Systems Leadership Symposium - The challenge of doing ‘the right things’

Monday, 7th October, 2019 9:00am to 4:30pm

About the Day


The NHS Long Term plan (LTP) expects that organisations in the Health and Social care System will work closer together to achieve meaningful long term health outcomes for a diverse and ageing population; with limited resources; moving care where possible out of Acute hospital provision and into communities; shifting our purpose from fixing illness to creating healthier populations.

This 1 day Symposium, in partnership with Public Health England East Midlands, creates a space for leaders in complex systems to consider how they develop and apply System thinking approaches to meet the challenges of doing what we can assume are the ‘right’ things, especially in meeting the challenges of promoting health and wellbeing into planning and delivery.

In a complex System is there even such a thing as the ‘right’ thing or ‘right way’? How do we navigate and lead in this space? How do we authentically and honestly move forward on these critical System decisions? Especially when it can often seem that perverse incentives are stacked against making what we believe to be the ‘right’ decisions for patients, improving the quality of services and deliver better value for money at the right time.

The aim will be around helping leaders in complex health and social care systems to work confidently with these and other system dilemmas, exploring:

  • How do we deal with polarities of focusing on both the future and here and now; short term outputs and long term outcomes; me and we?

  • How do we on the one hand work towards a long-term aim of delivering the prevention agenda when resources and processes are geared towards managing ill health;

  • How do we deliver the aims of the LTP for more connected, collaborative planning and delivery, at the same time as maintaining funding for acute ‘treat and cure’ service provision?

  • What could the impact be if every System leader during the course of design, delivery and review of their services explicitly embedded the prevention and public health agendas?

The event format integrates behavioural psychology and systems thinking to help participants create small nudges individually and collectively towards helping the whole system take action. By focusing discussions on what is possible in what can seem like impossible situations, we aim that every participant will walk away with one piece of clarity and one piece of action to support a system movement.



Belinda Weir

Belinda Weir is a highly experienced leadership coach, facilitator, academic and consultant who has designed and directed successful leadership interventions for thousands of senior leaders in all sectors. Belinda has a particular interest and expertise in systems leadership and in developing collaborative partnership working across boundaries, and has written and taught extensively on these themes.


Belinda is Director of Systems Leadership at the newly-launched Centre for Health & Social Care Leadership and a senior fellow at the University of Birmingham Health Services Management Centre. She was a NED and deputy Chair of Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust for six years, and in her earlier career was the Chief Executive of a mental health community services provider.

Debbie Sorkin

Macintosh HD:Users:adrianpiggott:Desktop:VH32Ny7Q.jpegDebbie Sorkin is National Director of Systems Leadership at the Leadership Centre, a UK-wide charity specialising in strengthening leadership across public services, including with the NHS, local government, housing, public health and social care. Debbie’s work is based around building collaborative leadership capacity in places, using Systems Leadership approaches to support people working in uncertain and complex situations.  She has been responsible for a National Systems Leadership programme which has worked to join up health and care systems, and support population-based health approaches, in some 60 places around the country, and has had demonstrable impact. 


Most recently, her work has focused on supporting system-wide approaches in Urgent and Emergency Care, and in strengthening systems leadership capacity within Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships and Integrated Care Systems, including in the East Midlands. Debbie speaks and writes extensively on Systems Leadership.

Who is it for: This is for any health and social care leader working on a STP/ICS workstream project.

To Book

To book your place, please follow the 'sign up for event' link at the top of this page and fill in your details. You'll receive an automated email from our website to let you know that your registration has gone through, followed by a manual email from one of the EMLA team to confirm your booking. To maximize impact we are asking people to nominate at least 1 other colleague who is working on the same System workstream. Learning together with allies working with us will enable us to turn classroom concepts into deliverable realities. 

What do I do if I want to know more?

To find out more about this exciting opportunity or to discuss your application in more detail then please contact the Programme Lead, Amy Tempest on 0115 7484277 or 

Sign up for event

Trent Vineyard Conference Centre

Easter Park, Lenton Lane, Nottingham, NG7 2PX
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