Knowledge and Practice Hubs

Leadership skills knowledge and practice hub

Description_of_image_used_in_CCInform_social_work_leadership_Dyagaleva_Fotolia_144464645_S Photo: Dyagaleva/Fotolia

Learning points

  • The difference between management and leadership: why leadership skills are crucial for team or first tier managers, not just those in senior positions, and how you can develop and draw on your own style and skills in day-to-day work.
  • Practical tips on how to make the most of your peer network and leadership techniques such a ‘public narrative’ and ‘common vision’ that can help you lead a cohesive team.
  • Case studies from managers explain how they used leadership skills to deal with challenging situations such as managing more experienced colleagues or feeling ‘caught in the middle’.


Mary Jackson is chief programmes officer at Frontline. She was previously the organisation’s leadership development director and established Firstline – the programme that develops social work manager‘s leadership skill and ability, so they can better support their teams and influence the wider social work system. The programme is based on extensive research into what makes for effective first line leadership in a children’s social work settings.

Mary wrote the introduction to this hub based on the research. The case studies were written by participants on the programme to share experiences of challenges in their management roles. They explains how they have used leadership skills to help overcome or manage those challenges, and improve how their teams support and protect children and families.

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