Let’s tackle a few myths. Myth number one, leadership is only for those in management positions. Wrong, there are many different sorts of leadership, and not all are wedded to management roles. You can lead patients or clients, offer temporary project leadership, provide leadership to a student or colleague. Leadership involves caring for and helping others. Myth number two, leadership is a complex and inaccessible subject that practitioners take years to master. Wrong, leadership can be studied incrementally and with gradually increasing levels of complexity. It need not be esoteric and only for the confident. Myth number three, leadership is a knack, an aptitude or style, something that cannot be learned or readily improved upon. Wrong again, most people have skills that are relevant to leadership (e.g. listening, explaining, guiding, planning) and all can be developed further through Open University leadership courses. No leader is perfect in every area however, and just as your learning will improve what you are already accomplished at, so it can also help you make good other areas where you harbour anxieties.
“Steps should be taken to identify and train those within the NHS who have the potential to exercise leadership. There needs to be sustained investment in developing leadership skills at all levels in the NHS.”
You and your colleagues are the most precious resource of the health and social care world. What is delivered there is dependent on what you know, can do, can share and how you change practice. It’s vital then that organisations nurture your ability to change, to encourage and support others. It’s equally important that you enhance change agency skills too - searching out what stimulates you most, what sustains your and others’ motivation. Open University courses on leadership are for you, for practice and for service.
“Every member of the health service team needs to be encouraged to demonstrate their own leadership skills and become not just a practitioner but a partner and a leader.”
National Leadership Council
Courses facilitating leadership
K344 Developing your leadership potential
K827 Leading healthcare improvements
Information on other courses addressing leadership
Short CPD courses:
GGB003 Effective leadership skills (CPD)
GB019 Leading organisational change (CPD)
GGB018 Advancing your personal leadership (CPD)
GB002 Managing performance through people