Leadership belongs to one of the phenomena that have been in existence for ages yet are very difficult to define due to the increasingly large number of concepts, notions, and ideas that they embrace with the introduction of innovations into the realm of the target area, nursing being no exception to this rule (Hamric, Hanson, Tracy, & O’Grady, 2013). Therefore, it is essential to study the instances of leadership in nursing separately to be able to extrapolate the situation and come up with a viable solution. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to analyze the leadership approach designed to manage the issues associated with organizational behavior in the nursing setting.
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Background: Leadership in Nursing, Its Challenges, and Opportunities
While the overview of the case to be described above is not expected to deliver any groundbreaking outcomes, it is believed to serve as the foundation for proving the significance of a properly chosen leadership strategy in the realm of a nursing facility. To be more accurate, the significance of designing a set of values and principles based on which communication between a nurse and a patient takes place in the context of a healthcare organization is crucial to the further enhancement of the treatment process and the positive outcome. Furthermore, the effects of the analysis may include examples of how and why an impeccable leadership framework is possible in the realm of contemporary nursing. To be more specific, opportunities for further learning will open, and the strategies for engaging nurses in the unceasing process of personal and professional growth will be open.
The rationale for the Choice: Learning from Both Strengths and Weaknesses
To showcase the importance of a stellar leadership framework, the example of Mrs. S, a Nurse Administrator in the facility where I used to work as a Nurse Assistant, will have to be considered. Although in retrospect, I will have to admit that Mrs. S had her flaws, she, nonetheless, was a very strong leader that managed to promote the active change in the environment of the facility by focusing on the importance of education among nurses and patients alike, as well as the engagement in a multicultural dialogue with the target population.
Furthermore, the example under analysis will allow exploring the issue of multidisciplinary cooperation and the efficient management of conflicts in the workplace. While the importance of providing an opportunity for nurses from different areas to share knowledge and develop new skills is currently viewed as a priority, the importance of using conflicts as a starting point for developing the skills such as the ability to negotiate, compromise, and learn in the nursing setting seems to be understudied at present (Vainieri, Smaldone, Rosa, & Carroll, 2017). Therefore, the case to be explored will ostensibly shed a lot of light on the issue of enabling nurses to use a combination of newly acquired knowledge and their healthcare experience to address multicultural issues and manage the needs of diverse patients with an increasingly high efficacy rate. As a result, the premises for reducing the instances of recidivism, as well as the lack of awareness concerning a serious health issue among patients will be avoided successfully.
Leadership Domains to Explore: The Areas Where the Talent Shines Through
When considering the effects that the leadership domain of Mrs. S chose, one must admit that it extended beyond the scope of her work, thus, allowing her to introduce a system of values based on which crucial nursing services were provided. Although Mrs. S did not address the needs of patients directly, she created the setting in which the principles of multiculturalism and a patient-centered approach, as well as the focus on the multidisciplinary cooperation, became a possibility. As a result, the premise for the consistent enhancement of the service quality was created. Mrs. S. works in several domains, including the clinical, professional, systems leadership, and health policy leadership domains. Mrs. S. arranges the work of nurses and gives them general directions, as well as ensures that their services meet the required quality level. Furthermore, Mrs. S. has also contributed to shaping the principles of the facility’s healthcare policies by promoting patient-oriented values in the organization.
Clinical Leadership: Multidisciplinary Care in the ICU Environment
According to the existing definition, the concept of clinical leadership can be explained as “ensuring a high-quality health care system that consistently provides safe and efficient care” (Daly, Jackson, Mannix, Davidson, & Hutchinson, 2014, p. 75). Viewing nursing from the specified perspective, one must admit that Mrs. S ensured a consistent process of patient and nurse education, thus, reducing the number of negative patient outcomes, as well as the instances of recidivism, to a considerable extent. The use of the multidisciplinary approach mentioned above led to a rapid rise in the quality of nursing services, including the management of patients’ needs in the intensive care unit (ICU) setting. Particularly, the emphasis on the learning process among nurses caused a massive reduction in the incidences of nosocomial infections in the identified environment (Faraji et al., 2016). The introduction of a set of rigid quality guidelines and the supervision of nurses in the ICU setting to ensure that the provided services meet the required quality standards allowed managing patients’ needs. Therefore, the focus on education and communication created an opportunity for improving quality impressively (Daly et al., 2014).
Similarly, Mrs. S showed impressive skills in executing professional leadership in the specified setting. Particularly, the issue concerning the management of communication between nurses deserves to be mentioned as one of the evident strengths of her leadership style. As stressed above, she elevated the idea of dealing with conflicts to the level where confrontations between staff members were not only handled but also used as sources of essential lessons concerning the negotiation and cross-cultural communication. As a result, nurses developed the ability to cooperate and be flexible in decision-making processes, thus, acquiring the knowledge and skills that allowed them to deliver services of the finest quality.
