My job

60 seconds with RCN West Midlands regional director Paul Vaughan

I have a passion for supporting people to be the best they can be, says RCN West Midlands regional director Paul Vaughan.
Paul Vaughan

I have a passion for supporting people to be the best they can be, says RCN West Midlands regional director Paul Vaughan

After training as a nurse in Ireland, Paul Vaughan moved to the UK in 1989 when he took up a post in orthopaedics at Gloucestershire Royal Infirmary. He then became an ENT nurse, rising to ENT senior nurse manager in 1995. The following year he became a sponsorship executive at the RCN, with subsequent roles at the college, including employment relations officer, learning and development facilitator and healthcare assistant adviser in the nursing department. He took up his current post as RCN West Midlands regional director in 2009.

What are your main work responsibilities? I

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I have a passion for supporting people to be the best they can be, says RCN West Midlands regional director Paul Vaughan  


Before taking up his current role as RCN West Midlands regional director, Paul Vaughan held a
variety of other roles at the college. Picture: Charlie Milligan 

After training as a nurse in Ireland, Paul Vaughan moved to the UK in 1989 when he took up a post in orthopaedics at Gloucestershire Royal Infirmary. He then became an ENT nurse, rising to ENT senior nurse manager in 1995. The following year he became a sponsorship executive at the RCN, with subsequent roles at the college, including employment relations officer, learning and development facilitator and healthcare assistant adviser in the nursing department. He took up his current post as RCN West Midlands regional director in 2009. 

What are your main work responsibilities?  
I manage RCN services for the 40,000 members in the West Midlands, ensuring they have access to professional development and support with employment relations issues. I also lobby key stakeholders on issues affecting nursing. 

How did you get your job?  
I aspired to be a regional director, so left a job at the RCN to gain the experience I needed to apply when a position became available. I was interviewed for the post by members and senior RCN staff.

What do you love about your job? 
I love helping members with their professional development. I have a passion for supporting people to be the best they can be. 

What do you find most difficult? 
The politics associated with the profession that hamper people from delivering the best care. 

What is your top priority at work?
Ensuring that we meet the needs of our members so they can deliver the best possible care to the people they look after. 

What has been your most formative career experience? 
I was lucky enough to be one of the first participants on the RCN Clinical Leadership Programme. The programme and its leader, Geraldine Cunningham, had a significant impact on my personal and professional development that has enabled me to be the person I am today. 

If you hadn’t become a nurse, what would you have done instead? 
Become a teacher.

What is the best lesson nursing has taught you? 
Treat everyone with respect and dignity at all times, especially when they are at their most vulnerable. People, not things, are important.

What career advice would you give your younger self? 
To have done my Master's degree earlier in my career. Education is essential and broadens your mind and your thinking. 

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