interviews

07.12.16

Leadership development should be for all in health and care

Source: NHE Nov/Dec 16

Back in August, Stephen Hart joined Health Education England (HEE) as the organisation’s new director of leadership development, which includes taking charge of the work of the NHS Leadership Academy. He talks to NHE’s David Stevenson about his plans for the future.

Leadership development should be made available to every part of the health and care system, according to HEE’s new director of leadership development. 

Speaking to NHE after two months in post, Stephen Hart said that one of the key developments he hopes to make is that “leadership development is something that is done in all parts of the system, not just in the big acute part where there are traditional hierarchies within which we can work comfortably”. 

Hart, who had a long career in the Royal Marines where he worked as a leadership practitioner in operational roles around the world, added that as the NHS Leadership Academy has become part of HEE – following a recommendation by Lord Rose last year – the organisation has entered the next phase of development. 

Addressing leadership challenges 

As part of this evolution, he said the Academy would be further identifying the challenges of leadership across the system. “You can probably describe them as coming across behaviours, culture and numbers,” he explained. “In terms of behaviours, there are some colleagues who need some support in making sure that care and compassion lie at the heart of our behaviours. 

“That is not just a question of bringing people onto programmes in a local leadership academy or in Leeds. If we just bring people onto programmes we will not be addressing the culture. 

“I think there is a whole amount of work for us to do, as the Academy, to support leaders in place to go out and work with the system to understand, at a local level, what support they need and how we can leverage in our own faculty and our understanding. It is about having the right people with the right knowledge, skills and attitude in the right jobs.” 

Hart added that integrating talent management into leadership development within the sector is a real opportunity for the Academy going forward, as it will give local health economies the ability to identify colleagues who are in the right place to benefit from development opportunities. 

Earlier this year it was identified that the average tenure of a trust CEO is approximately two years, a record that Hart wants to remedy. “We have created a system and culture whereby CEOs have a tenure of two years; I do not think it is the right way to progress as a service,” he said. “How we support and develop CEOs, and indeed those that are regulating and supporting those key individuals, is crucial.” 

In conjunction with NHS Providers, the Leadership Academy is working on an aspiring CEOs programme to ensure candidates have the “right support and mentoring to be a success in their roles”. 

But he added that the provider sector is only one part of the service. 

“The other part of our service, which it is absolutely key for the Academy to reach out to is primary care, public health, local government, the full range of our system that provide health and care,” said Hart.

STP opportunities in a landscape of ‘no positional power’ 

Discussing the changing landscape in health and social care, especially with the advent of the STP footprints, Hart said: “We have connected with every single one of the STPs to offer them a suite of development opportunities that they can engage with. 

“That is about harnessing the local health economies and the representatives of those local health economy STPs to identify what their needs are, so that the Academy can orientate itself and provide the bespoke support that is needed to support the unique challenges that face every one of the footprints. It is something that we are taking forward.” 

Hart added that the new way of integrated working is about “leading in a way where there isn’t positional power”.  

“It isn’t about one individual at the top who is able to exercise power through a joined-up system,” he explained. “It is about giving and supporting individuals at every level the opportunity to develop the right knowledge, skills, and behaviours to work across the system where there isn’t positional power, but where we know that if we identify the synergies and work together we will identify much better and efficient working practice.”

Although noting that long-term leadership development can be challenging, because it requires both financial and time resource, Hart is confident that those involved in the STP process understand its importance and are committed to the principle. 

“I think our colleagues in STPs know the importance of leadership development and, as these groups become more mature, we will be able to work with them in a comprehensive way across all levels to deliver the leadership development that we know works and is evidenced to work,” he told NHE, adding that the Academy will also be refreshing its offer. 

c. NHS Leadership Acadmey edit

Clearer and more coherent offering 

As well as continuing to provide individual and group development opportunities, which the Academy has become widely respected for since its genesis in 2012, Hart added that the organisation will be  engaging with organisations at a local level, “working to build the type of management systems and processes” so that the right cohorts of people are coming onto the programmes. 

