The decision of King's College Hospital foundation trust to appoint corporate big-hitter Tim Smart to its top job will provide a fascinating trial for private sector management techniques at the highest levels of the NHS.

King's is, by any measure, a complex organisation - it is vast, internationally renowned and in the throes of building a world class health sciences centre with equally illustrious partners. The chief executive, currently a BT senior manager, will face the biggest challenge of his already impressive career.

He says he has dreamt of running a hospital; now he has his chance.

It is his declared intention to drive management efficiency and focus on the patient experience which will attract most attention in the NHS.

Many health service staff have an innate suspicion of the private sector. How well will they adapt to a fresh approach from a leader with only a tangential experience of the NHS?

Bringing experience from a global brand to a world famous hospital will be a fascinating journey, and one that HSJ will be following.

See King's College Hospital appoints new chief executive