March 8, 2023

BAPCO 2023: Police, Fire & Emergency Services Conference After dinner event and Keynote

I’d been sent to Coventry in the past, but it’s always nice to be sent there to do something you love doing: talking. You’ll obviously know all about my public speaking, but you can read my take on how to maximise your exposure at speaking events.

At this conference, I did an after dinner event based around mental health, resilience and a warzone. This was to an audience of 400 people and was my first late night gig. Everything we do is a learning experience and on this one I learnt not to do a late night gig again. Nothing negative, just y’know… Some people like tea, some like coffee, some are morning people, some are night owls. I like being out of my comfort zone, without leading to discomfort. And that’s not to detract from what was a great opportunity to talk about things that matter to me.

“Rachel gets stuff done – and listening to what underpins her motivation and JFDI attitude holds the key for others to have the confidence that with drive and ambition you can “just do it”. Yes, it needs hard work, it needs dedication, but that provides the satisfaction of achieving what you set out to do at the start. And the team that you bring with you on the journey will feel they too have shared in this success.”

— Duncan Swan, COO, British APCO

The following morning I was keynote speaker at an event about driving change in the public sector. Much of my driving change content is centred around the NHS and how we needed to – and need to continue to – work differently, openly and collaboratively. Driving the change is one huge step and maintaining that distance you’ve all travelled is absolutely key to success.  I took questions around Agile Procurement and how things could be done better, faster and easier and referenced the multi-agency rainbow teams we procured in the NHS to deliver and Empower the person. ‘Leave your badge at the door’ was a phrase invented for that gig!

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