“There will also be a more coherent offer,” he said. “The offer from our local leadership academies will become more coherent and consistent, so that the leadership development opportunities in one part of the country are matched by the development opportunities available in another. 

“It will also be pushed out to all parts of the system be it primary care, mental health trusts or into the smaller parts of the economy where money is even scarcer, to make sure we have outstanding leadership everywhere across the service.” 

The Academy will also be developing a commission focusing on leadership and inclusion. “That will look to identify how it is that we are going to change leadership behaviours such that inclusion sits at the heart of being a leader in health and care,” said Hart. “I think that is a really important piece of work.” 

According to Hart, the commission’s work will be mentioned in the upcoming National Leadership Strategic Framework. The King’s Fund’s Professor Michael White, who has been developing the framework, writes about the importance of inclusion and compassion in leadership on page 38. 

“The commission is going to be action research,” added Hart. “It is about going out into the system and finding out what works, what delivers best practice and then looking to blow oxygen on that and roll it out across the system.”

© NHS Leadership Academy

FOR MORE INFORMATION

W: www.leadershipacademy.nhs.uk

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@nationalhealthexecutive.com

Comments

Bob   09/12/2016 at 15:28

I think you mean Michael West rather than Michael White. Also I don't see any 'commission' mentioned in the NILD Framework.

Andrea Overton   09/12/2016 at 20:11

Developing People-Develoing Care is a welcome and timely refocus for all of us working in leadership development. There is lots in this interview to welcome too. The easiest way to achieve a 'coherent and consistent' Academy offer is to look at what underpinning principles we share. I hope one such principle will be the importance of 'self-leadership'. Not only does this lie at the heart of all effective and inclusive leadership it applies to any role and any level of responsibility.

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest healthcare news

Winter pressures mounting as A&E attendances creep up by 4.4%

14/12/2017Winter pressures mounting as A&E attendances creep up by 4.4%

NHS England’s latest figures show that although the health service is responding well to growing pressure, it is close to “full stretch... more >
Kent trust appoints NHSI director as new chief executive

14/12/2017Kent trust appoints NHSI director as new chief executive

Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells (MTW) NHS Trust has appointed Miles Scott as its new chief executive. Scott joins the trust from his position ... more >
CCGs must move towards strategic commissioning to improve local care

14/12/2017CCGs must move towards strategic commissioning to improve local care

CCGs in the UK should move towards strategic commissioning if the healthcare system is to embrace a move toward integrated local care, claims a n... more >
681 149x260 NHE Subscribe button

the scalpel's daily blog

Ten lessons to support new care models locally

29/11/2017Ten lessons to support new care models locally

Anna Starling, policy fellow at the Health Foundation, offers the top 10 lessons for local leaders seeking to make systematic improvements across services, all based on first-hand accounts from vanguard officials. Redesigning health and social care services across traditional boundaries is not easy. Making change in complex environments, ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

comment

Strategic investment planning

13/12/2017Strategic investment planning

Paul Turton, head of solutions development at NHS Supply Chain, looks at how trusts can unlock investment in medical equipment to alleviate finan... more >
A fight worth fighting

13/12/2017A fight worth fighting

Professor Wendy Burn, president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych), laments the current lack of public understanding about severe me... more >
Developing a wellness workforce

13/12/2017Developing a wellness workforce

The entire health and care sector needs to come together to prepare for a shift towards health creation, writes Merron Simpson, chief executive o... more >
The future of the nursing workforce: what next?

13/12/2017The future of the nursing workforce: what next?

Janet Davies, chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), argues that the evidence of the importance of prioriti... more >

last word

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

Terry John, co-chair of the BMA & BDA Refugee Doctors and Dentists Liaison Group and chair of the union’s international committee, talk... more > more last word articles >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital e... read more >

health service focus

Release full market value against surplus and decommissioned assets

28/11/2017Release full market value against surplus and decommissioned assets

Advertisement feature: Oliver Pearson, sal... more >
Operation Barcode: selecting technology to succeed

22/11/2017Operation Barcode: selecting technology to succeed

The benefits of Scan4Safety have been widely ... more >