Healthcare is an industry much like an ecosystem whose matrix-like qualities benefit from collaboration and innovative mindsets.

Please answer the following post, there are sample responses at the bottom. Please use the attached north house book to answer.

 

Emerging leadership and healthcare

COLLAPSE

Top of Form

Healthcare is an industry much like an ecosystem whose matrix-like qualities benefit from collaboration and innovative mindsets.  Traditional leadership assumptions come from industrial manufacturing where the goal is maximizing production and reducing variance.  Such doctrines that employ linear top-down thinking also promote organizational culture unawareness and being unprepared for innovation and require management, not leadership (Weberg, 2012 p. 269).  Invariably there will be an unforeseen situation that one must learn their way out of.  Thus far our studies have been on scenarios, practices and formulas leadership with major focus on the leader’s relationship with the follower. Shared leadership focuses on practices of the social process rather than personal characteristics of people at the top (Fletcher & Kaufer, 2003 p. 22-23).   Complexity leadership theory is a framework for studying emergent leadership as it relates to the bureaucracy and is divided into three types: adaptive, enabling, and administrative (Marion & Uhl-Bien 2008 p. 198).

Given that healthcare is as previously described, a matrix and ecosystem emergent leadership is critical to address all the challenges primarily because many of the issues will be discovered and solved by subject matter experts who are the people in the trenches so to speak.  Even if members of the c-suite came from within the organization there is no way they are going to know the nuances of every department.  Even medical school has specialties and fellowships.

Fletcher, J. K., & Kaufer, K. (2003).  C. L. Pearce, & J. A. Conger, Shared leadership. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Marion, R., & Uhl-Bien, M. (2008). Complexity Leadership – Part 1. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Weberg, D. (2012). Complexity Leadership: A Healthcare Imperative. Nursing Forum, 47(4), 268-277. doi:10.1111/j.1744-6198.2012.00276.x

Sample Responses

Dear Dudlly,

1. Thank you for your post. I agree with your comments in regards to emergent leadership being necessary because it allows the representation from the trenches. One of the things that my organization does to open up such communications channels is the opportunity to email the CEO/ Chairman directly about a concern or an idea. I am not sure how often it is used but it does show the interest of the administration in showing openness.

How do you think an organization can embrace emergent leadership?

2. I have been an emergent leader via continuous improvement projects and I have to say, emergent leadership is only an effective approach if the ideas that result are well received by management–otherwise it can be taken as a power struggle. Part of why I wanted to take this course was to learn how to influence upper management. In the past great ideas even with quantitative evidence have not gotten me the resources I need to drive change. My colleagues have been more than happy to volunteer their time and energy however there’s always a component that requires them to clear the time with their manager. I’ve encountered the most resistance when I’m challenging long-established practices or systems or so-called-fixes that ended up creating more problems. I’ve had much success with taking charge on projects where management and employees agree it’s a universal problem.

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