About Fiona’s own career
I understand what senior doctors, medical and public health leaders need to reach their potential, find career direction, make changes, develop their leadership abilities, stay well, and to ensure lasting meaning, purpose and satisfaction in their careers and working lives. I have over 2,000 hours of experience practising as a Consultant Coaching Psychologist and Executive, Leadership and Coach for doctors and public health leaders since 2016.
My 20 year medical and public health career
I first started peer mentoring in 1990 as a volunteer at the University’s ‘Nightline’ and was trained by the Samaritans in listening skills at the end of my Fresher’s Week. I qualified as a doctor in 1996 from Edinburgh University, also with a first class intercalated honours degree in psychology. My early exposure to the new and emerging science of human flourishing, behaviour change and emotional wellbeing radically shaped my professional life, and has been the ‘golden thread’ throughout my career.
After several years as a junior doctor in hospital, General Practice, and community health settings, I chose to focus my career on the prevention of illness and improving health, becoming a Consultant in Public Health Medicine in 2009. For the next ten years, I worked in both citywide and regional system level roles as a Public Health Consultant, including: joint senior roles across health and local government; over 3 years as Public Health Advisor to a National Health Service Governing Body (Board); and as an Associate Medical Director for a large Clinical Commissioning Group.
I led large programmes and budgets to improve the health of whole populations, also improving staff health, leading multidisciplinary teams through change, coaching, mentoring and developing people, and innovating and improving a wide range of health, care and public services.
My career coaching senior doctors, medical and public health leaders
I recognised that I was finding great satisfaction from developing my team members and colleagues as leaders, helping them to stay in work when they were struggling, and supporting them to develop their longer term career plans.
I felt I could add real benefit to very senior professionals at an individual level, enabling them to effect lasting change in health and societal outcomes, through doing their own best leadership and clinical work. I decided to integrate my varied professional skills and interests in order to focus the second half of my career on improving the complex careers, wellbeing, and leadership of senior doctors, medical and public health leaders. I spent the next few years developing my theoretical knowledge and practical skills further in order to provide maximum value to my clients.
I wanted to offer a wholly objective, independent and confidential coaching practice and realised that I could only achieve this through being self-employed. Having spent 20 years in corporate NHS and local government environments managing substantial budgets, leading on clinical and other forms of governance, measuring impact, undertaking strategic and operational planning, I felt that I had sufficient skills to work for myself in a human scale business. I established ‘Fiona Day Consulting’ in 2016, and steadily reduced my employed role over the next few years.
My values and skills
My career continues to be a rich learning environment. My professional values of partnership working, using expertise to make a difference, and being curious, compassionate and empowering have been my compass as I navigated changes to my own career direction, and are at the heart of my coaching practice.
I love partnering with my clients who are usually both experts as well as leaders to help them to get on an ‘upward curve’ in their working lives and careers.
I specialise in using evidence-based ‘third wave’ approaches to behaviour change combined with adult development theory and neuroscience to support leaders who are working in complexity and transformational contexts. My focus is on developing professionals who are compassionate, embody their values, have a high level of present moment awareness, and are willing and able to take sustained, committed action to progress their goals in the face of challenge and adversity.
I am committed to the professionalisation of coaching and ensure that my coaching practice is as professional as my former medical practice. I actively engage in research, academic writing, and teaching to ensure I am up to date with the latest evidence-base, and supervise the professional development of coaches and coaching psychologists.
My coaching practice was independently accredited by the European Mentoring and Coaching Council at Master Practitioner level in 2021. I was awarded the doctoral-level award of Chartered Psychologist in Coaching Psychology by the British Psychological Society in 2023.
I can help you to your own best work yet
Whatever you are experiencing in your career or leadership role, change and growth are possible; I am very skilled at working with the complexity and ambiguity of medical and public heath careers and leadership roles, and I can help you to move forwards into the future and towards doing your own best work yet, on terms which will enable you to thrive.