Building future leaders


The health and care service in the UK is facing unprecedentedly challenging times, under constant pressure to do more with less with dwindling resources, and all the while under the microscope of intense political and media scrutiny. Health and care leaders are not immune to these pressures, and in such a climate, it should perhaps come as no surprise that the NHS is facing a much-discussed ‘leadership crisis’,

Key findings of the report:

  • Aspiration to top-level positions remains high among heath and care management and leadership trainees. Aspiration is highest among those on formal NHS leadership pathways, and female and BAME managers are just as or more likely to aspire to senior positions than their white male counterparts.
  • A desire to implement change is the biggest motivation for the overwhelming majority of aspiring health and care leaders. However, a significant minority do not feel they will actually be empowered to do so.
  • The biggest deterrent factor for those who do not aspire to top-level positions, and the greatest barrier perceived by those who do, is the unrealistic demands placed on health and care service delivery with currently available resources.
  • High tur nover and vacancy rates for senior positions are not in themselves significant deterrent factors for future health and care leaders.
  • Few trainee managers see a clear career pathway to the top level. This is a particular area of concern for experienced managers who have a great deal to offer, but did not get onto formal NHS leadership pathways on the ground floor.
  • Half of trainee managers say health and care leadership does not reflect the diversity of the workforce, and only 15% believe it is as easy for BAME managers to reach senior positions as it is for their white counterparts.
  • Aspiring health and care leaders believe they need to develop greater political skills in order to provide effective leadership in the current climate, but are lacking in confidence that they will receive the necessary training in this area.

Download full report here: Building future leaders