Managing patient care requires a variety of leadership, where you take your patient from the starting point to their destination of restored health and wellness. This can require navigation of coordinated care, the medico-legal system, the private insurance system and many other types of items secondary to the actual care delivered. However, showing leadership in the context of a larger practice or a multi-disciplinary practice is a different matter. These ideas revolve around the notion of Emotional Intelligence, a phrase attributed to Peter Salovey and John Mayer. This is generally defined by them as “a form of social intelligence that involves the ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and action.” Here are some specific ways you can develop this within your own organization.
This boils down to “know thyself.” What are your strengths and weaknesses? How would your co-workers and your reports describe you? What is your dominant personality type and style? How do you land on other people in general?
Much of being an effective leader involves self-discipline and making sure that your responses to stressful situations are solution rather than blame oriented, and do not cause further divisions and stress within the organization. What are your strategies and methods of handling ambiguity, risk, cross-purposes, competing commitments, and other disruptive factors in running a practice? How variable are your moods and presentation to your staff and peers?
In this context, the motivation we are looking for is for improvement and excellence achievement as part of the main thrust of the organization. This is essentially a self-fulfilling activity, not done for specific personal or financial gain.
This is the ability to fully understand another person’s emotional characteristics and present condition without fully inhabiting it. (That is closer to the concept of sympathy.) Active, engaged listening is typically the first step in increasing this quotient.
This is a broad and complex area, and also one of increasing importance in the workplace in general. Business and professional schools classify this as “soft skills,” which can be as important or more important than the technical skills involved in the basic job. The overall aim is to develop rapport and shared values and ideas to move a process or organization forward to the desired/stated end result.
It’s usually easy to spot the deficits present in other people pertaining to any of these areas, because the first area (self-awareness) is poorly developed or absent. The question is, how well can you spot these in yourself?