About Waipuna Hospice

Expert Palliative Care and Family Support

Waipuna Hospice provides specialist palliative care for patients living with life limiting illness and delivers support services for both patients and their families. While their focus is on Hospice at Home, they also have an Inpatient Unit for short term admissions, provide outpatient services and operate six retail stores and a depot. Hospice staff and volunteers care for each person as an individual. They are a compassionate and much needed organisation that provide symptom control and pain management, palliative nursing care, specialist medical support, respite care, practical support (such as meal preparation), bereavement support and a chaplaincy service.






patients and families receiving care per year


visits made by nurses


phone calls to patients in the community in a year

Their challenge

Waipuna Hospice is a complex business that straddles healthcare, community engagement, charity and fundraising, and retail. Many of Waipuna Hospice’s leaders balance clinical delivery with their role as a manager – the additional pressures felt across the healthcare industry in the last few years exposed a need for tools and strategies to help them succeed in their role.

“In many industries the challenge of moving into leadership is never an easy one – you often are a knowledge expert, a specialist in your role and then all of a sudden leadership is thrust in front of you. Healthcare is no stranger to this and I am certain this is having very long lasting effects on satisfaction and culture within healthcare.”

Richard Thurlow


Key areas of need

  • Understand the role of a leader: Recognise the full range of responsibilities that come with a leadership position and embrace an authentic strength-based approach. 
  • Time management: Understand how to balance clinical delivery with people leadership to ensure both task and people priorities are met.
  • Delegate effectively: Have a framework to delegate effectively to increase personal productivity and empower others. 
  • Communicate effectively: Understand communication styles and preferences and be able to moderate and adapt to ensure clarity, intent and influence across a range of stakeholders.

Our Solutions

A cohort of 12 participants undertook IML ANZ’s Intentional Leadership Foundations Program. This included leaders from clinical teams, HR, marketing, retail, volunteer engagement and operations. The Program ran across four months and included six full day facilitated sessions, two 1:1 coaching sessions, and three analytic tools. The Corporate Solutions team at IML ANZ worked with Waipuna Hospice to understand their challenges and customise a program and schedule that suited their purpose, needs and people. Based on the 70:20:10 learning methodology, the program design focused on integration into the workplace, line manager involvement and the support of coaching and mentoring.

The Results and Return on Investment

The Executive Management team have reported clear improvement in all competencies, including on average:

  • Average Increase in Manage Time and Priorities (11.7%)
  • Average Increase in Cultivate Business Acumen (6.5%)
  • Average Increase in Communicate effectively (5.4%) competencies