Public Administrative Environments
Public Leadership in a Health Environment
The leadership environment in the public sector is complex and involves several parties. This presents the public leader with new challenges from time to time. A good public leader with the skills and personal drive required of a public leader can easily navigate through leadership, while providing solutions to the problems. These challenges arise from different avenues including the top leadership positions in the public sector, stakeholders, the community, clients and employees. A public leader entrusted with the responsibility of solving these problems should use their skills and traits to amend the problems and to ensure that each of the parties involved are satisfied. The problem solving skill is one that is vital and that every public leader should possess.
The Director of Public Health needs to address the complaints filed against the department administrators by citizens, the department and stakeholders. These complaints include unprofessional leadership, unethical practices, insufficient customer and patient care, poor fire and emergency response time and inability to implement change and resolve conflict within and among subordinates and staff. These complaints involve the agencies of the department of health including Social Services, Fire and Emergency Department and Human Services. The director of public health needs to handle each agency at a time for the strategy used to tackle these problems to succeed. The director can bring change by using various leadership theories and styles.
Leadership in the health environment is crucial, since the services offered in this sector affect citizens directly. The director of public health and related agencies can use the transformational leadership theory to address the issues at hand. This public leader should analyze all the complaints each at a time, come up with a vision to bring change in the department. The leader can then set goals and objectives aimed at achieving the vision put forward. There is need to plan how to achieve the goals and objectives, lay down strategies and implement their leadership skills and traits to share the vision and mobilize their followers in order to achieve this change in the department.
The transformational leadership theory would be the most efficient leadership theory in ensuring change in this organization in order to ensure satisfaction of various parties including citizens, the department and stakeholders. This theory would enable the leader to bring change and improve the performance of the department. Using this theory of leadership, the director of Public health would come up with a vision and lay down goals and objectives necessary to attain the vision. The leader would then use their leadership skills including effective communication, ability to motivate others, problem solving. This way, the leader can share their vision with department administrators, and communicate the strategies laid down to achieve set goals and objectives to address the complaints brought forward. The leader should also motivate these individuals in order to achieve better quality work and fewer complaints. This would help bring change in the public health department, improve satisfaction among citizens and stakeholders.
Through this leadership theory, the director of public health, through involvement of top management can put down new or reinforce existing rules on professionalism, a code of conduct to govern ethics and a system for monitoring satisfaction of community members on services provided by the department. Rules governing service delivery and ways to monitor organize frequent training of the department administrators in order to improve their professionalism and overall performance in the department. This would change their methods of administration and improve service delivery to the public.
The director of public health can use various leadership styles to address the complaints raised against department administrators. The democratic style of leadership and the consultative style of leadership would be the best approaches of leadership to solve these issues. The democratic style of leadership would enable the director of public health to call a meeting with the department administrators and bring the complaints raised to table. This would enable dialogue with the administrators to find out the exact problems, and the cause for the complaints raised by various parties. This would provide way forward and possible solutions for the problems at hand. Involvement of department administrators is problem solving motivates them and will probably hasten the achievement of change and better public service delivery.
The consultative style of leadership would enable the director of public health to share the complaints put forward with the department administrators, and take their views on possible methods of problem solution. The final decision on ways to address the complaints remains with the director of public health and the top management. This leadership style enables the department administrators to recognize the issues at hand, work with the final decision made without opposition, and take personal responsibility and initiative to make amends in their position of duty. This would promote quality public service delivery in the department in the future.
Public Leadership in an Educational Environment
Educational environments are an integral part of an economy. Public leadership in this sector is susceptible to challenges from various avenues, and therefore needs keenness and flexibility. The challenges that the school board faces are addressable through the application of various leadership theories and styles. The contingency theory of leadership describes alteration of the style of leadership used based on the situation, people, the task, and other variables in the public sector and its environment. The school board can apply this theory in addressing the issues at hand.
Using the contingency theory of leadership, the school board can adjust their style of leadership to address the issues at hand. By using this theory of leadership, the school board can come up with new strategies to approach the directors of government departments in an attempt to make them meet federal mandates regarding the formation of new policy issues affecting the leadership of various departments. Through this leadership theory, school board directors can mobilize the directors of government departments to support the leadership of secondary schools through provision of data from the department of juvenile relations to increase retention and graduation rates in these schools.
The school board can propose to alter their terms of agreement for their collaboration with these departments. They can call a meeting with these directors to discuss the importance of the various tasks in meeting various objectives and a vision laid down by the school board. Consultation with the top management in these departments, and the overall public leadership of the state would be important to enable intervention from these sectors. They can also propose for the review of the memoranda of understanding with the departments concerned. Through a review of the memoranda, the school board can make proposals regarding the terms of the collaboration and the roles of directors in these departments.
