Changing social care: an inclusive approach
Leadership for change and improvement: Establish a clear sense of purpose and ideology
- Be clear about where the organisation is now, where it needs to get to and why that is the right direction
- Understand how any proposed change fits with the purpose behind it.
- Plan how to communicate this purpose to the workforce.
…in all cases, the agreed sense of underlying purpose came first and mechanisms that enabled necessary changes…were subsequent(Fauth and Mahdon 2007).
Willowbank is now an organisation that is controlled by people with disabilities and works with and for people with disabilities. Willowbank sees a person with a disability as someone with a ‘solution’, providing they are encouraged, enabled and empowered to articulate what they want and need to help overcome barriers.(Willowbank)
Disability Wales adopted and embedded the social model of disability to become an organisation for disabled people. Its aim was to achieve rights, equality and choice for disabled people and adopting the social model of disability allowed Disability Wales to express the values it aspired to – of empowering disabled people to become equal citizens. A representative of one of its member organisations stated, ‘If you have a non-disabled person standing at the front of a lecture hall trying to offer disability equality training, however well they do it, however good the outcomes apparently are, it maintains the myth that this isn’t something disabled people can do themselves.(Disability Wales)
How we know this?
- Research shows that those in leadership positions need to take responsibility for making sense of the change, including establishing starting points, managing the change journey and communicating the guiding principles. This was the aspect most strongly associated with successful implementation of change or improvement (Higgs and Rowland 2005) and therefore requires particular attention.
- Team leaders and managers are responsible for bridging the gap between the vision at the top and the work at the front line (Tenkasi and Chesmore 2003), and therefore have a key role to play in making sense of the change and communicating plans to the workforce.