The aim of this study is to examine the issues and the progress being made in leadership and management with relevance for the residential aged care workforce. A systematic review was conducted using scientific journal databases, hand searching of specialist journals, Google, snowballing and suggestions from experts. After a seven-tiered culling process, we conducted a detailed review of 153 papers relevant to leadership and management development in aged care. Strong, effective leadership and management promotes staff job satisfaction and retention, high care quality and the well-being of care recipients, and reduces associated costs. Good leadership and effective management also play a key role in bringing about a successful change to a positive workplace culture through innovative programs and research projects. Organisational investment in improving leadership and management skills and capabilities can only improve outcomes for staff stability and productivity, care quality and budgets, and better prepare the aged care sector.