By Dunni Adeleye
When looking for a perfect example of efficient and effective leadership and management in an organisation; we do not need to look any further than the Royal Navy and its ethos. This begs the question, what is the Royal Navy doing and how can we translate that to our practice in the NHS?
The Royal Navy’s core values underpinning leadership include:
Respect for others
How do these values translate to the current leadership and management of the NHS?
First and foremost is COMMITMENT. The first core value of leadership in the royal navy requires not just leaders but ALL members to be prepared to serve whenever and wherever required. I think it can be strongly argued that the majority of staff working in the NHS have this core value embedded in their practice. With increasing demand to the healthcare service and staff shortages, delivering care to our patients in this climate requires a great deal of commitment – both physically and mentally.
I think the core value that strikes me the most is COURAGE. This value in the context of the navy is described as:
“The ability and willingness to do what is right even though it may be an unpopular course of action”
This is something that I think as junior doctors and future leaders in the NHS we need to have as our mantra when hitting roadblocks with various stakeholders whilst trying to implement an improvement.
The rest of the core values seem self-explanatory that they should be key values a leadership should have and uphold. However it has given me food for thought and caused me to reflect on leaders I see in my day to day practice.
Do our leaders uphold these values?
I think it is valid for all of us to appraise our leaders and reflect on these values. Do they show respect for others and have integrity? If the answer is no, then I think we should be pointing them all in the direction of the Royal Navy and their core values.