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Leadership quality: a factor important for social capital in healthcare organizations

Journal article
Authors Marcus Strömgren
Andrea Eriksson
Linda Ahlstrom
David Kristofer Bergman
Lotta Dellve
Published in Journal of Health, Organisation and Management
Volume 31
Issue 2
Pages 175-191
ISSN 1477-7266
Publication year 2017
Published at Department of Sociology and Work Science
Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Pages 175-191
Language en
Links https://doi.org/10.1108/JHOM-12-201...
Keywords Cohort, Healthcare, Leadership, Leadership quality, Social capital
Subject categories Other Medical Sciences, Work Sciences, Environmental Health and Occupational Health

Abstract

© 2017, © Emerald Publishing Limited. Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relation between leadership and social capital and what qualities of leadership are important for social capital among employees in hospital settings over time. Design/methodology/approach: A cohort of employees in hospitals answered a questionnaire at three occasions. Five small (approx. 100-bed) or mid-sized (approx. 500-bed) hospitals were included. The response rate was 54 percent at baseline (n=865), 59 percent at one-year follow-up (n=908) and 67 percent at two-year follow-up (n=632). Findings: Repeated measures over time showed differences between groups in levels of social capital with respect to levels of leadership quality. Relation-oriented leadership had the strongest association with social capital. There was evidence that leadership was associated with social capital over time and that different kinds of leadership qualities we re associated with social capital. Research limitations/implications: This study conducted and analyzed quantitative data, and therefore, there is no knowledge of managers’ or employees’ own perceptions in this study. However, it would be interesting to compare managers’ decreased and increased leadership quality and how such differences affect social capital over time. Practical implications: The findings feature the possibility for healthcare leaders to build high quality leadership as an important resource for social capital, by using different leadership orientations under different circumstances. Originality/value: The paper showed that leadership was an important factor for building social capital and that different leadership qualities have different importance with respect to certain circumstances.

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