Event Detail

Minister Fada

Senegal Leadership Training

July 28, 2010 – July 30, 2010

The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHP) in Senegal identified leadership strengthening as a critical component in the success of the National Health Development Plan (PNDS-II) for 2009-2018, which includes reduction of maternal and child mortality, increased access to services, the strengthening of the health system and funding mechanisms as key priorities.   Upon receiving the findings from various evaluations of the previous PNDS that showed performance lacking at all levels of the health pyramid, the MOHP leadership determined to undertake significant reforms to improve its capacity for implementation during the PNDS-II.  With the goal of better coordination and implementation, the MOHP asked MLI to support the achievement of their policy and leadership development objectives through a leadership training workshop.

The leadership training, which took place in July, 2010, was designed to address personal leadership skills needed within the Ministry of Health as well as to develop leadership competencies for the participants. The training centered around three core modules: the basic skills of transformational leadership, the fundamentals of change management, and the essential tools for effective leadership at the MOHP. Participants began by taking self-evaluation questionnaires to better understand their own leadership strengths and weaknesses and to collectively define ‘good leadership’ within the context of the MOHP in Senegal. The participants worked through two case studies that highlighted current challenges facing the MOHP:  1) Implementing resource allocation reforms in the health sector, with a focus on how the Ministry will apply the new resource allocation criteria in the 2011 budget; 2) Acting on directives and action items that are issued at various institutional meetings (such as the Joint Annual Review) through monitoring and accountability mechanisms to ensure that effective action is taken. The participants tested their newly acquired skills and knowledge in an interactive session with a Deputy from Senegal’s National Assembly. At the conclusion of the workshop, participants shared their reflections from the training in an hour-long session with Honorable Minister Modou Diagne Fada (see photo) by proposing a set of specific recommendations for strengthening a key leadership process within the MOHP.


Participant Feedback:

Dr. Ndeye Codou Lakh (Chief of the Primary Health Care Division in the Directorate of Health):

1.       What did you appreciate the most about the training?

-          Learning about my style of leadership

-          It permitted me to identify my strengths and weaknesses

-          The knowledge of leadership principles

2.       What impact has the training had on your work?

-          Promote communication

-          Create a climate of trust

-          Help create a collective leadership for successful implementation of various health sector reforms

-          Help to motivate the team to achieve objectives

3.       How can the Ministry of Health and Prevention and MLI help support leadership development in the future?

-          Implement a committee within the ministry that will focus on leadership development

-          Provide training to other members who facilitate cabinet coordination to achieve critical mass around the Minister

-          Train teams in divisions, departments, and those functioning at the operational level


Dr. Mame Cor Ndour (Abt Associates):

1.       What did you appreciate the most about the training?

We especially appreciated the innovative preparation process: The time taken to consider the concerns of targeted partners, the approach used to formulate case studies, and taking into account the results of the pre-assessment.

2.       What impact has the training had on your work?

The training reinforced the need to share information, to respect the opinions of one another, the importance of personal and collective commitment in group work, and also the need to have consensus around major questions before making decisions.

3.       How can the Ministry of Health and Prevention and MLI help support leadership development in the future?

It is imperitive for us to organize a group to monitor issues related to leadership (as a monitoring instrument or ‘watchdog’). This group should contain ‘champions’ of leadership who are in positions that enable them to properly assess the process of decision making within the MOH and understand the formulation of policies and reforms and the implementation of these policies. The composition of this group can change depending on circumstances but its connection with the cabinet of the ministry and members of the coordination meeting should be well defined.

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