Get past the them and us attitude, say Alexander Young and Jonathan Bloor
The relationship between management and clinicians is often seen as one of division and incertitude. This tension has been compounded in recent years by governmental targets and narrowing budgets, so it is highly appropriate that the authors of Clinical Leadership: bridging the divide chose that subtitle.
The book is edited by junior doctors who have repudiated this divide in clinical leadership by taking business management degrees and showing a passion for development as leaders. This stemmed from the 2008 Prepare to Lead scheme in which junior doctors in London were matched to senior NHS leaders. The authors draw on experiences from the scheme.
The authors aim to instil a new order of leadership into the reader. The book embraces a leadership by all approach and is accessible to all healthcare professionals and policy makers.
After defining leadership in the clinical setting the book gives an overview of the history of healthcare management including political and economical influences. It then looks at attributes required for effective clinical leadership and offers practical tips on how effective leadership can be implemented and how to overcome obstacles.
There are many good things about this book, not least its passion for leadership, which shines through on every page. The authors strike the right balance between inspiring leadership and practical advice while succinctly concluding that it is the patient who ultimately benefits from effective clinical leadership.
Alexander Young is a foundation doctor at Taunton and Somerset Foundation Trust and Jonathan Bloor is the director of DocCom and a clinical fellow at University Hospitals Bristol Foundation Trust.