Participative Leadership Style in Nursing Practice


Participative leadership is a managerial technique that incorporates the input of the workforce and other firm stakeholders in decision-making. Leaders can choose to employ the participative leadership technique in a manner befitting their organizational needs. For instance, they could share the power to make decisions and the liability of their outcomes with their subordinates or facilitate the members in making resolute decisions (Odoardi et al., 2019). Additionally, they could also take the counsel of stakeholders but make the ultimate decision or even incorporate the voting to make the decision process inclusive and fair (Odoardi et al., 2019). The leadership approach offers flexibility to managers and enhances the leader-subordinate relationship in the workplace. There is also little to no resistance to the transition of operational processes since it maximizes the input of the majority of stakeholders. The appropriation of the participative leadership approach in nursing practice influences patient care, patient outcome, teamwork, and the entire healthcare organization differently.

Patient Care and Patient Outcomes

Research conducted in Korea shows that patient involvement in patient safety pursuits improves the competency of care services by nurses. Patient participation in healthcare necessitates the sharing of authority, controls, and health-linked information by service providers with the patients (Hwang et al., 2019). The study employed cross-sectional and sourced data through questionnaires with 479 nurses from Seoul, Korea. The results indicated that participants with more patient engagement in patient safety activities had soaring scores in PCC, teamwork, and safety climate (Hwang et al., 2019). Escalating nurses’ proficiency in patient-based care through encouragement to patients and a solid safety atmosphere is vital to enhancing patient involvement for improved medical care. Patient participation portrays participative leadership and promotes patient safety by reducing medical errors and injuries from falls.

Consequently, a study in Pakistan established the associations between participative leadership, managerial quality, therapeutical quality, and patient fulfillment using the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) healthcare indicator. The paper investigated the conciliating impact of management and medical standards on the interrelation between participatory leadership and care recipient satisfaction. Data were collected from 123 public hospitals in Pakistan and were analyzed using confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling (Asif et al., 2019). The findings portrayed a remarkable and positive association between participative management, administrative quality, medical quality, and patient contentment (Asif et al., 2019). The research perceived managerial and therapeutical quality as prospective moderators to participative leadership-patient satisfaction relations (Asif et al., 2019). Embracing participative leadership as an external element and administrative and medical quality as probable mediators will promote patient satisfaction.


Various authors conducted a study to unfold the intricacy of inter-occupational teamwork in primary care groups by assessing the correlation between operative heterogeneity and team productivity through the arbitrating function of information elucidation, participative and autocratic leadership. The study used data from 1105 specialists and 97 overseers in 143 Dutch primary care teams (Zijl et al., 2020). The outcome indicated a notable adverse effect of functional variability on information leading to a positive impact on team performance (Zijl et al., 2020). Consequently, high levels of either directive or participatory leadership practices abated the negative influence of operative variability on information elaboration to the degree that the ancillary adverse influence of the interprofessional differences on team productivity became negligible (Zijl et al., 2020). The participative leadership technique is essential in imparting knowledge on how different professionals in a healthcare setting can take advantage of their varying information, perspectives, and capabilities collectively for better care.

The Healthcare Organization

The evidence of leadership practices in public hospitals in Africa and their impact on employee performance, structural development, and patient care shows that the participative leadership style is effective in streamlining operations in a health setting. The study analyses six papers written by African authors on health leadership in their continent (Gilson & Agyepong, 2018). Three studies provide an overview of the occurrences in public hospitals in separate countries, while the remaining is an assessment of varying encounters of health leadership advancement (Gilson & Agyepong, 2018). The health system is complex as it consists of numerous individuals and firms working in an atmosphere of altering health demands, medical and mechanical development, and capital conditions (Gilson & Agyepong, 2018). The study reveals that the adoption of participatory leadership creates a work environment that enhances interprofessional collaborations and relationships, decision-making, creative solutions to medical problems, and staff morale (Gilson & Agyepong, 2018). Participative leadership steers the varying segments of the health structure towards common objectives and enables the inception of education and creative and extensible aptitude.


Participative leadership includes the ideas of employees and other stakeholders in making decisions. The leadership technique offers leaders flexibility in handling their employees and building their associations with their subordinates. Patient participation in health care increases the proficiency of nurses in offering care by reducing medical errors and patients’ resistance to treatment. Participatory leadership enhances patient fulfillment and decreases the adverse impact of functional heterogeneity to insignificant levels, boosting teamwork. Participatory leadership also streamlines a healthcare facility’s operations by promoting interprofessional collaborations, decision-making, and employee motivation.


Asif, M., Jameel, A., Sahito, N., Hwang, J., Hussain, A., & Manzoor, F. (2019). Can leadership enhance patient satisfaction? Assessing the role of administrative and medical quality. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(17), P. 3212. Web.

Gilson, L., & Agyepong, I. A. (2018). Strengthening Health System Leadership for better governance: What does it take? Health Policy and Planning, 33(2), 111-114.

Hwang, J.-I., Kim, S. W., & Chin, H. J. (2019). Patient participation in patient safety and its relationships with nurses’ patient-centered care competency, teamwork, and Safety Climate. Asian Nursing Research, 13(2), 130–136.

Odoardi, C., Battistelli, A., Montani, F., & Peiró, J. M. (2019). Affective commitment, participative leadership, and employee innovation: A multilevel investigation. Revista De Psicología Del Trabajo y De Las Organizaciones, 35(2), 103–113.

Zijl, A. L., Vermeeren, B., Koster, F., & Steijn, B. (2020). Interprofessional teamwork in primary care: The effect of functional heterogeneity on performance and the role of leadership. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 35(1), 10–20.

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