How to demonstrate leadership skills within your career
Upon hearing the word "leader," you might automatically think of someone who manages a large team, or someone at the top who calls all the shots.
Although the term can have different meanings for different people, it's interesting to see that the Chartered Institute of Professional Development (CIPD) defines it as "the capacity to influence people, by means of personal attributes and/or behaviours, to achieve a common goal."
Reviews and research have shown the importance of leadership within healthcare, linking it to patient mortality, the quality of patient care and patient satisfaction, as well as better staff wellbeing and morale.
Following the increasing recognition that all employees need to be leaders at some level, healthcare organisations are now shifting a relentless focus onto improving and investing in strong and effective leadership within the services they provide.
For this reason you may notice that leadership will be quite a prominent topic during recruitment processes, with employers asking you to demonstrate or describe your leadership skills within your CV, job application, assessments and/or interview. Alternatively you may be applying for a new post where leadership will play an important part. In this case you may be asked not only which leadership skills you already possess, but about your leadership vision or leadership ethos.
All employees can be leaders, from directors, to middle managers, from first-line supervisors to front-line staff.
You could be a leader for example by raising concerns about staffing levels, by acting as a role model, or by taking forward an idea about how to improve patient care.