What is a Just and Learning Culture?

As well as an excellent work life balance, good pension and generous annual leave, Mersey Care prides itself on being one of the first NHS organisations to introduce a Just and Learning Culture.

It means an environment where we put equal emphasis on accountability and learning when something has not gone as planned. So we ask, what happened? Not, who is to blame?

That said, a Just and Learning Culture is not the same as an uncritically tolerant culture where anything goes – that would be as inexcusable as a blame culture.

We’ve introduced a Civility and Respect workstream and the group’s been asked to develop a framework aligned to our Trust values that fosters and supports civility in practice.

Executive Director of Workforce, Amanda Oates, discusses just culture

We have a number of work streams to embed our culture across our expanding services. Our development of a respect and civility agenda has been shortlisted for several national awards. You can watch a short film about the issues we want to address here and see how we’ve created a practical tool to aid some of the most delicate staffing conversations here.

We’ve developed free online training aimed at HR staff but accessible to all below:

We tell the story of what happened in one NHS trust, Mersey Care. We look at how being a rules based organisation meant there was a lack of awareness of the psychological harm of some HR processes.

Click here for module one

In the second module we acknowledge that mistakes can and will happen.

Click here for module two

Click here for module three

In the third module we hear that a Just and Learning Culture must have the full commitment of the Board of Directors, and senior leaders and influencers answer your questions.

In Module four, our staff role play a real life upsetting situation – can you help them?

Respect and Civility has never been more important; being polite, courteous and respectful, and treating everyone with dignity and respect and according to their individual needs should be the standard but with the internal and external pressures sometimes this can be lost.

The training package highlights the importance of behaviours to equip staff with the necessary confidence and tools to speak up if they witness something they think is not right #IWillSpeakUp.  The training gives examples of best practices, which will hopefully reinforce areas staff are already doing well in.

Click here for module four