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Re-instating and re-integrating a suspended medical consultant


A consultant had been suspended for over two years. The Chief Executive wanted the consultant to return to his previous team but recognised that the team had become dysfunctional and split between those who felt the consultant had been victimised and those who felt he deserved his punishment. Oxford Executive was asked to help the consultant recover from this traumatic experience and to decide on future employment.

Programme and method

A three stage programme was developed, starting with individual coaching of the suspended consultant. A cultural audit was then carried out with six colleagues, the Chief Executive, the Directorate Manager and the Clinical Director, followed by an away day excluding the suspended consultant, feedback on the cultural audit and open discussions leading to agreement on the way forward and how to welcome the consultant back. Finally four coaching sessions were held with six consultants in the Directorate, an away day conducted after the re-instated consultant returned to work, and a further away day four months later (at which the team agreed on the goal of becoming 'Hospital Team of the Year').


Disagreements were resolved and the entire team developed new energy and a sense of pride in having achieved what few teams ever do - re-instating a colleague back into his previous position and growing the team in the process. The coaching has helped one consultant to move up to Medical Director. The Chief Executive was delighted because, while the process was costly in terms of consultants time, it saved the Trust tens of thousands of pounds in severance pay, avoided legal action and re-engaged a team who had been 'ticking over' and 'not putting their heads above water' for two years.

The re-instated doctor told Oxford Executive 'I am looking forward to the future to see how I can make a significant contribution to my profession…..I have re-discovered my passion for my profession'.

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