Foundation trust chairs, chief executives and medical directors are being encouraged to attend an army-style leadership course at Sandhurst to help ride out the recession.

Regulator Monitor has written to foundation trusts to promote the course, which has been adapted for public sector managers from the Royal Military Academy’s officer leadership training programme.

The programme will be based around the academy’s “mission command” approach, which decentralises leadership and encourages use of initiative in complex, high pressure situations.

Monitor said the course could help overcome a “wait to be asked, permission-seeking culture”, the “perception [of] an unwillingness to be ‘brave’ or to speak out” and a “risk averse” culture.

In his letter to trusts, Monitor policy director Robert Harris said: “Assuming a worsening financial scenario for the next three to five years, the main consequence of not tackling leadership capabilities or not including clinicians…[improvement] would be delayed indefinitely or at best be several years slower to implement.”

“It is appreciated that the [Sandhurst] style of leadership might not suit every organisation,” Mr Harris noted.

The day-long course will take place on 22 October.

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