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Towards a new model of leadership

Published: 18th June 2013

This briefing paper published by the NHS Leadership Academy reviews the body of evidence which could contribute to a new Leadership Model for the NHS fit for current and future purpose.

Download Towards a new model of leadership

Whilst not specific to general practice, it is a robust source of evidence and many leaders will find the three core elements of the model helpful in assessing their own approach to leadership.

The currently desired shift in emphasis towards autonomy, responsibility and accountability with a strong orientation towards patient care and compassion, as well as timely and effective clinical interventions and practice, represents a contemporary modification in the desired Leadership Model for the NHS.

The authors undertook an extensive review of the literature on leadership in healthcare and related services industries in order to identify critical attributes for the desired Leadership Model for the NHS.

The main attributes are to:

  • Provide and justify a clear sense of purpose and contribution – this embraces behaviours and skills which enable an explicit focus on the needs and experiences of service users, continually reinforcing an inspiring vision of the mission and social contribution of the organisation or unit, couched in terms of service quality.
  • Motivate teams and individuals to work effectively – this also concerns the wider ability to work in closer collaboration with other organisations or occupations
  • Focus on improving system performance – this means enacting and encouraging the practice of service improvement, constructing compelling cases for change and carefully constructing plans for change based on a variety of kinds of evidence.

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