Editors’ introduction Leadership is a core component of medical professionalism. The leadership here is not necessarily related to being a clinical leader, but to providing a role which allows the clinician to take an overview of the service, thereby planning service delivery and service development. This role focuses on horizon scanning and thinking ahead to deal with potential threats and looming changes. Leadership in multidisciplinary teams is one example of leadership, but the role of the psychiatrist in taking the lead on developing and delivering public mental health agendas is equally distinct and valid. Herrman et al. start from this very point and argue that there must be a distinction between these roles and the leadership role related to policy-making. Contemporary ideas of leadership in mental health are related to international methods of healthcare and collaborative practice. The latter includes patient (consumer) focus, mutual respect, shared understanding, clarification of functions and roles, along with increased efficiency and effectiveness. There has to be a move away from charismatic leadership to a more distributed model of leadership. Links with local stakeholders, communication abilities and the aptitude to empower others are all important leadership skills. Leaders can not only support professionalism within the practice context, they can also provide joint working. The role of the leader in clinical teams is collaborative. Training individuals in such skills, along with preparing them for a broader public mental health agenda, is an investment worth making.
|Title of host publication||Professionalism in Mental Healthcare|
|Subtitle of host publication||Experts, Expertise and Expectations|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2010|