The Need for Effective Leadership in the Healthcare Industry
Leadership is necessary for any organization to grow and thrive. A good leader motivates, mentors and leads by example. When it comes to healthcare, doctors need to have effective leadership skills while also being skilled medical professionals. This becomes all the more relevant in the face of the current pandemic – the expectations from healthcare services are constantly increasing and to meet these rising expectations, doctors need to innovate, adapt and set an example. Doctors are pushed into roles that go beyond what their education has trained them for.
Leadership during the Pandemic
The pandemic was a scenario that combined originality with innovative decision making.
- The healthcare leaders had to make sure that patients were provided with the best of care while upgrading their infrastructure and protecting their staff.
- Employees had to be encouraged and means developed to handle the enormous stress the pandemic brought with it.
- While the world remains unsure of when the pandemic will end, it is up to the leaders of healthcare institutions to put into place new practices that will allow employee growth even during times like this.
- The pandemic also showed the need for collaboration between different healthcare institutions to meet people’s needs. Thus, it brought to the fore, the need for leaders to work with one another as well.
Good Leadership – What It Takes
A good leader is open to suggestions and feedback.
- In healthcare, the patient is always the first priority. Providing top quality care is of course the mainstay of every hospital but it does not stop there.
- Communication with the patient is of utmost importance.
- An effective healthcare organization constantly listens to the patients’ concerns, requirements and reviews and in case of an issue, addresses it and modifies its practices.
- Thus, it needs a leader who is open to suggestions and feedback.
- When the leader shows the way by his/her actions, the rest of the staff will follow.
A good leader understands his staff.
- Leadership is not about invoking fear in the employees. Instead, it is about being fair and treating all employees with dignity and respect.
- The employees should be provided with an environment in which they can voice their suggestions as well as concerns.
- A good leader will allow his/her employees to try out new ideas while establishing safe boundaries in which to do so.
- He/she makes sure employees are clear about their role in the organization and appreciation for a job well done is never withheld.
- Similarly, mistakes are regarded as learning experiences and they are analyzed and worked on with an objective frame of mind.
- Employees not performing up to potential and employees behaving unprofessionally are other issues a leader needs to address effectively depending on the circumstance.
- A good leader constantly tries to upgrade the staff’s skills so that they can serve the patient better. Employees are provided with a happy workspace which challenges but also encourages and appreciates.
Also Read: Women and Leadership Roles in Healthcare
A good leader ensures cohesion in his team.
- In a heath care setting, team work is essential. It is the leader’s responsibility to make sure the team works well together.
- He/she should have a clear goal and a path to achieve it.
- Every member is given a role and responsibilities are assigned.
- The members should also be clear about their contribution to the overall objective.
- The environment should be one of support and encouragement while also addressing problems and coming up with solutions as a team.
- Decisions are always taken after discussions and are never an order from the leader to his/her team.
A good leader is a good mentor.
- It is necessary for leaders to pass on their experiences to their juniors. After all, the juniors will be the future leaders of the organization and the leader’s experiences will be an invaluable lesson to them.
- While some institutions have mentorship programs, they are not always needed for a leader to take on the role of a mentor.
- The role might come naturally to them as they want the organization to keep growing and performing even after they have moved from it.
A good leader is not afraid to test the boundaries.
- The healthcare field needs people who are open to changes and willing to try innovations.
- Whether it is new inventions in the medical field which change procedures for the better or just new patient management techniques, a leader should never shy away from trying something new just because his comfort level is challenged.
A good leader is a good teacher.
- This is an essential trait for a leader, especially in the healthcare sector.
- It is the leader’s responsibility to share his knowledge for the benefit of the people.
- When a leader becomes a teacher to his employees, he also wins their trust.
- An organization which has its employees aligned with the leadership invariably performs better.