Say, what does macropractice even entail?? Well, it describes community practice, social work administration, and policy practice! And all of these areas are concerned with resolving and preventing social problems on a large scale at the societal level (DiNitto, 2008, pg.51).
What’s the difference between business management and social work administration you ask?? Well social work administration does have a lot in common with business management and public administration, but the difference is that business management is trying to generate profit and sustain itself while social work management’s leadership focuses on the goals of their mission in supporting the individuals they’re invested in helping. Social work management is moral work with a commitment to social justice and has the good of society at heart! Beat that business management (John Vassello).
The key to social work administration is leadership- however, there has been a lack of leaderships skills being taught in social work schools. Many social work professionals are calling for more leadership training in social work schools (Brilliant, 2001, pg. 325)
One reason for the lack of leadership in social work is because the bulk of student interest in the profession is the direct practice with individuals, families, and groups and these students may be least interested in leadership roles (Brilliant, 2001, pg. 327).
Some social workers are reluctant to use leadership skills because they are not comfortable with exercising power and control since they often times work with oppressed groups who are unable to defend themselves and the role is primarily defined as “enabler, mediator, and broker” rather than more aggressive roles (Brilliant, 2001, pg. 327).
Another concern of why social workers do not utilize leadership skills is that they suffer from a sense of powerlessness based on their connection to disadvantaged populations as well as their general lack of status in society since the profession is largely dominated by oppressed groups such as women and minorities (Brilliant, 2001, pg. 327).
Social workers in community practice help individuals form groups to address social problems that negatively affect a community- they help people to help themselves by developing social and political power as well as building resources to make a positive change (DiNitto and McNeece, 2008, pg. 65).
DiNitto, D., & McNeece, C. (2008). Social work: Issues and opportunities in a
challenging profession (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: Lyceum Books.
Brilliant, E. (1986) ‘Social work leadership: A missing ingredient?’ Social Work, vol. 31, pp. 325-30.