Leadership in an emergency


We were travelling back from overseas recently when unfortunately one of our party had to be hospitalised.
Firstly its tough being in a different country from your own and secondly not knowing what was happening.
As you know some doctors and certainly some specialists can be remote and rather forbidding .They have both language and a demeanor that can intimidate rather than accommodate the patient.
In a sense these people have a leadership role.They are there to advise,communicate and offer reassurance to their patient just as any team leader in an organisation would need to do in an emergency. But often the patient only sees the specialist briefly and does not feel comfortable to ask questions and discuss options clearly,they can be left unsure and even scared.

Our experience was excellent.The specialist was calming in the face of emergency treatment.He quietly offered reassurance -not necessarily that “all would be fine” but gave the feeling that what ever happened everything was under control. He ensured we understood the procedures.
Following the operation (at 2am) he rang personally and discussed what he had done and that the patient was going to be OK. His ability to clearly give information in a manner that reduced any concerns made a huge difference.
When a leader in any emergency situation can instill confidence in their ability and confidence with their calmness it makes a huge difference to their team.When they communicate clearly and swiftly, the trauma is lessened considerably and as a result the team becomes confident and comfortable much more rapidly making it business as usual  which is what we all want! 

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