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Debate overview: Collaboration

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Should NHS organisations develop leaders for the whole NHS collaboratively or focus their efforts on their own future leaders?

The NLC is complementing the work on leadership development at a regional level by establishing national programmes and initiatives, for example on board development and top leaders, where there are economies of scale or added value in developing national cohorts.

Some organisations point to past weaknesses in national approaches

However, some organisations point to past weaknesses in national approaches, stress that an important current principle is subsidiarity, and argue that there will be far more success if organisations focus on developing their own future leaders, many of whom will inevitably move onto other organisations.

It is suggested that national programmes make it easier for organisations to opt out of their own responsibilities.

Others suggest that we need to develop leaders who understand the whole system and that those who have worked and trained only in one organisation or in one part of the sector offer far less to a potential employer.

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Readers' comments (1)

What do you think?

  • I think a leadership programme that produces well rounded leaders who understand the NHS as a whole is very important but these people also need to feel some attatchment to the specific organisation they work in. A good leader needs to know the locality and the staff well and how that particular system works and what makes it tick. Leaders who are trained and funded by NHS money should have to stay in the NHS for a certain amount of time to ensure that the public get their value for money. There are pros and cons for national and local schemes and maybe we need a mix of the two systems. Some jobs require a diverse experience where as some jobs benefit from local knowledge.

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