Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 2—How Is It Demonstrated?

Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 2—How Is It Demonstrated?

Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 2—How Is It Demonstrated?

Today we have the second  post in a three-part series from our regular contributor, Lindsey Harper Mac. Lindsey is a professional writer living in the Indianapolis area. She specializes in writing guest posts on social media and education. Currently, Lindsey is completing work on her master’s degree. You can find links to some of her earlier posts at the end of the article and you can find the first post in this series at http://wisewolftalking.com/2012/12/31/leadership-in-the-medical-field-series-part-1-what-it-is-why-its-critical/

In Part I of this three-article series, we introduced the concept of leadership in the medical field and explained how critically important the ability is for healthcare providers to demonstrate. The strong and unmistakable correlation between effective leadership in the medical field and the subsequent quality of patient care and satisfactory outcomes was established. That aspect of quality leadership’s immediate impact on patient care was used to justify educating all levels of healthcare personnel, from students in a medical assistant program to those in their first year of their internship. The diagrammatic tool developed by the NHS Institute for Innovation & Improvement and the Academy of Royal Medical Colleges (ARMC) was introduced as a tool to help professionals self-evaluate their leadership skills and identify any areas of weakness that might require attention. This visual tool, deemed The Medical Leadership Competency Framework, was described in brief detail. Now, in Part 2 of this series, we’ll turn our attention to a single wedge of the pie, “Demonstrating Personal Qualities” necessary to be an effective and capable medical leader.

Personal Qualities for Medical Leadership

According to the NHS and ARMC’s Medical Leadership Competency Framework tool, there are four fundamental character aspects necessary for healthcare workers to demonstrate in order to be considered effective leaders. These aspects are:

  • Developing self-awareness.
  • Managing yourself effectively.
  • Continuing personal development.
  • Acting with integrity.

The four identified characteristics correspond very closely to the second of three key skill sets for an effective healthcare manager, as identified by Dr. Len Sperry’s textbook “Becoming An Effective Health Care Manager: The Essential Skills of Leadership.” We can thus dismiss any objections that the Medical Leadership Competency Framework is applicable only to the U.K.’s socialized medicine standard as opposed to the U.S. model.

Developing Self Awareness

This aspect of leadership seems hardly worth mentioning, until one considers the usual negative effects of a self-absorbed or socially incompetent manager has on a department. Although self-awareness is partly an aspect of maturity, it is also one that can be accelerated with various “reflective practices.” The goal is to perceive one’s own “values, principles, and assumptions” and understand the influence this has on decisions and behaviors.

Managing Yourself Effectively

Translated across the Atlantic, this subtitle speaks to a leader’s ability to demonstrate excellent time management skills, efficiency and establish and maintain both short and long-term goals. This information then needs to be clearly and regularly shared with the team a leader manages.

Continuing Personal Development

Never stop learning might be an alternate subtitle for this suggestion. Aspects of leadership can be taught and learned, either formally or informally. Whether one takes a class or adopts an informal mentor, there is always something to learn that will, in turn, improve your leadership abilities.

Acting with Integrity

Acting with integrity is expressed in Green and Gell’s article as being a role model worthy of your subordinate’s imitation. It also speaks to a type of direct communication that precludes passive-aggressive behavior, innuendo or purposely-misleading statements.

Conclusions Regarding Personal Characteristics of Leadership

As Green and Gell, authors of the article for BMJ Career’s website, “Effective Medical Leadership for Consultants: Personal Qualities and Working with Others,” emphasize, “Research has shown that, within healthcare, shared leadership delivers the best results through a shared sense of responsibility for the success of the organization and the quality of the services provided.” This type of personal and shared leadership will be particularly necessary for those health care organizations experiencing disruptions from mandated changes of the Affordable Care Act.

In the third and final article in this series, we’ll discuss how the above personality traits can be used to effectively communicate with others and to ultimately cultivate and develop a successful career in the medical field.

About the author: Lindsey Harper Mac is a professional writer living in the Indianapolis area. She specializes in writing guest posts on social media and education. Currently, Lindsey is completing work on her master’s degree.

Also by Lindsey Harper Mac

Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 1—What It Is & Why It’s Critical

Career Development Part 1 – Why Get An Advanced Degree? The Answer is Obvious

Career Development Part 2: Want a Promotion? Focus on Factors Within your Control

Career Development Part 3: Performance Reviews: Painful or Helpful?

Entrepreneurs Growing Forward

Why “be the best” when you could be the one making the rules? | WiseWolf Talking – the WiseWolf Coaching Blog.

The Makings of a Great Leader | WiseWolf Talking – the WiseWolf Coaching Blog.

3 Replies to “Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 2—How Is It Demonstrated?”

  1. Pingback: Career Development: Corporate Culture 101: What You Need to Get Started SERIES Part 1: Self-Management Skills | WiseWolf Talking - the WiseWolf Coaching Blog
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  3. Pingback: Leadership in the Medical Field: Series Part 3 -- Soft Skills & Leadership | WiseWolf Talking - the WiseWolf Coaching Blog

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