The King's Fund

Developing collective leadership for health care

  • Format: Printed copy
  • Authors: Michael West, Regina Eckert, Katy Steward, Bill Pasmore
  • Date: 21 May 2014

With the NHS facing bigger challenges than ever before, leaders must ensure that cultures within health care organisations sustain high-quality, compassionate and ever-improving care. Key to shaping these cultures is leadership. This paper argues that collective leadership ¬– as opposed to command-and-control structures – provides the optimum basis for caring cultures.

This paper explains the interaction between collective leadership and cultures that value compassionate care, by drawing on wider literature and case studies of good organisational practice. It outlines the main characteristics of a collective leadership strategy and the process for developing this.