Leadership Empowerment Academy for Public Health

State: KY Type: Model Practice Year: 2007

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Leadership Empowerment Academy for Public Health (LEAPH) targets Public Health employees to address Essential Public Health Service #8: Assure a competent public health care workforce. The LEAPH program was developed to address the following problem: Under- developed leadership skills lead to a stagnant workforce, poor morale, and an increase in staff turnover, which results in the lack of future leaders. The overarching goal for the LEAPH program is to guide public health employees toward the development and utilization of leadership principles and practices that assist them in working toward accomplishing their agency’s mission effectively and efficiently.

Additional goals of the LEAPH program include:

  • The development of leadership skills,
  • Achievement of personal development and self awareness,
  • Empowerment to take risks,
  • The practice of good internal and external customer service,
  • Become better communicators,
  • Understand core values, missions, and strategic plans,
  • Learn to recognize others’ contributions,
  • The importance of team building, and
  • Appreciation of cultures and diversity.
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Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness
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Leadership Empowerment Academy for Public Health
Leadership Empowerment Academy for Public Health (LEAPH) targets Public Health employees to address Essential Public Health Service #8: Assure a competent public health care workforce. The LEAPH program was developed to address the following problem: Under- developed leadership skills lead to a stagnant workforce, poor morale, and an increase in staff turnover, which results in the lack of future leaders. The overarching goal for the LEAPH program is to guide public health employees toward the development and utilization of leadership principles and practices that assist them in working toward accomplishing their agency’s mission effectively and efficiently. Additional goals of the LEAPH program include: The development of leadership skills, Achievement of personal development and self awareness, Empowerment to take risks, The practice of good internal and external customer service, Become better communicators, Understand core values, missions, and strategic plans, Learn to recognize others’ contributions, The importance of team building, and Appreciation of cultures and diversity.
The Leadership Empowerment Academy for Public Health addresses some of the problems that will arise due to future labor shortages as a result of “baby boomer” retirements. As essential service # 8 states, a competent public health workforce is crucial for the proper functioning of an effective health department. It is estimated that in the event of a pandemic, only 40% of the workforce will report to work. It is during those times that leadership skills are important to an organization and the continuity of its mission. Extensive research and an employee needs assessment survey are two processes that were used to determine the need for the LEAPH program. The Kentucky Retirement system makes it advantageous to retire on or before January 1, 2009, and more than 23% of the current workforce at the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness will be eligible to retire at that time with many having already retired. The survey was sent to all employees with a response rate of 70%. Approximately 79% of the responding employees felt that department management needed additional leadership skill development. Approximately 41% percent of the respondents thought they needed leadership training. LEAPH is a 7.5 hour day, 1 day a week, 10 week program that addresses the following: Day 1: Mission and Values/ Fundamental of Public Health  Day 2: Customer Service and Time Management  Day 3: Personal Discovery Day 4: Defining a Leader Day 5: Interpersonal communication Day 6: Team Building/Conflict Resolution Day 7: Personal Wellness and Image Day 8: Cultural Competency  Day 9: Enhancing Personal Effectiveness Day 10: Presentation/Graduation The LEAPH program is modeled after the Kentucky Public Health Leadership Institute (KPHLI). The six employees that attended KPHLI in FY06 realized the personal value they were gaining from their experience in the Institute and felt that all employees at the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness would benefit from leadership training. They selected the development of this course as their KPHLI project. KPHLI is an extensive year long leadership institute that concentrates on creating a shared vision, team building, preparedness, political, communication, advocacy skills, and many more. KPHLI is available to select candidates and concentrates on management staff. LEAPH training focuses on some of those areas but in a less extensive approach and is accessible to all employees. KPHLI is comparable to a graduate level course on leadership and LEAPH is comparable to an undergraduate level course.
