Introduction Many academic health centres and universities have implemented leadership development programmes; however, their potential impact in different contexts in healthcare remains unknown. We assessed the impact of an academic leadership development programme on the self-reported leadership activities of faculty leaders in their respective work contexts.
Methods Ten faculty leaders who participated in a 10-month leadership development programme between 2017 and 2020 were interviewed. The realist evaluation approach was used to guide deductive content analysis, allowing concepts related to what works for whom, why and when to emerge from the data.
Results Faculty leaders benefited in different ways depending on the organisational context (eg, culture) in which they reside and their individual contexts (eg, personal aspirations as a leader). Faculty leaders who have minimal mentorship in their leadership role gained an increased sense of community and belongingness with peer leaders and received validation in their personal leadership approach from the programme. Faculty leaders with accessible mentors were more likely than their peers to apply the knowledge they learnt to their work settings. Prolonged engagement among faculty leaders in the 10-month programme fostered continuity of learning and peer support that extended beyond programme completion.
Conclusions This academic leadership programme included participation of faculty leaders in different contexts, resulted in varying impacts on participants’ learning outcomes, leader self-efficacy and application of acquired knowledge. Faculty administrators should look for programmes with a multitude of learning interfaces to extract knowledge, hone leadership skills and build networks.
- leadership assessment
- medical leadership
Data availability statement
Data are available on reasonable request.
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Twitter @ShellyAnneLi, @XC_TongMD, @annekwong, @TChanMD
Presented at Li, S-A, Chen R, Tong XC, Wong AW & Chan TM. Learning to lead: Perspectives from the Faculty of Health Sciences Academic Leadership Program. Norman Education Research Day (virtual conference). (June 2020) Hamilton, ON. Poster session.
Contributors S-AL, RC, CT, AW and TMC listed on this manuscript contributed to the conceptualisation of the study, data collection, analysis, interpretation and drafting and critically reviewing the manuscript. All authors stand by this work and its academic rigour. All authors (and particularly TC) act as guarantors of the paper and take full responsibility for the work and the conduct of the study, had access to the data, and controlled the decision to publish.
Funding Research and Innovation Fund was awarded by the Continuing Health Sciences Education Program, which is now within the Office of Continuing Professional Development, Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University.
Competing interests AW, CT, RC and TMC have COIs as they are employed by McMaster University. AW is the director of ALP. AW, RC and CT have participated in the ALP.
Patient and public involvement statement This study did not directly pertain to patient or public groups, and hence they were not involved in this study.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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