Empowering NHS leaders to lead. 2018. (accessed 14 January 2019)

Best of TLNT 2017: success comes from strong cultures and it starts at the top. 2017. (accessed 14 January 2019)

Support for present and future leaders

24 January 2019
Volume 28 · Issue 2


Sam Foster, Chief Nurse, Oxford University Hospitals, considers how clinical leaders in the NHS can best be empowered to lead, in light of the recent Kerr report

‘It comes from the top' is a phrase often used to describe how a workplace culture feels. Thomas (2017) stated that if the heads of an organisation are committed to building the right culture, then it will cascade like a waterfall and, if the senior managers' levels of engagement are high, then their ability to engage others in the organisation is strong.

Last November saw the publication of a report commissioned by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) by Sir Ron Kerr (2018). Empowering NHS Leaders to Lead was the result of a review into how the executive leadership of the NHS could be better supported and empowered to ensure the best possible service is delivered for patients.

One of the report's findings stated:

‘The conditions in which leaders operate are stressful and difficult, with great responsibility and the highest stakes. Over time, this has led to a negative working culture in which both bullying and discrimination are prevalent and accepted.’

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