Leaders In Healthcare

Leaders In Healthcare

Sameer Bhati, Director,Star Imaging & Path Labs, 0

Sameer has been associated with Star Imaging for over two decades now, and has held key roles at the company with efficiency and effective management skills.

Healthcare is such an industry in which the leaders work in a dynamic field to deliver safe, effective and high quality care. In order to succeed, the leader sought to lead administrative and clinical teams while managing the resources effectively. Healthcare leaders must adapt and innovate solutions constantly in the healthcare industry, as it is known for shifting regulations, rising costs, rapidly evolving clinical & technological advancements, and growing ethical concerns.

Effective leadership plays an active and important role in shaping the nature and culture of a healthcare organization. It also ensures the organisation's ability to handle difficult issues related to healthcare delivery. There are many leadership styles in healthcare that the managers can use. This helps the leaders interact with, relate to and motivate those under their charge.

Importance of Leadership in Healthcare Organizations
The healthcare industry offers various challenges. Despite working for long hours in a stressful and ever evolving work environment, the healthcare providers are expected to deliver high-quality and most efficient care possible. It requires effective and ethical leadership to navigate such challenges. The healthcare services are planned, directed, and coordinated by the healthcare leaders. They may have to lead a specific department or manage an entire facility. Their duty includes the following:
•Integrating new technologies
•Improving efficiency and quality
•Ensuring that the operations are carried out by following laws and regulations

Other duties of a healthcare leader include managing finances, monitoring budgets, setting goals &objectives, and communicating with clinical staff & department heads. In order to accomplish these duties, the leaders should have appropriate skills and leadership qualities like:
•Integrity:To deal with moral issues regarding life and death.
•Vision:To see the big picture.
•Strong Listening Skills:To hear the good, innovative ideas and to learn important information.

Benefits of Strong Healthcare Leadership
Many studies state that there is a connection between leadership styles and the quality of care provided to the patients. High quality care is generally safe, reliable, effective, efficient, equitable, and most importantly, patient centred. Achieving high levels of productivity is directly linked with providing high quality care the
ultimate goal of any healthcare organisation. In this industry, higher productivity means achieving desired health results.

Leadership Styles
Effective leadership leads to lower rates of adverse health results and increased patient satisfaction. In order to fulfil their responsibilities and respond to the problems they face, healthcare professionals need to opt a specific leadership style. Following are some leadership styles that healthcare professionals can opt for

Transactional Leadership:The importance of organization, supervision, and group performance is highlighted through this leadership style. The relationship between a healthcare executive and the staff is transactional. Staff members perform the duties assigned to them and in turn the leaders pay them their salaries. Punishments and rewards are used as motivational tools by the healthcare leaders. Transactional healthcare executives emphasize on clearly defined roles, respect for rules, procedures & standards, and close supervision.

Innovative Leadership:The focus of innovative leadership is to succeed in unpredictable situation & circumstances and to promote innovation in a healthcare organization. Such leaders believe in creating an organisational culture in which every service provider uses his/her innovative thinking to solve problems. Innovative leaders should develop methods to encourage staff to think differently and innovatively on how to tackle a challenge. They should also help them in finding innovative ways to effectively use limited resources.

Charismatic Leadership: Charismatic leaders communicate in a moving, emotionally charged manner. They influence the staff and persuade them into action by inspiring trust and expressing their opinions & visions with power. Charismatic leaders express their feelings emotionally. Though the feelings are positive, they cross the emotional spectrum. They have emotional sensitivity and control. They have excellent public speaking skills and engage others to interact socially. They interpret social situations and have the ability to connect with all types of people socially & emotionally.

Situational Leadership: The leaders who believe that different situations need different leadership styles to work follow the situational leadership approach. Such leaders first examine the tasks and then determine the type of leadership approach required to handle the situation well. For example, there comes a situation where staff members have limited skills for doing a particular task. If they have to learn a new task, then the situational leader may offer a lot of support while giving orders. On the other hand, if a situation arises where the staff members are required to perform certain tasks for which they have appropriate skills, then a situational leader may offer minimal guidance and support while delegating the responsibilities.

Transformational Leadership: The main focus of a transformational leader is to empower the staff members to initiate changes in order to transform the healthcare organization for the better. Such leaders look out for ways to share and explain the leadership process with the staff working across all positions. This leadership style states that any one, no matter what his/her designation or job description is,can be a leader.