Inspirational stories from black leaders on our online Learning Hub
We explore powerful accounts from inspiring black leaders available on our online learning platform.
Our people are the heart of our organisation. None of what we would do would be possible without their hard work, skill and inspiration. Acknowledging our people’s backgrounds, who they are and the challenges some are facing is our collective responsibility as a community.
We’re proud of our workforce and recognise the importance of realising everyone’s talents and abilities and giving them the opportunity to draw on their personal experience at work.
Realising your potential on our Learning Hub presents a collection of inspiring videos and discussions from King’s Health Partners’ annual events series.
Listening, learning and trying to understand more about our colleagues’ experiences is vital in opening up our conversations around race, equality and diversity. We hear some personal stories and professional wisdom shared by black leaders who work in healthcare and beyond:
Prof 'Funmi Olonisakin, Interim Vice-President and Vice-Principal International, King’s College London
Prof 'Funmi Olonisakin [pictured, above, middle] speaks about her Nigerian roots, personal journey and the opportunities the King’s College London community opened her up to over the years. She also spoke about the ways we can each realise our own potential.
I had some excellent opportunities to study at King’s College London, to work with people... with similar world views and shared values… [I then] went to work with the United Nations in New York to work with several countries.
Potential is shaped by our personal stories, journeys and the environment.
The personal story requires one thing of us, that we are open-minded to understand the other, as we expect of others. It requires a world-view of living well and living long, along with others.
Rachel Mwansa, Head of Nursing, Liver and Renal services, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
With more than 40 years worth of experience working in the NHS, Rachel [pictured, above, far-right hand side] shares her personal journey from studying in Zambia to coming to the UK.
Black people have been given a negative history over the years, and it shapes us....We need to change the narrative. We need to look at this challenge as an opportunity. Let’s stop the negative energy, it’s not helpful. Let us interact with different cultures to learn what is going on.
Dr Neslyn Watson-Druée, Chief Executive, Beacon Organisational Development
Dr Neslyn Watson-Druée [pictured, above, far-left hand side] shares the challenges she has faced as a black woman coming from Jamaica to the UK at the age of 19. She explores where she currently is in her narrative, and all the achievements she has made in her career along the way. One of the learnings she shares with the audience is:
My vision – be a leader, and be empowering. I am passionate about leadership. Create a space, an example. It’s about the energy you create to make the others be their best. It’s about empowerment. It’s about execution. It’s about people having an easier path than you. It’s not about drawing up the bridge when you get there; it’s about widening it so more people can get through.
Dr Neslyn Watson-Druée’s four key takeaways are:
- turn every constraint into an opportunity;
- have a vision for your life and your career, but be flexible with the way you negotiate it and be flexible with changes;
- whatever you do, be excellent at it, and;
- have outstanding relationships.
To watch these inspiring talks for free, along with our archive of videos from the ‘Realising your potential’ series, and useful career guides from your partner organisations, login into the Learning Hub through your organisation, search “Realising Your Potential” and click “enrol in the course” to view.