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LEADS in a Caring Environment
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Debbie Payne and Erna Hagge are both certified in LEADS in a Caring Environment, the new national framework for leadership development adopted by health organizations across Canada.
They are involved in this new movement to help transform the health system in Canada.

Debbie is core faculty for the LEADS Learning Series for the Canadian College of Health Leaders (CCHL) and was the lead author on Engage Others - one of the five fundamental research booklets for LEADS.

Erna contrinbuted to the CCHL working group of LEADS Coaches and provides coaching debriefing for the LEADS 360 assessment.  

Together, they have developed Tri-namics: Leadership Wisdom for the Health System as a labour of lov. Their vision is to have a book in the hands of every health leader in Canada to enable courageious and meaningful conversation and dialogue between and among leaders. This can lead to transformational leadership, the foundation for transforming our health system.

It is through partnerships and creative coaliations that our complex health system  can be improved. The five domains of the LEADS framework are:

Lead Self

Engage Others

Achieve Results

Develop Coalitions

System Transformation



Foreword by Dr. Graham Dickson

In the past few years, leadership development in the health sector in Canada has been recognized by provincial and national organizations alike as vital to the future of the Canadian health system.  Canada’s health system is undergoing, and will undergo dramatic transformation as it attempts to respond to the demands for financial sustainability, shifts in demographics leading to a greater demand of its services by an aging population, integration of technological advances into service delivery, and public expectations for service.  There is no factor more important in leading the needed changes than quality leadership—and leadership can be developed, nurtured, and grown through deliberate action.  That is the responsibility of all individuals in the health system wishing to help shape the health systems future, rather than simply inherit it.  My vision is that leadership development becomes a social good: that is, available to all who aspire to exercise leadership to create a sustainable, universal health system for our children.


For this reason a number of national organizations and provincial jurisdictions have endorsed the LEADS in a Caring Environment capabilities framework as a guide to the qualities of leadership that are needed to lead change in the health sector in Canada.  LEADS is a set of standards, and expectations, that define effective health leadership.  As a consequence, the Canadian Health Leadership Network (a coalition of over 30 provincial and national organizations), the Canadian College of Health Leaders (a professional body dedicated to developing and credentialing health leaders), and the Health Care Leaders Association of BC (HCLABC) have partnered in endorsing the LEADS framework as a guide to leadership development and succession planning.  This group of organizations have worked together to support the responsibility of developing materials, tools, products and instruments that can be used in a disciplined way to facilitate high quality leadership development around the capabilities within the LEADS in a Caring Environment framework.


This resource— Tri-namics™: Leadership Wisdom for Healthcare—is a tool outlining a process of development that encourages leaders to Lead Self and Engage Others (the  L, E in LEADS) and operationalizes the power of coaching as a developmental process.  Daniel Goleman, in his book Primal Leadership, identifies the coaching style of leadership as one of four constructive styles that it is important a leader develop to be effective in modern organizations.  


Tri-namics™ provides a disciplined process to develop coaching skills and encourages developmental activities to grow and develop all LEADS capabilities.  Its purpose is to integrate developmental opportunities into the workplace and give people a regimen for ongoing practice of important leadership and coaching skills.  As a consequence, I, and the organizations I work with, have been extremely privileged to work with the creators of Tri-namics™ in putting together this custom resource dedicated to developing the capabilities of the LEADS in a Caring Environment Framework.


In this resource the authors have taken the behaviours that are utilized in the LEADS in a Caring Environment 360 assessment tool and mapped each capability to a set of exercises that can be used to stimulate leadership development.  These exercises are also aligned with the content of the five LEADS in a Caring Environment resource booklets, connecting the research that underpins the framework with the developmental exercises within Tri-namics™: Leadership Wisdom for Healthcare.

Tri-namics™: Leadership Wisdom for Healthcare can be used in multitudes of ways.

It can be used for self development, to share thoughts with a mentor, peer coaching to enhance skills and critical thinking, explore activities with a coach, a support for teaching, or as part of the debrief and action following a LEADS 360 assessment.  It can be used to develop individuals within a team, be used in a workshop or program, or as a resource for activities to provide interactive coaching opportunities to extend and sustain learning.

Tri-namics™ can be used by leaders in both informal as well as formal roles.  For informal leaders, it provides a disciplined process to develop the skills they deem to be important to be more effective in their ‘activist’ role.  For formal leaders, Tri-namics™ provides activities for leadership and coaching that are aligned with the LEADS 360 behaviours for each of four levels:  front-line supervisor, mid-manager, senior leader, and executive.  Tri-namics™ provides opportunities for leaders to explore to the level they are and beyond; to build their capabilities and heighten their awareness.

The LEADS enterprise is privileged to have the opportunity to make this resource available to all individuals in Canada and beyond, who are dedicated to developing the capabilities of the LEADS in a Caring Environment framework.  It is one of many tools that both embody the spirit of LEADS in the processes of development it employs, as well as providing a practical discipline for growth and development.  Many thanks to the authors—Debbie Payne and Erna Hagge—for bringing this resource to health leaders in Canada.


Yours sincerely


Graham Dickson, PhD

Bio: Graham Dickson was the Principal Investigator in the research that led to the development of the LEADS in a Caring Environment Leadership Capabilities Framework.  He has continued to work with the Canadian Health Leadership Network (CHLNet) that is comprised of over 30 national and provincial agencies across Canada, the Health Care Leaders Association of BC, and with the Canadian College of Health Leaders to support initiatives in LEADS-based leadership development and succession planning. Graham is former Director of the Centre for Health Leadership and Research and Professor of Leadership in the Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences. Graham teaches in the Canadian Medical Association’s Physician Management Institute, the International Foundation’s Advanced Trustee Management Seminar, and is affiliated with the World Federation of Medical Managers.  He continues to work with Royal Roads University since retiring, in the role of Principal Investigator in a national research project looking at leadership for change in Canada’s health system.  Dr. Dickson has articles and chapters on leadership in health published in Canada, Europe, and Scotland. 

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