Week 1


  • Introduction to Leadership

    Healthcare administrators are tasked not only with the managerial and administrative activities of a department or organization, but with the leadership and development often associated with improving individual and organizational outcomes. When we think of leaders, usually the first thing that comes to mind is certain traits for what we think make an effective leader. Early research into leadership focused on traits and what leaders “looked like.” As you’ll see in this week's discussion and assignments, leadership traits don’t always correlate to effective leadership. You can decide for yourself.

    Topics this Week

    • Posting to the Discussion Board
    • Discussion Board: Introductions (5 points)
    • Readings and Videos
    • Self-Assessment: The Big 5 Personality Test
    • 1.1 Discussion: Your Definition of Leadership and Your Leadership Style (10 points)
    • 1.2 Assessment: Leadership Traits (50 points)
    • 1.3 Check-in With Professor: Blackboard Activities (10 points)
    two women conversing conversing
  • Posting Assignments

    discussion icon

    This icon indicates that you'll be using the Discussion Board. The Discussion Board is the heart of our interactive courses. Each week, in the Discussion Board, you will discuss important issues that are relevant to the course. 

    assessment iconThis icon indicates that you'll be posting a written assessment. Your progress towards program fullfillment will be assesed here (hence the name!). These prompts form the basis of your professional work in this program, and help you to apply what you learn here.

    Directions for Discussions

    1. Click the "Start Assignment" button or the title of the assignment itself.
      • Alternatively, you can select from a list of all discussions within the course by navigating to "Discussion Board" in the left-hand navigation. 
    2. Click on “Create Thread”.
    3. In the box (called a "text box") type in the required information.
      • If you wish to spell check your entry, click on the abc icon
    4. Scroll down and click on “Submit”.
    Note: A preferred method is to complete your work in Word, check for spelling/grammar errors, and copy/paste the information into the text box. (This also saves your work.  In case of power failure, submit failure, etc., you have a copy of your work.)

    Directions for Replying

    1. Read the posting(s).
    2. Click on “reply” at the end of the posting.
    3. In the Text Box that appears, make your reply.
    4. Hit the “Submit” button.

    Directions for Assessments

    1. Click the "Start Assignment" button or the title of the assignment itself.
    2. Under "Assignment Submission", you have the choice of either writing a text submission in a text box, or attaching a Word (or Excel, PDF, etc...) document. If attaching a document:
      • You may drag-and-drop your document within the dotted outline, or search for the document on your computer using the "Browse My Computer" button.
    3. Scroll down and click on "Submit".
  • Let's begin the course with some introductions. Please post a brief message introducing yourself. Include a short biography. Include where you work now and relevant positions you have held in the past. You can also explain your reasons for taking the course, your strategies for success (both in work and in academics), what you hope to learn, and any concerns you have that you would like to share with the class. You may include as much or as little detail as you wish. 

    You must post to this forum before the rest of the course will become available to you.

    Submission Instructions

    Complete the assignment by clicking on the title above, or the button below, and then "Create Thread."

    Start Assignment

  • Content in Context

    boats with red leaderIn this week, the readings and videos are focused on the qualities and characteristics of effective leaders. Personality characteristics are among those that are most programmed by the time people reach adulthood. The Myers-Briggs type indicator (MBTI) is purported to be an assessment that describes individual personalities. Some have theorized that these preferences may predict the ability of a leader to be a transformational leader. Transformational leaders are those leaders who have the ability to improve followers' motivation and morality. Some studies have shown that organizations with transformational leaders tend to outperform companies with transactional leaders on several measures, including financial performance. It turns out that there is strong support for the hypothesis that transformational leadership leads to better organizational outcomes. If there were a link between MBTI and transformational leadership ability, that could mean certain personality types are more likely to be successful transformational leaders than others. However, the first reading this phase indicates that there is not a strong link between MBTI and transformational leadership. A key use for the MBTI is as an indicator of behavior preferences. However, those preferences are not irresistible, and leaders can choose to behave in certain ways that are either supportive of, or detrimental to, organizational outcomes (Brown & Reilly, 2008).

    It is logical to ask if we can know what behaviors are most likely to lead to success, particularly in healthcare organizations. There has been a lot of work done on identifying leadership competencies that are based on evidence and focused on leadership behaviors that lead to better organizational performance in the healthcare industry. The second reading in this week describes the Healthcare Leadership Competency Model (Calhoun et al., 2008).

    Possessing a leadership style that is behaviorally and emotionally intelligent is especially important in today's changing healthcare environment. Leaders who are self-aware and socially aware recognize the effect their behaviors have on others, but they also understand the behavioral attributes of the people they lead. Most individuals warm up to change slowly, but the pace of Legislation and societal expectations put pressure on organizations to change more quickly than perhaps they would like to. Leaders who are behaviorally and emotionally intelligent will take into account their own behavioral and emotional characteristics, as well as those of the followers, and be more successful at leading their organizations through change (Delmatoff & Lazarus, 2014).

