ABSTRACT

This section starts with a poem by Sue Duke. Sue is a clinical leader working as a consultant practitioner and senior lecturer in cancer and palliative care at the University of Southampton. She wrote her leadership synthesis poem as part of her exploration of consultant practice for her PhD. This poem illustrates how clinical leaders bring together and shape the substance of their leadership in order to develop a distinctive leadership style grounded in and relevant to their practice. This style is influenced by who they are, the skills that they possess, the people who have influenced them, the people with whom they work, the organisation within which they work and the work that has to be done. All of these are clearly visible, to me, in Sue’s poem. The poem shows how leadership goes far beyond the theory presented in textbooks and can become an integral part of an expert practitioner’s practice requiring her or him to be in tune with not only others and their surroundings, but also themselves.