • Nope. Southern Health paid tens of thousands to a consultancy company to introduce viral quality into their trust

  2. anonymous permalink

    sounds like a serious virus? Quick call the pest control……

    • Pauline Thomas permalink

      Just watched the one with Tim. I am wetting myself with laughter. The Monty Python lot would have been proud to have written that sketch Surely they are not taking themselves seriously? Someone put it on Youtube and give everyone a good laugh.

  3. Pauline Thomas permalink

    A fool and his money are easily parted.

  4. What an utter load of meaningless, jargonised codswallop! No wonder there is no funding available
    for the people who need support/services, it is all being spent on their self serving meal ticket club.
    That money could have financed full time support for 10 autistic people to live in their own home!

  5. In case you’ve missed it, here’s my favourite. It’s had me laughing all day. You have to watch all the way through as it gets more chaotic as it progresses (I’m sure it was written by John Cleese and Connie Booth) –

    • Nichola permalink

      Outrageous! Even Kira doesn’t ‘really know’ what to expect from this exercise.

  6. Weary Mother permalink

    I suppose (not really) that the CE will have agreed in her objectives that this newest and potentially daftest flavour will show massive measurable improvements ….in exactly what and for whom? Don’t want to pour salt on but……there is a wee bit of a queue in this regard………………………..?

    And…….the budget has got a million pound hole in it for starters……I assume the Non Execs signed this off ? Who is going to get the blame…if the contagion doesn’t…..well,……………..contage.?

    Suggestions on a lab slide?….

  7. Weary Mother permalink

    …….one other thing:

    This appears to be so daft that it is just too easy to ridicule ….

    But how many more millions are going to be chucked away in ‘games’ like this. The NHS and LA’s have been for decades, trained to the gills without tangible lasting improvements in the ‘quality’, of lives of disabled and vulnerable people. I thought in the eighties we had run through every kind of bank breaking leadership lite, bought in can, straight of the shelf …….and it it wont hurt a bit …….miracle cure for weak, or arrogant or incompetent leadership.

    This is an outrage. And not a bit funny. People are damaged and dying. It is not a game.

  8. Pauline Thomas permalink

    Weary Mother you are so right. It is an outrage that the only power we have is to make fun of them What we need to have is empowerment to say that we are fed up with this endless “PR nonsense and to demand that these Southern Health Executives are held accountable to their patients and not to engage in these silly tactics to fool people that they are competent when it is clearly obvious that they are not.

    • Making fun isn’t the only power. If these people had any sense of humour or irony they would not be able to get into this nonsense with a straight face. Making a noisy nuisance of ourselves, making our truths public, making connections and continuing to point out that the Emperor’s clothes are tasteless rags is the best we can do right now, but constant drips can wear down stone. All this guff about improvement and striving to do better sits very ill with Sue Marsh’s account of her recent stay in a hospital where she had to discharge herself to get enough to eat/drink to keep her alive. No money for staff – a fortune on nonsense PR.

      Odd how “viral” has become a positive term. Bacterial wouldn’t work as well, would it? Maybe if we mention that Ebola is also going viral , and only the very dim think that “viral” is equivalent to “useful”. Orwell’s Big Brother believed in “training” people into Group Think – as a means to power, not greater efficiency.

      • Sorry – my point was we have anger, truth, and human rights and needs on our side. They have smoke and mirrors. May be a long and painful struggle, but worth it.

  9. weary mother permalink

    I feel very strongly about this more thing…

    …..this calamitous ‘quality’ initiative has victims. It is a paradox that some organisations, who choose cheapest care contracts for the vulnerable, believe that only the most eye wateringly expensive ……….means another context………

    I looked at the videos – CE clip, and the bobbing lady ‘why am I here’ one.

    The CE intro says it all. I respectfully ask this Board to look hard at this initiative and both video clips, and then agree about what they are buying and selling. If they cannot….?

    I ask them to do this in the in the name of the powerless, and I include their own hard working, hard pressed staff here…

    The two bemused people who were being interviewed are victims. Did they agree to look foolish across on the net – of course they did not. I am sure they are struggling to do their best against the odds and they do not need this. I am absolutely on your side here guys.

    Whoever failed to check these videos against what this Trust say they are trying to achieve, has hurt yet more people….and whoever paid/was paid a million give or take to do it….needs a very big uncomfortable reality check.

    • Pauline Thomas permalink

      Weary Mother the hospital staff in these videos are victims too. I agree with you. However, the cry that ‘that I was only following orders’, is not a good enough excuse when atrocities are being committed. I bit strong here but you get my drift.

      Liz made the connection to the Emperors New Clothes. Mark to me symbolises the little boy who points out to the crowd that the Emperor is naked. Thanks Mark.

    • Weary Mother – I take your point but also believe that humour is a great way of exposing the king’s new clothes. Lots of people have read this post, laughed and then felt furious. Lots of people have watched the video, laughed and then felt furious. Of course, behind the post & the videos, there is a total scandal going on. The trust are prepared to pay a million for viral quality but couldn’t train their staff in basic epilepsy procedures, which led to Connor’s death. The trust post a video about candour but are still behaving appallingly to Connor & Nico’s family. I accept that I was telling a joke but there was a fury behind the joke.

      • Weary Mother permalink


        keep on doing what you do, and keep on saying it all with the brilliance and humour with which you say it. I have not expressed myself in the way I wanted. Truly sorry.

        I fell about laughing too and at the same time it is all so knuckle chewingly awful in it’s context. I felt compassion for the clueless people in the silly stupid god awful vanity video. The thing is that I have seen it all before over and over, and I rage at the waste of all of it. ……………………………………………..

        That said there is a difference here, that is in the scale of: self delusion, denial, ignorance, arrogance, and incompetence……………..and the unbearable pain that it has caused.

        ……………………………….and they think we are just being nasty.


  10. Weary Mother permalink

    Hi Pauline

    Oh goodness Pauline you are so right. I heard that ‘excuse’ from two shameless care managers in the last couple of years..I totally get your drift.

    But as we heard again this week, whistle blowers are still routinely being bullied in the NHS.

    Not speaking up, can mean keeping your job and doing very your best to shift things for the better where you can. People who follow the party line get promoted, by my experience. And status is the name of the game. Deference to authority is endemic in the public sector. If the billions paid to consultancies over decades have not moved LA’s/ NHS into respecting families or out of harming people, where does that leave the rightly outraged little coal face person, sitting at the bottom of the pay grade.

    I think the people caught in the ‘I don’t know why I am here’ headlights in the clip, probably just turned up for trainin’… not unusual not having a clue what it is all about,….a day out of the office and lunch. Or they may have been ‘pressed men’ others faster on their feet dodging iit. . Not wanting to be rude,they may have just got caught by a camera. The chap with the camera, however…….must be cringing.. .

    • Pauline Thomas permalink

      Weary Mother it is an admirable asset that you have for feeling compassion for these people who are being led by the nose to perform for the video cameras to save the image of the very much damaged Southern Health and its egoistic CEO’s. It is pity that they cannot or will not return the compliment. If they possessed as much compassion and empathy for the agonies we as carers have to endure daily because of their disregard, we would not now be in this place.

  11. Weary Mother permalink


    Too right. Totally misplaced.

    Rancid (viral) cultures are very resilient and they infect all their staff. Some go before they turn. The best of the rest merge …and.forget who they once were.


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