There are several well-known attributes that make a great leader – strong organisational skills, decisiveness when it comes to making difficult decisions and the ability to comfortably delegate responsibility and solve complex problems under pressure. However there is one key leadership trait often overlooked in health and social care – attitude. Indeed to be successful in the health sector, a leader must have an attitude that inspires colleagues and creates a free-thinking, progressive atmosphere.
An impressive resume and extensive training only go so far if a leader fails to project an optimistic attitude, as positivity is what drives the workforce; it is the backbone of great leadership. Indeed, simply smiling, complimenting and investing an interest in employees can play a pivotal role in motivating them and achieving success.
It is well documented that leaders within health and social care need to lead with a purpose and play a role in influencing legislative policy. Nonetheless, the ability to successfully lead a team through a time of adversity by setting a positive example is often ignored.
Such an attitude is especially important when the workplace is facing a problem. In the health sector employees can struggle with stress while working in an emotionally charged environment. A leader with the right attitude will be able to effectively deal with such problems by empowering workers to recognise that they are working to save lives on a daily basis. A positive attitude forms a quintessential part of leadership in any organisation.
Here are 5 tips on how to become an effective leader in health and social care:
1. Concentrate on tasks ahead but maintain an approachable attitude. Employees need to know that they can ask questions about delicate issues such as stress and be able to speak openly about it.
2. All leaders will have experienced failure at some point and should know how to react when they do not succeed. Although there is a need to always learn from errors, there is no point dwelling on them for too long – a leader should always look to the future and positively re-identify targets.
3. Work with positive people. Central to maintaining positivity is to work with people who share your desire to succeed. Leaders should always surround themselves with the right people.
4. Be grateful. Appreciate the comforts you have in your private and professional lives and you will be more likely to lead rationally.
5. Leaders need to know how others are feeling. If a worker seems upset or down, it is the leader’s responsibility to provide a solution to the problem. In health and social care, leaders need to constantly monitor staff to ensure that they are engaged and provide support if they are not.
A bad attitude can spread like a virus affecting everybody within an organisation. This is why attitude is the secret recipe for success when it comes to leadership. Workers may have the skills and experience, but without the right mentality, this counts for little.
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