Until now, little has been done to explore leadership practices of consumers leading the development of statewide mental health consumer advocacy networks or the importance of consumer leadership itself. Examined in this research was the use of five exemplary leadership practices among statewide consumer network leaders involved in system transformation and social change. This multi-site descriptive survey study showed that leadership practices known to positively influence others have been used by leaders of emerging and established statewide mental health consumer advocacy networks across the United States. Application of these exemplary leadership practices builds leadership credibility needed to strengthen statewide networks. Mental health consumer advocacy networks enhance people's lives through self-help activities. Survey results and personal narratives have illustrated that leaders of statewide consumer networks have similarities and strengths, as well as areas to improve, in their use of the five practices of modeling, inspiring, challenging, enabling, and encouraging. This research has contributed to the limited body of knowledge on leadership practices of statewide mental health consumer advocacy network leaders, has built upon the works of others in self-help advocacy and leadership, and has provided direction for strengthening the development of emerging and established statewide consumer networks and other similar groups.
|Subjects||Mental health; Social work; Management; Clinical psychology|
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