Team Secretary at West London Mental Health NHS Trust

Karen Spick is a Team Secretary at Broadmoor Hospital and has been described as a ''natural leader'', who is driving many positive changes within West London Mental Health NHS Trust.

Karen is known for her ruthless efficiency, meticulous attention to detail and her quick-witted personality; which keeps many of her colleagues in high spirits. Karen takes great pride in her work and completes everything placed before her flawlessly and in a timely manner. Her sense of responsibility and care is an example to all. As well as managing her own workload, Karen ensures that the team she supports can complete deadlines, which means that patients receive the highest standard of care.

Karen consistently goes above and beyond her job description. She epitomises someone who is an Unsung Hero, as she often puts the needs of others first. For example, while in this type of role it is expected only to provide support in meetings. Karen contributes further, by providing reworked agendas that avoid duplication, producing minutes that are sharp and action-focused. In addition, while it may not necessarily be her responsibility to arrange care programme approach meetings, or visits for family members, Karen happily picks this up when others may be busy or unavailable.

Her willingness to step in, take charge and ease the burden of others is what makes Karen a true heroine and leader. Karen’s administrative excellence and high efficiency has meant that other departments across the Trust wish for her to support them. This proves that her skill and abilities are essential. Karen has also been praised for having excellent IT skills - she has worked with software developers to refine the electronic medical records system, and her fresh ideas have put her at the forefront of developing IT at Broadmoor Hospital.

Alongside the above, Karen is exceptionally sensitive to the needs of both patients and staff. She can tell her managers of any problems occurring within teams, to ensure everyone feels connected. Karen’s sense of humour also makes her enjoyable to work with and she often reduces her colleagues to tears, bringing smiles to many people’s faces.

Karen is an Unsung Hero because her work reminds others that the efforts of administrative staff in the NHS should not go unseen and are vital in helping those working on the front line. Karen is one of many pillars holding up a team that would otherwise suffer without her skill.

“Winning an Unsung Hero Award was an amazing achievement – it was just an honour to be nominated by my Trust. It felt like a real validation of all my hard work and effort. The Awards Ceremony itself was wonderful, it was lovely to meet so many people from all over the NHS – all of whom work incredibly hard every day so it was a brilliant opportunity for us all to be recognised” – Karen Spick.