This week, we’ve been celebrating all things co-production by taking part in a range of new co-production projects and sharing our activities on our Facebook page.

As part of our week of activities we launched a new initiative called, ‘Walking in Someone Else’s Shoes’. Justin decided to ‘swap jobs’ with Regional Quality Manager, Emma Holland, to find out more about the processes, planning and skill involved in monitoring the quality of the service we provide.

Justin explains his experience: “I have really been looking forward to my Coproduction week experience.  However, setting off at 5.30am (after a night of penalty shoot-outs) I did wonder if I was walking in my own shoes, let alone someone else’s.

Emma spent half a day patiently introducing me to all the details of how the Quality team help everyone in Lifeways to drive up quality.  Emma took me through a couple of current quality cases which she was dealing with.  In both cases, there were layers of considerations to be handled which didn’t occur to me at first glance.  It was impressive and educational.

Driving up quality is a challenge in any organisation, but it is a unique challenge at Lifeways.  We have 11,000 people supporting 6,000 individuals.  The relationships are as varied as the individuals, and frequently conducted in individuals’ own homes where we may not be able to drop in unannounced for ‘a quality inspection’.  Maintaining and improving Lifeways delivery in that context is an extraordinary task. Quality at Lifeways isn’t about ticking the box – it’s genuinely about ensuring the best outcomes for the people we support.

What a fantastic day!  I had the chance to meet some of the team in Exeter office, as well as spend some of the afternoon with Ben Masters understanding more about tenders.  Thank you to Emma and all the team for the insights and time that they gave me.”