Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts

Chairperson (Advisor 1)

Dr. Kimora Kachelmyer

Reader (Advisor 2)

Dr. Richard Brynteson


Interest in the subject of leadership is universal. The quest for knowledge about leaders and leadership has been going on for centuries. However, healthcare settings and, in particular, ambulatory healthcare settings have received surprisingly little attention in the research literature. Moreover, the study of leadership teams composed of individuals from diverse academic disciplines with expertise across differing functional areas is also lacking in research literature. A case study of a management team within a county governed, nonprofit, community-based neighborhood healthcare center in a metropolitan city in the Midwest was undertaken. The general question that guided the research was: How do members of this leadership team experience and understand leadership? Using an in-depth semistructured interview, general views on leadership and views specific to this setting were examined. Their comments explore: a) meanings attached to definitions, qualities, philosophies, roles, styles, and practices of leadership, b) whether there is a difference between managers and leaders, c) views on the emergence and selection of leaders, d) methodologies leaders use to gauge the effectiveness of leadership, e) the perceived leadership effectiveness as evaluated by themselves, their peers, and executive leader, f) the leadership challenges faced, and g) views on what is needed to enhance the effectiveness of leadership today and in the future in this setting. This study hopes to advance the understanding of leadership in healthcare settings, ambulatory healthcare settings in particular, as well as practicing leadership utilizing a team approach. An improved understanding may help leaders in organizations more effectively exercise the art of leadership.


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