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ABC of Clinical Leadership

ISBN: 978-1-4443-4083-9
88 pages
April 2011, BMJ Books
ABC of Clinical Leadership (1444340832) cover image


This new title in the ABC series is written by clinical educators involved in running leadership programmes for doctors and other healthcare professionals, and defines the scope of clinical leadership, emphasising its importance in the clinical context. It develops and explores the key principles of leadership and management, and outlines the main leadership theories that have influenced healthcare practice.

Through the use of short illustrative case studies, the book considers the challenges and skills in leading multi-disciplinary health care teams as well as the key factors involved in the leadership and management of change both at an individual and organisational level. It explains the running of departments, units and practices and considers the healthcare system as part of wider social systems and structures.

The ABC of Clinical Leadership is written with reference to the Medical Leadership Competency Framework - co-developed by the NHS and all UK Medical Royal Colleges - and considers a systematic approach to leading clinical services, strategic planning, and the management of people and resources. It also covers educational leadership, collaborative working and the importance of leading ethically and with integrity. The book concludes by asking the all important question - does leadership development make a difference?

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Table of Contents



1 The Importance of Clinical Leadership (Sarah Jonas, Layla McCay and Sir Bruce Keogh).

2 Leadership and Management (Andrew Long).

3 Leadership Theories and Concepts (Tim Swanwick).

4 Leading Groups and Teams (Lynn Markiewicz and Michael West).

5 Leading and Managing Change (Valerie Iles).

6 Leading Organisations (Stuart Anderson).

7 Leading in Complex Environments (David Kernick).

8 Leading and Improving Clinical Services (Fiona Moss).

9 Educational Leadership (Judy McKimm and Tim Swanwick).

10 Leading for Collaboration and Partnership Working (Judy McKimm).

11 Understanding Yourself as Leader (Jennifer King).

12 Leading in a Culturally Diverse Health Service (Tim Swanwick and Judy McKimm).

13 Gender and Leadership (Beverly Alimo-Metcalfe and Myfanwy Franks).

14 Leading Ethically and with Integrity (Deborah Bowman).

15 Developing Leadership at All Levels (Judy Butler).


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Author Information

Dr Tim Swanwick MA FRCGP MA(Ed) is a Director of Postgraduate General Practice Education and Faculty Development lead in the London Deanery. Tim is the editor of Understanding Medical Education and the author and editor of a number of other publications. In addition to his work in the London Deanery and an ongoing clinical commitment, Tim is a visiting Fellow at the Institute of Education, Honorary Senior Lecturer at Imperial College and a visiting lecturer at both the Universities of Westminster and Bedfordshire.

Judy McKimm MBA MA (Ed) BA (Hons) Cert Ed FHEA is currently working at Unitec, New Zealand. Judy has managed high profile national educational and leadership initiatives in the UK and has worked in many countries on health reform, health management and educational development projects. She is author of a number of publications on education and educational leadership. Judy is a visiting Professor at the University of Bedfordshire and visiting tutor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine; Swansea Medical School and Leicester Medical School.
Both the editors are actively involved in running leadership programmes for doctors and other senior healthcare workers.

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"The book does represent good value for money and is an accessible way of quickly getting to grips with leadership/management theory. It would be useful to any occupational physicians who wish to better understand the organizations they work with or who aspire to a leadership role." (Occupational Medicine, 11 December 2011)

"For clinicians new to leadership and management and experienced leaders, health service managers, and support staff, Swanwick and McKimm (medical education and healthcare education and leadership, U. of Bedfordshire, UK) assemble 15 chapters by clinical educators involved in running leadership programs for doctors and other healthcare professionals, who define the scope of clinical leadership and emphasize its importance in the clinical context." (Reference and Research Book News, 1 April 2011)


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