One of the key operating principles from the working paper of the Commission into the Future of Hospice Care (2012) identified leadership as a core requirement both at the strategic and operational level within organisations. St. Richard’s Hospice has been fortunate in that two members of the senior management team have completed the MA in Hospice Leadership at Lancaster University. We recognised that to embrace the new era of empowering the wider teams and individuals to recognise leadership as a core skill and understand how they can influence current and future development of the sector is core to sustainability.
Up until recently most of the investment in leadership and management has been directed toward individuals where there was an element of self-selection linked to career aspirations or performance management issues where new skills and knowledge were required to deliver their role.
The hospice has now developed and implemented a process where the identification of leadership and management is a bottom-up approach starting at the annual appraisal linked to identifying and nurturing future leaders. We recognised that many of our current staff did not recognise that they already possess inherent skills especially in terms of emotional intelligence, innovation and personal motivation.
As a hospice we have:
Provided people with the knowledge about how to make best use of appraisal and demonstrating the impact in organisational development.
Emphasised the hospice strategic objectives, linking their current role to how they are delivering against these objectives and empowering them to contribute to our future strategic direction.
Establishing longer term career aspirations and navigating people toward achieving these.
Creating opportunities for staff to complete formal leadership and management qualifications (ILM Levels 3 and 5).
The next stage in the process, identified by the future leaders is establishing the need for coaching and mentoring and how this will support continuous improvement.
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