    Keys to providing effective leadership are:

    1. Providing a compelling vision,
    2. Setting and communicating clear goals, and
    3. Developing an organizational climate that promotes mutual trust, motivated individuals, good teamwork, and diversity.

    Leaders have the responsibility to ensure that all of these key elements are present in their organizations. The most important tools to get organizations to that level are performance evaluations and leadership development (Garman, Butler, & Brinkmeyer, 2006).

    What enables leaders to be able to ensure these aspects of organizational life are present in their organizations? The answer, at least in part, is that successful leaders tend to possess personality characteristics that enable them to have the drive to push their organizations to greater heights and the ability to work with others to achieve organizational needs. The last three readings for this week focus on the traits that are likely to be associated with the most successful leaders (Kirkpatrick & Locke, 1991;  Kornor & Nordvik 2004; Zaccaro, 2007). 


    We should never confuse charisma with leadership - they're very, very different ideas.

    Jim Collins

    Many people believe that charisma is the most important leadership trait. However, it is not. Leadership has much less to do with personality than people may think. In the video "From Good to Great: What Defines a Level V Leader?," Jim Collins argues that the most important trait of an effective leader is a special kind of humility in which leaders have a burning desire not to promote themselves, but to promote an idea or set of values which they hold dear (Collins, 2009).

    Many different studies have identified different traits that tend to be associated with effective leadership. Some of these traits are state-like, meaning that they can be developed and improved upon through training, education, experience, or personal self-development. The video, "About Leadership: The Effects of Character Traits on Leadership," presents the seven leader character traits that appear most often in the literature on leadership. Six of these traits can be developed and nurtured. The seventh follows naturally from the six (The Blue Water Partnership, 2011).

    Click Below!

    Click below to access the Readings and Videos for this week

    Week 1 Readings and Videos

    Self-Assessment: The Big 5 Personality Test

    This is a resource for your own personal use. The Big 5 is probably the most valid assessment of individual personality traits available today.

    Click Here

  • In your own words, what is your definition of leadership? Based on your own experience, how would you characterize/categorize your leadership style?

    Submission Instructions

    Complete the assignment by clicking on the Discussion title above or the button below and then "Create Thread." Next, review at least three peers' work. If possible, select posts for which there are not yet any replies. 

    View the Discussion rubric by clicking the button below.

    MHA Discussion RubricStart Assignment

  • What leadership traits are important for healthcare leaders to possess? Why? Justify your response. More importantly, critique your own view of leadership traits. Is it accurate to claim that if a healthcare leader possesses the traits you’ve identified, he or she will be an effective leader?

    HINT: If you claim that having certain traits will result in more effective leadership, you need to support your opinion using solid academic research studies. For example, if you have good communication traits, will this mean that you’ll be a more effective leader? Be careful in your critique!

    Submission Instructions

    Use appropriate documentation and research to support your analysis. See the information below for more details

    Maximum 5 pages – not including title page, references or appendices.

    APA format is required. Minimum of 2 academic and/or professional references.

    The rubric for this assessment will be used to provide feedback and grade your work. Review the rubric by clicking the link below and use it to guide your work.

    MHA Assignment RubricStart Assignment

    Complete the assignment by clicking on the assignment title or the button above.

    A Research and References Review

    You should be using sound, academic research for your assignments, including peer-reviewed research from appropriate journals. Peer-reviewed or refereed journals use a process of peer reviewing prior to publishing any work or article. Through peer reviewing, experts in the respective journal’s field or area of specialty assess the draft and provide the author with feedback. Only articles that have passed through this process are published in the journal, resulting in sound practice and scholarship in the field of study.

    Not all scholarly journals go through a peer review process, but it’s generally considered that a peer-reviewed journal is also a scholarly journal. Scholarly journals include articles written by experts in a particular field and focus on pertinent research and academic study. Research studies in scholarly journals will include an abstract; introduction or purpose; description of the sample or subjects included in the study; the methodology used to analyze the sample; results or findings of the study; discussion and finally, the conclusion.

    DO NOT confuse a peer-reviewed or scholarly journal article with a white paper, magazine article or professional journal article. DO NOT use wikis or blogs. If you don’t see the elements underlined above, it’s probably not an academic research article. Professional journal and magazine articles are useful, especially when discussing a specific technology or industry. However, they usually do not provide a scientific or experimental design approach to research.

  • As graduate students, you are expected to know how to effectively use Blackboard, PowerPoint, Excel, MS Word and other programs in order to complete assignments and to work effectively and efficiently in a healthcare organization.

    Please use this Discussion Board post to confirm that you have accessed this website and that you are familiar with the above-mentioned tutorials.

    For information on how to access various functions of Blackboard, PowerPoint 101, scholarly writing and other great tips, visit Blackboard Learn's Student page.

    Blackboard Learn

    Submission Instructions

    Complete the assignment by clicking on the title above, or the button below, and then "Create Thread."

    This is just a check-in. Therefore, there is no rubric associated with this assignment.

    Start Assignment

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