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The year ahead for Stand

It’s a new year full of new possibilities and I decided to ask our directors, Caroline Latta and Paul Parsons, what they have planned for Stand in the year ahead. Here’s what they had to say.


Caroline: The way we’ve planned has changed since we started. At the beginning there was lots of next-week and next-month planning. Now it tends to be much more next-quarter and next-year planning. So you’re asking us at a good time.


Paul: It’s all about doing more of what we do best: patient and public involvement, strategic communications, and service change programme support for health and care. Helping NHS programmes all over the country solve difficult service change challenges. That’s what we love doing and what we’ve been doing from the start.


Caroline: Yes, whether it’s building entire new hospitals or developing plans for new buildings, reconfiguring urgent and emergency care or maternity services to make sure they comply with the latest standards, or helping with other tricky service change challenges as we’re doing with mental health and community hospital services. We’ll be supporting our clients transform the health and care services they provide to patients.


Paul: We’ve been really lucky to be asked to work on some of the most challenging service change projects. It’s a busy time in the NHS, and we’re proud to be in a position to contribute where help is needed and be making a difference for patients. We have an amazing team and great clients.


Caroline: It’s amazing when you think about where we’ve come from. I think it was Maya Angelou who said “If you don’t know where you’ve come from, you don’t know where you’re going”. So it’s important to us to keep where we’ve come from in mind. Knowing what we’ve achieved helps show us what’s possible.


Paul: This time two years ago, Stand was nothing but a twinkle in our eyes. It was pretty much exactly two years ago, early January 2020, that we were in California and saw the street art that inspired the company name.


Caroline: “Stand for something, or you’ll fall for anything.” It was the essence of all of the conversations we’d had about the values and principles we wanted to base our company on.


Paul: We set up Stand in March 2020. Our first commission was to write a practitioners’ guide to the legal duties for service change for NHS England. Soon we were working on new hospital programmes, supporting public health departments and NHS organisations on their COVID responses, and helping NHS organisations all over the country with their service change programmes.


Caroline: And here we are, thousands of patient contacts, public meetings, focus groups and discussion sessions later, and of course more Zoom, Teams and Google Meet meetings than either of us expected to have in our entire lifetimes.


Paul: What started with just the two of us, is now keeping a team of eleven busy.


Caroline: Sticking to our values and ways of working has been good for us. So, definitely lots more of that this year. We’re lucky to get really positive feedback and several clients have given us the ultimate endorsement of our work by booking us a long way into the future or asking us to take on other projects for them.


Paul: We’re starting the year recruiting new staff and associates to provide the services our customers are asking us for. It’s going to be an exciting year. How have we done? Have we answered your question?


They certainly have.

Happy New Year from all of us at Stand.

Here’s to an exciting 2022!