The school board can utilize the democratic style of leadership to achieve their goals and objectives in their collaboration with the various government departments. Through this style of leadership, the school board would share their ideas and proposed policies with the directors of various relevant department directors before decision-making. This way, the directors give their views on the proposals, and offer their support in the achievement of goals and objectives set by the school board. Through this style of leadership, the department directors would be able to present their views on the proposed policies and whether they are attainable, where their departments are concerned. The involvement of directors of these government departments would guarantee support from these departments, and would motivate the department directors through giving them a feeling of relevance and acceptance in their collaboration with the school. This would also create a good working relationship between the department directors and the school board, and reduce opposition from these directors.
The consultative style of leadership would also be a good leadership style for use by the school board when working with the various government departments and their directors. Through this leadership style, the school board would be able to consult with relevant government departments before making decisions and policies. The school board, through this leadership style, would share their views on various proposed ideas with the relevant department directors before making the final decision in various matters. This way, the school board would know which of the proposals are attainable, and how well the government department is able to provide support towards their achievement. This way, the department directors would be able to provide full support to the school board in various matters, since they are involved in the decision making process. The school board is therefore able to achieve its goals and objectives as set with minimal hassle and opposition from the relevant government department and its leadership.
Public Leadership in Government Operations
The city manager is the Chief administrative officer in the city. They bear the responsibility to ensure that operations in the government departments of their city run efficiently. The city manager provides overall leadership for the various government departments within their jurisdiction by planning, overseeing, administering, directing and evaluating the activities of these departments through department directors. This individual ensures that services offered to the public from the government departments are of good quality, that citizens are satisfied, and that there are minimal complaints put forward by citizens, staff in these departments, advocacy groups and stakeholders. The directors of the various government departments within the city manager’s jurisdiction report to them.
The leadership from the department of public health, the school board and other government departments affects the leadership of the City Manager and their ability to carry out government operations. This is because the city manager is directly in charge of the directors of these departments and is therefore responsible for any actions taken by these directors. Reports of poor public service in various departments are likely to reach the city manager. When citizens, staff and other stakeholders, present complaints to the city manager, the city manager has to intervene through establishing contact with the director of the relevant department. The city manager then gives direction on the addressing of these complaints. They also determine the firing of leaders in this department, and the appointment of other leaders, based on their performance assessed through feedback from the public.
The city manager attends council meetings where they represent the various departments. These meetings culminate in the making of decisions and policies that affect government departments directly. The ability of department directors to implement these decisions and policies, affects the effectiveness of the leadership offered by the city manager, and the efficiency of government operations in that city. The department directors also act as a link between the city manager and the citizen at the grassroots level. The quality of services offered to the public is echoed by the response given by the citizen and prompts the city manager to act accordingly based on this response.
Improving Public Leadership Styles
Weaknesses in a public leadership style utilized by a public leader to deliver leadership can affect the quality of leadership and the outcomes of the public sector under their jurisdiction. To improve the outcomes of their leadership, the public leader should come up with various strategies to overcome the weaknesses. Some of these weaknesses include lack of the drive to mobilize followers to achieve set goals and objectives, poor emotional balance and control, poor social and interpersonal skills, inability to maintain standards of performance, poor communication skills, inability to make decisions, the unwillingness to take risks and lack of commitment to public leadership.
The public leader must first assess their leadership to determine their strengths and weaknesses. This may be through self-evaluation, by revisiting the vision for leadership and the goals and objectives put in place to achieve this vision. The leader can then analyze their achievements and failures, and strategize accordingly. It is important for the public leader to focus on their weaknesses in order to identify the barriers to success in their previous project and act accordingly. This leader can re visit their goals and objectives and determine those that were not met and why. The public leader can then identify the cause of this and adjust their leadership style accordingly.
Another strategy that is applicable by the public leader to overcome weaknesses in their style of leadership is through seeking feedback from the staff and the public under their leadership. This way, the public leader can determine the weaknesses in their leadership style without bias. A retrospective assessment of work previously done is important, where staff and the public are anonymous to increase the chances that feedback will be free of bias and to allay fear of victimization. The staff and the public may make suggestions aimed at improving the leadership in the department. The public leader should take the feedback seriously and act accordingly. From the feedback and suggestions, the public leader can adjust their leadership style to overcome the barriers to successful leadership. The leader can also blend various leadership styles in order to achieve the desired outcome. Quality public service, minimal complaints from the public, staff and stakeholders, all translate to quality public leadership.
In conclusion, it is evident that leadership in the public sector presents with it a myriad of challenges, which need overcoming ensure efficiency. It is also apparent that leadership in the public sector is complex and presents with the need to collaborate and work with other departments in the public sector. Various leadership theories and styles are applicable to foster and maintain relations between various departments, which promote the achievement of set goals and objectives. Weaknesses in public leadership styles are addressable through identification by assessment of the successes and failures of previous tasks and projects, and seeking of feedback from staff and the public.
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