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  • Writer's pictureJackie Booth

Improving leadership in the NHS

Supporting you and your teams in the challenging NHS environment

Having been a nurse and now working with NHS Community Trusts as a leadership coach, I understand and appreciate how difficult it can be to hold a leadership role in the NHS.

It can be tough to know where to start to see tenable improvements and difference.

In this blog, I explore 6 options to help your leadership promote team work, collaboration and service delivery improvements.

And if you are a leader in the NHS feeling like you and your peers could do with support and guidance to bring your team members together, do get in touch.


Specialist Coaching and Training Programmes for Leadership in the NHS.

Over the last couple of years, I’ve been working with NHS community trusts delivering coaching and training programmes, to both front line staff and senior leaders. I’ve loved it. Having started my career in the NHS as a nurse many years ago, in a way it feels I’ve come full circle.

I feel privileged to be working with people who really care about the future of healthcare, want to improve outcomes for patients and their families, and who share many of my core values.

Many people I work with in the NHS want to work in an environment where leadership at all levels is collaborative, compassionate and inclusive, in order to support the delivery of high-quality care.

And I’m happy to help them achieve that.

What I have witnessed is that in the NHS, as a whole, being a leader isn’t easy. People are constantly dealing with challenges such as:

●       high turnover of staff

●       low morale

●       unclear roles and responsibilities

●       resistance to change

●       resource constraints

●       lack of effective communication.

All of these challenges, alongside an important and high pressure role makes leadership, particularly strong, effective and inspiring leadership, really difficult.

How to improve leadership and your NHS team

Invest in leadership development

Consistently support individuals and teams to build a more cohesive, productive and innovative working environment. 

Leadership development will help staff receive support to manage their time and their team, build morale, deal with toxicity, resolve conflict and, vitally,  develop effective communication skills that support collaborative working.

Be open and honest when you’re communicating

Encourage people to voice their concerns, provide feedback, and share innovative ideas without negativity or fear of reprisal.

If you don’t know what your problems and issues are, you can’t rectify them.

Be clear about what you’re working towards

 Especially in large organisations like the NHS, it is important to be clear what you are working towards, collectively.

As a leader, are you setting clear goals and expectations? Does your team understand their individual and collective roles and responsibilities?

In the long run, being clear will lessen confusion and resistance to change and will ideally promote a sense of purpose.

Be collaborative

Create a working environment where individuals feel heard.

Leaders are key to encouraging and facilitating team working, creating opportunities for projects that bring wider teams and departments together, as well as promoting regular team building activities. 

Look after your staff

Their well-being is vital, without it, NHS services wouldn’t exist.

When you’re in a leadership role, you’re in a position to be able to promote and support work-life balance, offer mental health support and crucially, recognise and reward people for their hard work.

Small things that can make a huge difference to the health and well-being of your teams.

Be inclusive

Being inclusive is important, especially when it comes to creating a work environment that values and celebrates diversity.

Different perspectives can bring creative and innovative ways of tackling problems and creating new ways of working.

Wherever you are working, all voices should be heard and respected.

Investing in leadership and coaching training for your NHS team

Specialist support for NHS leaders and staff

Navigating leadership in any organisation is challenging. Leadership in the NHS is an ongoing journey and requires a commitment to encouraging collaborative, compassionate, and inclusivity at all levels.

If you’ve found that the points above have resonated with you and you’d like to help yourself and your team to benefit from better collaboration, motivation, team working and wellbeing, then get in touch about my NHS Leadership Transformation Programme.

This coaching, mentoring and training programme is a unique opportunity for NHS leadership teams and is designed to support individuals and teams to thrive and grow as successful and confident leaders.

They'll have access to ongoing support that's specifically geared towards building resilience, enhancing confidence and developing leadership skills. 

​(Read what an NHS Director of Digital & Innovation had to say about the results gained)

"Jackie worked for our company providing both 1-2-1 executive coaching for members of the management team and team building session for cross departmental leaders. Jackie's sessions brought great insight and strengthened team bonds which saw operational benefits. Her coaching has allowed managers to grow internally, develop new skills and become the best version of themselves".

For everyone I know and work with in the NHS, the ultimate goal is to create a healthcare environment where effective and inspiring leadership becomes a driving force for positive change, no matter where you’re working.


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