Hayley Ormandy - KHPeople

What is your role? 

Hayley OrmandyI currently have a portfolio role as Programme Director for King’s Health Partners Diabetes, Endocrinology and Obesity Clinical Academic Partnership alongside a joint Programme Director role spanning South East London Integrated Care System and King’s Health Partners for Prevention and the Vital 5.

Both roles importantly focus on bringing together partners from across the academic health science and integrated care system, alongside local communities, to transform healthcare and deliver improved outcomes and health equity for south east London residents. There are also real synergies between the two roles. For example, King’s Health Partners Diabetes, Endocrinology and Obesity are leading on the system-wide approach to Healthy Weight which is one of our key priorities for our Vital 5 programme; seeking to stem the rise of childhood and adult obesity in south east London by 2030. And in both programmes we are working to ensure we translate community insights, evidence based interventions and research and innovation into practice, in a more streamlined, effective and impactful way. 

What inspired you to get into this work? 

I have always been passionate about integrated care and cross-boundary working.  My career to-date has very much focused on roles that span multiple partners, including transformation and system leadership roles across urgent care systems, local care partnerships, academic health science and integrated care systems. I often see myself as a bit of a bridge between different partners to facilitate new ways of working and make better use of our talent and resources to improve outcomes for our residents.

From a personal perspective, my father has multiple long-term conditions and has lived with both diabetes and obesity for most of his life. I’ve had firsthand experience of the stigma he and our family have faced as a result of his weight, the lack of joined up care and support, and the simple things that can be done to ensure both individuals and their families can be supported to ensure they are as healthy and well as they can be, in both mind and body.    

What do you enjoy most about your role?  

I am privileged to work across such a breadth of stakeholders, including our VCSE partners and local communities. This enables me to understand a wide range of perspectives and insights on both challenges and opportunities for how we can do things differently and translate this into impactful change. It’s certainly not groundhog day and having a portfolio role means I get variety in what my day-to-day role looks like, the opportunity to continuously develop and translate skills, experience and knowledge, and to lead on different programmes and initiatives. I can go from a senior level Executive meeting to a women’s health outreach event at a local mosque or a workshop with our frontline clinical and operational staff in any given day, which in turn enables me to be a much better system leader and understand the realities that people face on the ground and what this means for our delivery priorities and decision making.   

What are the benefits of working in partnership? 

More heads are nearly always better than one when we are tackling wicked problems or systemic issues that can’t be solved by one partner or part of the system alone. We are currently in an incredibly resource constrained system, which can either divide with people going back into their trenches or galvanise partners to come together to make better use of our collective assets and resources for a shared purpose or common goal. My experience to date has demonstrated that it’s the latter that can make a real difference – whether this be accelerating our research capacity, capability and impact to develop a Metabolic Centre of Excellence, bringing together academic, clinical and lived experience expertise from across the system to facilitate service design and improvement, or collaborating across King's College London and our Trust partners to develop novel education and training modules and programmes. There’s always something you have to give up in order to work in partnership (e.g. time, power); however, what you get in return and for intended beneficiaries is exponentially greater and therefore worth it.  

What can women leaders bring to teams and organisations, and what are the challenges of being a woman in leadership? 

The key to high performing teams and organisations is diversity and women in leadership are one key part of this equation. The worse thing we can have is ‘group think’, a lack of psychological safety and inclusive leadership to constructively and openly challenge the status quo. It’s important that we enable leadership at all levels, not just at a senior level.  The reality is anyone can lead no matter where you are in your career, and you should be empowered and supported to do so. I believe it’s an outdated concept to think of leadership and power as hierarchical and we need to break through this if we are to effect change.

The majority of us have that ‘impostor syndrome’ sitting on our shoulder which can often be our own worst enemy and a key challenge for women in leadership (I read recently that naming your impostor syndrome helps minimise the voice of doubt, but mine is still alive and kicking). This is exacerbated by not always feeling heard and listened to as an equal particularly if you have a softer and slightly more collaborative style of leadership, the perceptions of how we might dress, talk or act, and the realities of taking time out and coming back into the workforce for those of us who have caring responsibilities. These challenges aren’t always overt and can be subtle biases that make it inherently more difficult to navigate and comfortably call out or address. 

What would be your one career top tip for women seeking a leadership role/pathway?  

To build your networks and surround yourself with people and mentors that will both support and challenge you in a safe and inclusive environment. And importantly within this know your worth and that you are an asset – have the confidence in your capabilities. We all bring something different to the table and your voice and contribution deserves to be heard. 

You can learn more about the work of KHP Diabetes, Endocrinology and Obesity at its webpages here.