Leader ship in Nur sing EVERY NURSE IS A LEADERLeadership can arise at any level and take shape informally andinformally. The hallmarks of a leader are:Taking ownership; not waiting for delegated authority,Building interpersonal relationships,Inspiring others to follow their lead,Embracing creativity and innovation,Empowering others, andChallenging the status quo.
Leader ship in Nur singLaura Wisniewski, RN, BS, CIC in All Nurses are Leaders, uses the lettersin the word LEADERSHIP as an acronym for the ten learnablecharacteristics of all nurses as leaders:L: LIFE-LONG LEARNER“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” – John F. KennedyWhether in nursing school, passing the nursing state board exam,clinical specialization and advanced certifications or obtaining otheradvanced degrees, nursing students are constantly learning. Once inthe profession and throughout their careers, nurses must continuouslylearn, unlearn and re-learn to keep up with changes in health caredeliver, technology and evidence-based practice.
Leader ship in Nur sing E: EMPATHETIC “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” – Plato Empathy is the capacity to recognize or understand another’s state of mind or emotion. It is characterized as the ability to put your self into someone else’s shoes. Empathy is the cornerstone of emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the capacity to effectively perceive, express, and understand your emotions and the emotions of others. Nurses are called upon day in and day out to help others, so recognizing how those people feel is critical to delivering superior health care.
Leader ship in Nur singA: ADVOCATE“Our lives begin to end the day we become silentabout things that matter.” – Martin Luther King Jr.An advocate is one who speaks on behalf ofanother person. Nurses have a legal andmoral duty to speak and act on the behalf oftheir patients. There is no greater privilege orresponsibility in the profession of nursing.Nurses should also be advocates for eachother in order to strengthen the professionand provide even better patient care.
Leader ship in Nur singD: DECISIVE“Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able todecide.” – Napoleon Bonaparte Critical thinking is non-linear thinking, recognizing potential consequences and preparing for various outcomes. Critical thinkers have the ability to prioritize, problem-solve, utilize available resources, collaborate, and ultimately decide on a course of action.
Leader ship in Nur singE: EXTRAORDINARY“Excellence is to do a common thing in anuncommon way.” – Booker T. WashingtonNurses often hear the comment from others, “Icould never do what you do.” The U.S.Department of Labor identifies eight universaljob skills. Most occupations require four orless of these skills. Nursing requires all eightskills which include: leadership/ persuasion,problem solving, teamwork, manual dexterity,instructing others, intuition, frequent publiccontact and physical stamina.
Leader ship in Nur singR: RESILIENT“There are three constants in life; change, choice and principles.” –Stephen R. CoveyAll industries, including health care, are experiencingunprecedented rapid “white water” change. Change now occursfaster in a year than previously during a decade. How can nurseskeep up with this pace while remaining both safe and relevant? Asnurses follow their personal and professional guiding principlesthey will effectively choose what must change and what must notchange in nursing.
Leader ship in Nur singS: SUPPORTIVE“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” – Helen KellerNurses depend on the support of other nurses. This support isdemonstrated through teamwork, mentoring and the deeper bondsof friendship. These unique relationships are forged throughshared experiences, successes and overcoming challenges.
Leader ship in Nur sing H: HEROIC “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do things with great love.” – Mother Teresa The literal meaning of the word hero is protector, defender or guardian. To be heroic is having or displaying the character or attributes of a hero such as being extraordinarily bold, altruistic, and determined.
Leader ship in Nur singI: INTUITIVE“It is always with excitement that I wake up in the morning wondering whatmy intuition will toss up to me, like gifts from the sea.” – Jonas SalkIntuition is insight or understanding of asituation that cannot be explained logically.It is often described as a “gut feeling”.According to nursing expert Patricia Benner,“Intuition is not the lack of knowledge;rather it is a result of “deep” knowledge.”
Leader ship in Nur sing P: PURPOSE DRIVEN “The purpose of life is a life of purpose.” – Robert Byrne According to the American Nurses Association, “Nursing is the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations.” It is difficult to imagine a more significant life purpose than becoming a nurse.
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