Skip to main content

Prepare for Leadership Roles in Healthcare

As the healthcare industry continues to evolve and change, companies are recognizing they need leaders skilled at navigating the challenges. One way for professionals to gain management expertise with a healthcare focus is by earning an MBA with a Concentration in Healthcare Management online from UT Tyler.

Understanding the Leadership Gap in the Healthcare Industry

A 2016 study by the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) analyzed nearly 35,000 leadership effectiveness evaluations taken between 2000 and 2009 in the healthcare industry.

While the ability to lead employees was deemed the most important characteristic for success in the healthcare industry, the study, nevertheless, found that leaders underperformed in this area in relation to other leadership competencies evaluated. Identifying this leadership gap — defined in the study as the disparities between leadership priorities and current skill sets — is essential to creating successful leadership development initiatives.

The study led to several key recommendations for closing the gap:

  1. Improve the ability of healthcare workers to lead employees and work in teams thus creating an environment conducive to collaboration.
  2. Create strategies to provide current and future leaders access to broad, cross-organizational experiences and learning.
  3. Capitalize on the strengths of current healthcare leaders including the ability to adapt to change and meet business objectives.

Organizational and Industry Leadership Gaps

While the CCL study focused primarily on evaluating individuals working in healthcare, another survey in 2014 by the National Center for Healthcare Leadership also identified gaps in how healthcare organizations have attempted to address these internal leadership deficiencies. The survey identified 11 different dimensions representing the interdependent components of a complete leadership development system which were then weighted as a percentage of a total score.

The median score for the 103 hospitals and healthcare organizations that participated in the survey was just 23.1 out of a possible 100 indicating that most healthcare organizations have a lot of room for improvement when it comes to leadership development. This was most evident in the heaviest weighted dimension — Strategically Aligning Leadership Development — which accounted for 20 percent of the final score. For a leadership development program to be successful, it clearly has to align with the strategic goals of the organization, and should, therefore, be driven by inputs from senior leaders. The survey revealed, however, that many organizations attempt to implement leadership development from the middle — almost exclusively through human resources initiatives or internal training departments or even by outsourcing to external training providers.

This approach inevitably means that, despite their good intentions, leadership development programs often fail to adequately address the gaps that exist on an individual basis, and ultimately, the resources devoted to these programs fail to address an organization’s long-term development needs.

A Curriculum Focused on Real-World Applications

These leadership gaps mean that healthcare organizations are often forced to appoint individuals to executive leadership positions who might be ill-prepared for those roles, according to the HealthcareSource Blog. UT Tyler’s MBA with a Concentration in Healthcare Management features a strong core curriculum with courses designed to help you succeed in these real-world situations. “Strategic Leadership Processes” is a course that specifically deals with the leadership gap issues in the healthcare industry by focusing on leadership and development issues from the perspective of top management. The “Decision Making in Operations Management” course provides an analysis of operations management functions from a manager’s perspective and examines quantitative techniques related to decision-making. “Organizational Behavior and Strategic Human Resource Management,” meanwhile, focuses on the role of HR managers and practices with an eye on developing competitive advantages for the organization.

Additionally, the program provides a specific concentration in healthcare-specific areas such as “Special Topics in Healthcare Management” and “Healthcare Marketing in Contemporary Society” along with an “Introduction to the American Healthcare System” to help individuals working in the industry develop the necessary skill sets for a career in healthcare management.

Becoming Part of the Solution

While healthcare organizations are likely to continue moving toward evidence-based leadership development programs in the future, the leadership gaps that exist in the industry aren’t likely to be solved by internal development initiatives alone.

UT Tyler’s online program for an MBA with a Concentration in Healthcare Management can equip you with the tools for career advancement that also signal to employers your abilities as a leader who will help close those gaps.

Learn more about the UT Tyler online MBA with a Concentration in Healthcare Management program.


Center for Creative Leadership: Addressing the Leadership Gap in Healthcare: What’s Needed When It Comes to Leader Talent?

National Center for Healthcare Leadership: Leadership Development in Healthcare Systems: Toward an Evidence-Based Approach

HealthcareSource Blog: Leadership Development in Healthcare: The Value of Proactively Preparing Employees for New Roles

Related Articles

Our Commitment to Content Publishing Accuracy

Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only. The nature of the information in all of the articles is intended to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered.

The information contained within this site has been sourced and presented with reasonable care. If there are errors, please contact us by completing the form below.

Timeliness: Note that most articles published on this website remain on the website indefinitely. Only those articles that have been published within the most recent months may be considered timely. We do not remove articles regardless of the date of publication, as many, but not all, of our earlier articles may still have important relevance to some of our visitors. Use appropriate caution in acting on the information of any article.

Report inaccurate article content:

Request More Information

Submit this form, and an Enrollment Specialist will contact you to answer your questions.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Or call 877-588-3286

Begin Application Process

Start your application today!

or call 877-588-3286 877-588-3286

for help with any questions you may have.

Apply now to save on an online MBA program!

With limited-time tuition savings of more than $150 per credit hour, now is the ideal time to get started on your 100% online accelerated MBA program from UT Tyler. Choose the specialized concentration tailored to your professional goals and apply today.

This discounted tuition rate is for newly enrolled students and is valid for the January 2024 term through the October 2024 term. Student must apply by the term’s application deadline and enroll by the term’s registration deadline start to qualify. The discounted tuition rate will consist of $739.21 per credit hour or $2,217.62 per 3 credit hour course. The discounted tuition rate cannot be combined with any other scholarship or partner rate. Students who have previously stepped-out of a University of Texas at Tyler program once started will not qualify for this offer. This offer will not be retroactively available to students. The discounted tuition rate will expire in October 2024. The discounted tuition rate includes all fees and is subject to change without notice. The University reserves the right to increase tuition and fees at any time.

UT Tyler Online
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.