Adaptive leadership is a leadership concept that implies effectively responding to change that impacts the industry that a leader works in to ensure sustainability and development. The adaptation in regards to the requirements of the environment implies anticipating the changes and preparing the followers to ensure that they can respond to the challenge. In the context of healthcare, adaptive leadership is especially important when implementing new technological solutions because no clear guideline explaining the application of innovation exists, while the current healthcare environment requires significant organizational changes.
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Firstly, it is necessary to define adaptive leadership and establish its importance for the domain of healthcare management. According to Govindarajan (2016), adaptive leadership allows people to anticipate change and direct the efforts to make sure that the change affects their organizations in ways they plan. The author argues that despite the implications that the name of his leadership style has, such leaders have to predict that the change will happen and prepare for it beforehand.
Northouse (2015) argues that the leader’s primary responsibility is to influence the work of followers considering the conditions that they are in, to ensure that the adaptation is successful. Hence, mobilizing employees, motivating, organizing, orienting them, and ensuring that they pay attention to the essential aspects is essential.
Secondly, it is vital to establish the role of adaptive leadership in the domain of healthcare. Unarguably, the contemporary healthcare environment is complex and requires managers that can lead their establishments considering the balance between efficiency, profit, and patient health, which are the main challenge that hospitals and medical centers encounter (Klecun, 2016). In healthcare, leadership is essential to promote the quality and improvement of the existing practices for the benefit of the patients. Through adaptive style, healthcare leaders can provide support to their employees by ensuring that they are prepared for organizational changes (Northouse, 2015).In addition, adaptive leadership allows one to promote the use of technology in healthcare.
Finally, the use of adaptive leadership in the context of new technology should be determined. Change and adoption of innovation in healthcare are inevitable, and it is necessary to ensure that best practices of treatment are used (Klecun, 2016). Moreover, it allows healthcare leaders to address issues that arise, for example, the shortage of qualified personnel and increasing costs that impact affordability. Through the use of technology, healthcare entities were able to introduce eHealth systems, telehealth, and electronic health records, all of which make the day-to-day tasks of healthcare professionals easier and ensure that patients can access healthcare professionals.
According to Northouse (2015), adaptive leadership practices are the most effective when addressing technical issues or problems that have no defined solution. This problem is especially relevant since using technology is a relatively new approach, and only some legislations, for example, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), exist that regulate this element of healthcare.
However, many areas, such as the use of artificial intelligence, are new and do not have a clearly defined guideline for use and implementation, requiring the adaptive leadership style that can help prepare healthcare professionals for the adoption of new practices. Hence, adaptive leadership can be used to assess information regarding the current issues that impact the healthcare industry and prepare a strategic plan to address the changes. Technology and its advancement should be the main focus of modern healthcare leaders because its application can significantly improve the provision of services, and the best strategy to implement innovation is through adaptive leadership.
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Govindarajan, V. (2016). Adaptive leadership 101. Leader to Leader, 2016(81), 42–46. Web.
Klecun, E. (2016). Transforming healthcare: Policy discourses of IT and patient-centred care. European Journal of Information Systems, 25(1), 64-76. Web.
Northouse, P. G. (2015). Leadership: Theory and practice (7th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.