Leadership in Social Care – Do you care?

j0321189.jpgFollowing a recent government report highlighting a leadership crisis in the business world, we now have a parliamentary review in Social Care which highlights a similar lack of leadership with in the social care sector. What’s it about and how can we ensure leadership skills are developed for the future?

Social Care Minster Ivan Lewis announced that the centre piece for the government’s vision for 21st century social care will be a skills academy, Social Care21 to focus on developing world class leadership and commissioning in the public, private and voluntary sectors.

It seems that Leadership – or the lack of it – is very topical at the moment. A government report recently highlighted that the business world in general is suffering from a distinct lack of leadership. Managers that we hope will be at the fore front of our businesses and organisations in the future do not have the inspirational leadership role models that they need around them in their work places. In social care there is no strong vision or ambition driving how services for adults can be delivered. Dame Denise Platt observes that the service calls for imagination, excitement and enthusiasm which requires leadership across the care sector at all levels.

There is an argument that owner managers in social care are the leaders in the private sector and that Dame Denise Platt ignored them in her review. I wonder were there enough of them to shout loudly enough? Why were they overlooked or over shadowed by the leaders of large organizations? How will they resolve to be heard in the future? More importantly, how will they mentor, coach and inspire leaders of the future?

A skills academy is a wonderful vision, I hope it will achieve it’s aims but it will take time to get up such an enormous undertaking up and running smoothly. I would suggest that in the meantime we take responsibility where we are to step up to the leadership challenge.

How? By understanding what leadership is and how we become leaders within our own domains and abilities. By creating a clear vision for ourselves, our organizations and our employees. By deciding to be the best and give our best in what ever our role is. By creating mentors and role models for those who work for us. You might not be (or aspire to be) a chief executive of a large organization but your part in nurturing leadership is just as important. In order to have strong leadership in the sector a t all levels it has to touch all levels, including ground level.

Are you ready to step up to the leadership challenge?

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