Transformational Change through System Leadership (TCSL): urgent and emergency care


This programme is for senior cross system leadership teams who want to build their capability to deliver major change in the area of urgent and emergency care.

This fully funded programme provides a series of workshops giving access to expert, professional support and peer groups from healthcare systems across the country. Through the programme, teams are helped to put theory into practice as they work on their own system wide, urgent and emergency care (UEC) transformational change.

Based upon the proven concepts, tools and techniques necessary when working within complex healthcare environments, TCSL covers a broad range of topics. It's aimed at experienced change managers who want to move beyond basic service improvement principles to successfully tackle large scale, multi-stakeholder challenges.

This UEC themed programme will include the same material as the standard TCSL programme. However, all six participating teams accepted onto this themed programme will be expected to focus on making changes within their local UEC system. Teams will also be expected to help share their learning from this experience with the wider UEC community.

This development programme is intended to help urgent and emergency care systems work on their local challenges from a system perspective. By bringing together a small group of senior teams, each working within their own local contexts, we hope that there will be lots of opportunities for shared learning. For each team, we see this as a chance to reinforce and shape your role as system leaders – working together to collectively improve your system.

We're looking for a good mix of systems to participant in this exciting programme, from those with significant challenges to those who have already started taking strides forward. We also want participating teams to help us share the learning that comes out of their work within this programme.

Simon Weldon, director of NHS operations and delivery, NHS England

Previous participants share the challenges they faced and what improvements they plan to make since taking part in our TCSL programme.

About the programme

Starting in October 2017 and lasting four months, the urgent and emergency care TCSL programme is based upon a core of six interactive workshop days (spread over three 2-day workshops).

Throughout the programme, teams of senior leaders will build their knowledge and skills in transformational change as they apply them to an aspect of local UEC delivery selected by the team.

The programme combines exploration of a wide range of content areas with plenary, team and peer discussion. Participants will spend significant workshop time in directly applying the programme content to their change area.

Participants in the programme will also be expected to join action learning web sessions.  Further information on these sessions can be found in the urgent and emergency care TCSL programme information pack.

This is a fully funded programme with workshop elements taking place in Leeds. Participants will be required to fund their own travel and accommodation costs.

Earlier versions of this programme have supported over 70 healthcare teams and hundreds of individuals to develop and apply new skills. Previous cohorts have included support for integrated care pioneer sites and vanguard systems.

Some of the positive feedback that previous participants have given on the programme includes:

  • delivery was very authentic and the team illustrated the learning points well with real world examples
  • excellent underpinning theory
  • thinking about stakeholders brought up a lot of unknowns 
  • supporting materials were very good and provided useful pointers/methods
  • good opportunity to hone in on project action planning 
  • really good sessions on stakeholder and vision importance
  • encouraged thinking about system, leadership behaviours, project and stakeholder analysis in a different way
  • great opportunity to come together as a system and genuinely focus on what we were trying to achieve through transformational change

Who should apply?

The programme supports teams of up to eight people (minimum of four) who collectively represent the senior leadership group guiding the work on urgent and emergency care or a specific aspect of UEC. It is likely that team members will be working at director level and be from organisations across a healthcare system (representing those organisations involved in the change area).

Teams are expected to include:
  • most members at director level or equivalent
  • multi-agency representation based upon the change area being worked upon
  • clinical and non-clinical members

The following stakeholder groups should be considered when designing your team:

  • clinical commissioning groups
  • acute trusts, ambulance services, community services and mental health services
  • local authorities
  • primary care representation
  • social care sector
  • voluntary sector
Teams are also expected to meet and work on their change area outside of the workshops and so should not be formed solely for the purposes of the TCSL programme.
Teams need to ensure that they have a sufficiently broad representation of system stakeholders and appropriate authority levels to work effectively on their chosen UEC change area. A high proportion of workshop activities will be focused upon applying the concepts, tools and techniques to the team’s change area.

As an NHS-funded programme the focus of the change area being worked upon must be significantly healthcare related. However, team membership is not limited to healthcare organisations.

Please note we're also running an open TCSL programme in parallel to this urgent and emergency care themed programme. The open programme is open to senior teams working on any transformational change area.

If urgent and emergency care teams cannot be accommodated on the UEC themed programme it may be possible for them to join the open programme.


Event Date
Application deadline 14 July 2017
Application outcome 21 July 2017
Workshop 1 (2 days) 4 and 5 October 2017
Workshop 2 (2 days) 15 and 16 November 2017
Workshop 3 (2 days) 16 and 17 January 2018


All workshops will take place at The Met Hotel, King Street, Leeds - just a 3 minute walk from Leeds station.

Apply now

Details of information you will need to have to hand to complete the online application form can be found in the programme information pack.

The online application form should be completed by one nominated lead for your team. 

We are asking for one team member to be the nominated ‘lead applicant’ for contact purposes only. They are not required to be the lead for the team’s change project or take on any additional responsibilities during the programme.

Find out more and complete your application by Friday 14 July 2017.

TCSL programme information pack

If you have any questions about the programme please email the The ACT Academy.

Thanks for the opportunity to develop and enhance existing skills and for the additional welcomed learning the modules have provided. It is a really high quality course with some equally high quality delivery. Materials provided were great and the administration spot on. 

Previous participant

We all know that pretty fundamental changes have to be made in the delivery of health and care services and the reasons why. What the programme provided was the “how to”: the practical support, tools and insight to identify and tackle the real challenges inherent in designing new models of care.

Previous participant

What we are finding particularly useful is looking at cause and effect, understanding variability, understanding systems and starting to open up that conversation about the psychology and mind-set – which is an area I think people have been frightened of stepping into as they don’t know what they might uncover – but which I think could be the most critical part of transformational change.

Previous participant

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