NEXT GEN NABS: RACHAEL MARCHANT
What role(s) do you hold at the moment?
I am a portfolio GP with an interest in end of life care and quality improvement.
I currently work 4 sessions a week in a large training practice in Essex. I work 6 sessions as a GP with an extended role for Havens hospices. I am also the RCGP clinical support fellow for end of life care, a member of South Essex LMC and the RCGP Essex faculty board. I have previously been clinical director of a primary care network, a Macmillan GP, and a quality improvement lead for the CCG as we as co-lead for the first cohort of next Gen GP in Essex.
What’s the best leadership/career advice that you’ve ever recieved?
That leadership is more about what you say, how you behave and the relationships you build than it is about holding any role or title. This leads me to choose roles where I am happy and where I can make a difference rather than seeking the next step “up” in my career. There are times when a step down or sideways is a step forwards in career progression and fulfillment.
Who do you look up to?
I do not think I can name a person for this question. I suppose I look up to certain qualities I see in people rather than necessarily to a person. I look up to honesty, compassion, collaboration, and confidence. I look up to social ease and that ability some people have, to speak to strangers as if they are old friends. I look up to bravery and a willingness to stand up for what you believe in whether it turns out to be right or wrong. By this I mean that people I look up to are not necessarily those in leadership positions but rather, those who show these qualities; be they national leaders, mums at the school gates, trainees, or patients.
What would you like to achieve by the end of your career?
The honest answer to this is I do not have a plan, I used to worry about that and spend time and energy trying to make one and then the next opportunity would come along and be unrelated to the plan but exciting and the plan would change. I have changed the focus and what I want to achieve is to have taken the opportunities as they present and used them to make the most positive difference that I can considering my skills and interests. I would also love to have achieved making a difference to future generations of doctors. I strongly believe that if we can make being a doctor more satisfying, more flexible and more fun this will improve patient care
What is something that people often get wrong about you?
I think the thing people are wrong about most often is that I am too busy. Yes of course I am busy; I think most doctors are. I like being productive and making the most of my time. Multiple roles, young children, and a lack of effort to apply make-up all add to the impression of being busy. I am not though too busy to offer advice or support to a colleague, friend or family member who needs it. Nor am I too busy to take on a new role or project that really excites me.
What’s the last show that you binged and loved?
Grey’s anatomy while trying to avoid revision for finals at medical school and claiming it might count in some way. In more recent years my TV watching has been more paw patrol, operation ouch and horrible histories than anything I can claim to actually “love”. Child free time is precious these days and it would be almost unheard of for me to use it watching TV.
Who are your dream dinner party guests?
For pure pleasure, my friends, many of who I would love to see more of. If I were after someone notable, I think Dawn French would be great fun and if looking beyond the realms of reality then Dumbledore, Frodo and Matilda would be up there too. For more serious focus, end of life care is my passion and Julian Abel and Allan Kellehear are inspirational in compassionate approaches to this.
What’s a snapshot of a moment in your life that brings you real joy?
What brings me most real joy are my two boys and my absolute favorite moments are the ones where they find joy in each other, in being outside and in being free. I love seeing them get excited about cycling through ditches, jumping over waves, or managing to climb a tree.