Agency Community RolesThe Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness facilitated and financed the LEAPH program. The LEAPH Advisory Committee (six employees that attended the Kentucky Public Health Leadership Institute) developed, designed, and implemented this program in an attempt to meet the need for Leadership Development. This program is made available to all employees at every level. Representatives from the Louisville Metro Departments of: Policy, Planning and Evaluation; Human Resources; Training; Parks and Recreation; The University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information Science (UofLSPHIS) actively participated in the implementation and planning meetings for the LEAPH program. The Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness actively recruited outside agencies for collaboration with the LEAPH program. Long lasting social impact and promoting a culture of change can only be achieved through synergistic thinking and improved interdisciplinary collaborative partnerships. The University of Louisville provided assistance in the development of the pre- and post-test evaluation tool. A faculty member who is proficient in the area of research gave her perspective of how to assess the content of the curriculum enabling the development of a more effective tool. It is hoped that the LEAPH program will assist UofL School of Public Health with student placement in the LEAPH program or other Public Health and Wellness programs. Costs and ExpendituresThe funding source is the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. Implementation, start-up, and in-kind costs include: Supplies/Copying: $3700.00 Text/Reading Materials: $2200.00 Personality Test/Assessments: $2600.00 Lapel Pins (Whale and LEAPH): $1000.00 Stipends/Gifts: $3000.00 Jefferson Memorial Forest: $200.00 Food/ Beverages: $1000.00 Training Location: In-kind Personnel: In- kind Total: $13,700.00 ImplementationObjectives of the LEAPH program are to reach 100% participation of 320 current employees, 100% completion rate of the 20 participants enrolled in each session, and increase awareness of leadership principles as indicated by an improvement on the number of answers correct on post test. Participants will present their projects at graduation. The following chart outlines the specific tasks to achieve the goals and objectives of the LEAPH program: Enrollment of 20 Public Health and Wellness employees by self or supervisor recommendation (Quarterly). Development of 10 weekly classes of 7.5 hours totaling a 75 hour curriculum that will meet each goal. Each day in the curriculum gives a brief overview of the topic, performance objectives, and an agenda for the day.(January 2006 – April 2006). Allow class time each session for group work (Minimum of 20 hours approximately 2 hours per session). Recruit individuals that are knowledgeable to teach topics in goal area (January 2006- April 2006, dependent upon resources). Development of group project topics. Topics should be for improvement of the organization, i.e. this organization has poor employee recognition...How can we improve? (Yearly, based upon an employee satisfaction survey).
Objective 1: Increase the number of correct responses when comparing pre-test to post test  Performance Measures: Pre-test completed on day one; Post-test completed on day nine Objective 2: Increase self awareness  Performance Measures: Provide participants with self assessment tools (i.e. Myer-Briggs Type Indicator, Conflicts Dynamic Profile and Rokeach) for completion Objective 3: Document behavior change as a result of LEAPH participation  Performance Measures: Increase external and internal customer service; Gain better communication; Feel empowered to take risk
SustainabilityThe advisory committee ensures that LEAPH maintains its focus on leadership, professional, and personal development. The Director of the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness is committed to LEAPH’s principles. LEAPH encourages “every Employee to become a Leader”. This plays well into the Mayor’s strategic plan and values and is in fact one of the Core Values of Louisville Metro Government. Leadership training is one of the goals of Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness’ strategic plan. Additional goals of the public health and wellness strategic plan are: To provide the highest quality customer service to all clients, both internal and external, in a culturally sensitive manner, To develop a workplace that supports excellence, To achieve personal growth and satisfaction through training and communication, and To be a model of professionalism in all phases of operation. The plan is to offer LEAPH to other Public Health Departments in the State of Kentucky and eventually offer it to health departments nationwide. The broad based focus of LEAPH’s topics makes it marketable to other local government agencies and related 501c3 organizations. LEAPH is based on principles of the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness but the outline and package can be shared and reproduced by any local or state Public Health department. It is up to those departments to identify leaders in their own organization or community partners to implement with minimum cost and maximum result. Key Elements ReplicationThe LEAPH program has been successful in building positive relationships at the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. The group work that LEAPH requires has been instrumental in the continued work and improvement of the organization. Participants that have completed the program, exemplify how every employee can be a leader in their current position.
 
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