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Leading and managing a multidisciplinary team in health and social care: a critical and personal reflection

20 June 2024
Volume 33 · Issue 12

Abstract

This article presents a synthesis of the leadership and management knowledge and experience gained while participating in project work in health and social care. The first part presents a critical evaluation of leadership and management across health and social care services, with a focus on a multidisciplinary team in a ward setting. The second part presents a critical reflection on a personal leadership and management experience during the project using an appropriate model of reflection, a synthesis of lessons learnt and application to future practice as a registered nurse. A range of theories and frameworks related to leadership, management and team working are critically evaluated and a critical understanding of both political and economic perspectives within today's healthcare system is presented.

Leadership is about setting the direction of a team, influencing others and managing change, whereas management involves organising resources and maintaining stability (van Diggele et al, 2020). Leadership produces change and movement whereas management produces order and consistency (van Diggele et al, 2020). Several leadership styles have been demonstrated to be effective in health and social care, including autocratic, laissez-faire, democratic, transformational, servant, situational and transactional (Thompson and Glasø, 2018; Specchia et al, 2021). McGregor's X-Y management theory, originally published in 1960, is widely used in health and social care (McGregor, 1985; Yildirim and Albez, 2022). Theory X uses coercion and control to achieve organisational goals whereas theory Y uses motivation. McGregor concluded that theory Y is the most appropriate method for managers to get the best out of their teams (McGregor, 1985; Yildirim and Albez, 2022).

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