Top Class Leadership

I was once more knocked off my feet by the appalling reek of laxative-induced faeces, rolling down the corridor like mustard gas, searching out every corner of the longsuffering unit. A rotund little man came into sight and announced with a chuckle:
“He! He! I’ve had a good clear out. See you later.”
I viewed his retreating form, and noticed some brown liquid trickling down the back of his long socks. My worst fears were confirmed when I had a quick look in the nearby toilet and discovered that his explosive diarrhoea had left the place looking like a slaughterhouse. Luckily it was a ‘male problem’, because if the patient had been female and they had requested female attention, a short-term exchange of staff would have been necessary before the clear up operation could begin, with a reluctant female staff member being dragged in chains from another unit. We were okay this time however (sic), and soon employing our full contingent of specialist wet suction cleaners, red mops, rubber gloves, aprons, specimen containers, and yellow plastic bags to neutralise the damage.
Our manager applauded from the wings, and after a while we settled down to a rewarding cup of coffee, with the residual odours of latex and crap drifting up from our scrubbed hands and stinking clothes. Of course, most nurses knew that the smell of the unit could never really be removed, so they kept two entirely separate sets of clothing at home, like mechanics routinely isolating their oily overalls from other items. In our case, we weren’t allowed to wear uniforms, because we had a ‘rehabilitation’ philosophy of care and had to pretend that everything was normal.
What a joke.
“Well done everybody” said Richard.
“Thanks for all your support” we chorused.
Oh…mm….mm….yes…..don’t ever underestimate the role of top class leadership.”
“No of course not” I agreed. “In fact, on behalf of the staff I’d like to thank you from the heart of our bottoms.”


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