The mindset challenge is to recognise that leadership is no longer just about managing a business or running an institution. New era talent management is about building bridges, coalitions and engagement opportunities. Geraint Martin, CEO, Counties Manukau District Health Board shares insights with Christine O’Donnell.
When it comes to leadership and management in healthcare the major drivers and challenges ahead in Australasia are truly global. Doctors and nurses travel around the world and so do leaders in healthcare. There are consequences for recruitment in the future as systems haven’t done well encouraging talent management. The reality is that there simply isn’t an endless pot of people to move around and put into posts and there is a tendency to think that if we don’t have the people, we import a few more.
The challenge in leadership in Australasia is complex and multilayered. What we need to be doing is making sure that we manage our talent much more effectively and manage our leaders much more effectively. They don’t come into the system as leaders, they come in as managers and that’s what they are. We need to plan to develop those managers, not just where we go to recruit.
An important starting point in addressing this challenge is to define what we want from our leaders. We don’t just want people technically competent at leading institutions. Whilst important, it’s not the totality of the leadership challenge that we have. People need to be able to manage complex challenges right across the health systems and across institutions. In fact, across many sectors. Because the things that affect the demand for healthcare are often outside the control of the hospital or health system. We need to work multisectorially and we need people not to just manage in a silo. Rather, we need people who can manage complex systems.
Systems need to be creating leaders who know how to create opportunities and then get people to fill them. Get followers who themselves are leaders to fill the opportunities. It’s much more about how do you empower people, how do you create new partnerships? How do you get people to thrive and develop themselves?
In the future, the trend long term and the strong gravitational pull is that the patient will become as much the leader of their own health as a doctor or a nurse. They will have conditions they will manage for thirty or forty years. It’s no longer a situation where you will manage an episode and go and see a technician and that sorts you out. This is about an ongoing leadership relationship and the patient them self has as much to do to determine their own healthcare outcome as the doctor or nurse. The patient is as much the leader of the future. It’s a question of how you build coalitions, engagement and opportunities. It’s no longer just about running a business or running an institution.
Ms Christine O’Donnell, Executive Dirctor, HardyGroup Search and Recruitment
Read Christine’s profile: www.hardygroupintl.com/christineodonnell
Mr Geraint Martin, CEO, Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB)