Black Box Thinking

13 February 2017

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The NHS Leadership Recognition Awards 2016-2017 awards were held on Wednesday 25 January 2017 at The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle.

One of the guest speakers was Matthew Syed who delivered a keynote session on black box thinking. This video shares the audience reaction to Matthew's presentation.


About Matthew Syed

Born in 1970 to a Pakistani father and Welsh mother, Matthew Syed attended a state school in Reading, leaving at the age of sixteen to focus on table tennis. He taught himself A Levels in the downtime after training, working his way through various text books, before applying to the University of London Examination Board to sit his papers in a small room near King’s Cross along with students doing their re-sits.

Having passed his A Levels, he was accepted by Balliol College, Oxford University to study for a degree in philosophy, politics and economics. He played in the Olympic Games in Barcelona towards the end of his first year at Balliol, and gained a prize-winning First Class degree four months after becoming the British table tennis number one in 1995.

He is, perhaps unsurprisingly, a strong believer that sporting and academic excellence are not mutually exclusive. Indeed, he argues that developing the body and mind provides a powerful synergy – a point well understood by the Ancient Greeks.

Matthew was a co-founder and is a trustee of Greenhouse, a charity that empowers youngsters through sport. Greenhouse currently supports more than 10,000 young people on 31 full-time school programmes. He is also a member of the FA’s High Performance Committee alongside Sir Dave Brailsford and Baroness Campbell, and an ambassador for the PiXL educational foundation.

About the NHS Leadership Recognition Awards

The NHS Leadership Recognition Awards celebrate leaders at all levels and across all professions who have ultimately improved people’s health, the public’s experience of the NHS and those leaders who we are truly proud to work alongside.

Read more about the awards and the winners here.