Skip to 0 minutes and 5 secondsThis week, we're going to talk about the critical importance of leadership for healthcare improvement. We've already mentioned that there are many quality improvement tools and techniques out there, but how far those can be implemented in real organisations depends on the quality of leadership that's available. To understand this, we'll first introduce you to the whole notion of leadership, looking at general theories of leadership and examples of how transformational leadership can change things in health organisations. We're then going to focus in on the specific issue of clinical leadership, which has become a hot topic around the world. In fact, Chris Ham has said recently that clinical leadership has moved from being the dark side to centre stage.

Skip to 0 minutes and 53 secondsThe idea that doctors and nurses becoming leaders have greater credibility, that they make more effective decisions, and improve services. We will investigate that idea critically, looking at both the evidence to support that and some problems with it. Lastly, we'll introduce you to the notion of collective distributed leadership. The idea here is that leadership is not just the preserve of individuals or heroic leaders, but it's something that is shared within the organisation between different people, that we all have a role to play in leading change. And this idea might be especially important given the organisational realities that we already discussed in week two.

Skip to 1 minute and 34 secondsTo explore these issues you'll be hearing from practitioners such as Professor Erwin Loh from Monash Health in Australia and academics from the Warwick Business School and Monash University, including Graham Currie and Rick Iedema.

Welcome to leadership for healthcare improvement

Welcome to Week 3. In this week we build on the insights from last week (on the organisational context) to turn to the critical importance of leadership. While, as we have seen, there are many tools and techniques for healthcare improvement, the extent to which these can be successfully introduced and sustained depends heavily on the nature and quality of leadership. To explore this issue, we focus on three main blocks of content: Introducing leadership; Clinical leadership; and Alternative perspectives on leadership.

First, we briefly introduce the academic literature on leadership and provide examples from healthcare settings of how successful leaders can have a transformational impact. In the second block, we turn to the more specific issue of clinical leadership. In recent years, there has been a growing enthusiasm for the goal of empowering doctors and other clinical professionals to take on leadership roles in the belief that these leaders are more likely to have the skills and credibility to initiate and drive change. However, while there is considerable evidence to support this view, we shall see how the task of recruiting and incentivising clinical leaders is often far from straightforward.

In the final block we turn to alternative views about leadership which move away from the notion of individual or ‘heroic’ leaders to the idea that leadership activities might be shared or distributed across teams or groups of professionals. This approach may be more aligned to the realities of health organisations, discussed in week two, and has become increasingly popular in many counties. To explore these themes, week three will include contributions from leading practitioners, including Professors Erwin Loh from Monash Health and Matthew Cripps, from NHS England. You will also hear from academics based at Warwick Business School and Monash University.

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Leadership for Healthcare Improvement and Innovation

The University of Warwick

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