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Furthermore, the fact that Mrs. S promoted the idea of unceasing learning among other nurses must be recognized as an essential step in the management of the hospital’s human resources. The idea of investing in staff members by fostering responsibility, sympathy, willingness to learn, and other crucial values in them is rather sensible since it helps pave the way to their further self-directed learning. As a result, employees will gain new skills when they establish contact with diverse communities.
Finally, encouraging nurses to participate in the programs that focus on education and an increase in the level of their competencies should be recognized as a sign of a proper professional leadership strategy. Apart from stressing the significance of personal experiences, Mrs. S also pointed to the need to enroll in the courses that will provide a theoretical foundation for professional growth. As a result, each of the staff members received a powerful impetus for professional development.
The clever use of the concept of innovation as the basis for continuous improvement in a nursing environment allowed Mrs. S to excel in the systems leadership domain. Seeing how closely Mrs. S focused on the idea of multidisciplinary cooperation, it is understandable that she made it possible to manage the process of providing the required services to the target population on the “delivery system level” (Hamric et al., 2013, p. 270). Put differently, nursing services were arranged in a way that allowed for the most efficient management of time. For instance, the situations in which nurses had to work overtime and, therefore, were exposed to the threat of a workplace burnout, which is a common occurrence in the modern healthcare environment, we’re driven to a minimum (Lee, Huang, Weng, Hsieh, & Wu, 2016). The specified outcome was achieved by distributing tasks and responsibilities evenly among staff members based on their proficiency levels and the array of skills that they possessed. Furthermore, one must give Mrs. S credit for her ability to deploy available resources most efficiently to facilitate the safety and security of patients and staff members. For instance, she made efficient use of the available IT tools to make sure that patients’ personal data stayed intact.
Health Policy Leadership
Finally, Mrs. S’s ability to create the policies that help meet the needs of all stakeholders involved, maintain safety levels high, and comply with the existing regulations is worth noting. Apart from creating the system ta helps respond promptly to patients’ requests, Mrs. S also built a link between patients and community members. Using innovation as the primary tool for ensuring the consistent progress in the organization, Mrs. S fostered the idea of empowerment among staff members, thus, motivating them to excel in their performance and deliver the services that met the highest quality standards. The identified framework aligned with the requirements set legally by the state and, at the same time allowed going the extra mile to encourage the unceasing growth in the target environment.
In retrospect, the leadership strategy used by Mrs. S could be defined as a combination of the Fifth Discipline and the microsystems in health care (high-performing clinical units) (Gebert, Heinitz, & Buengeler, 2016). The three strategies blended together seamlessly, providing a solid foundation for introducing staff members to essential nursing values and quality standards. For instance, the importance of incorporating a patient-centered approach and the opportunities for nurses to gain slightly more independence in decision-making processes should be recognized. By giving nurses a greater amount of agency, one will prompt the development of responsibility and the increase in the level and quality of care (Hassanian, Rahrovan, Shayan, Farhadian, & Sadeghi, 2017).
Leadership Definition Describing the Leader: Innovation and Consistent Learning
When considering the definition of leadership that can fit the description of Mrs. S, one should consider viewing leadership as the process of promoting innovation and fostering change in the target environment (Hamric et al., 2013). Leadership can be defined as transformational in the specified content since change and employee motivation were in the focus. Indeed, even though the techniques used by Mrs. S also included supervising nurses, arranging their schedule, managing available resources, etc., innovation was always at the core of the decisions that she made in the nursing setting.
Leadership Model Representing the Leader
As stressed above, knowledge management and communication with the stakeholders involved in nursing processes was always a priority for Mrs. S. Furthermore, as a leader, she always paid close attention to the management of human resources, especially as far as their motivation was concerned. Therefore, the leadership model that she deployed could be characterized as Fifth Discipline (Orchard, Sonibare, Morse, Collins, & Al-Hamad, 2017). Based on the taxonomy of the existing transformational models provided by Hamric et al. (2013), the model that Mrs. S utilized as the means of improving the quality of nursing services falls under the category of the Fifth Discipline designed by Senge in 2006 (Hamric et al., 2013).
Indeed, a closer look at the model will reveal that it implies a heavy lean toward the development of personal mastery of the required set of skills, the active promotion of team learning, and a strong emphasis on the concept of systems thinking (Masri, Wood-Harper, & Kawalek, 2017). Indeed, in Mrs. S’ opinion, every single member of a team constituted an essential part of the organization and, therefore, played a significant role in its further progress. The identified approach made the participants believe that their efforts were highly valued by the company, and that their contribution to its success in the community was crucial. As a result, the motivation level was maintained high, and people were empowered to grow both personally and professionally. The identified ideas align with the principles of the Fifth Discipline (Hamric et al., 2013).
Respect for Cultural Diversity: Encouraging a Culture-Specific Approach
Because of the emphasis on the active communication process and the acquisition of new information on a regular basis, the philosophy endorsed by Mrs. S created extensive chances for introducing team members to the concept of cultural diversity. To be more accurate, by convincing nurses that a cultural background is an important factor that helps delineate an effective treatment model, Mrs. S persuaded them to develop not only cultural tolerance but also willingness to learn about patients’ backgrounds to incorporate the obtained information into the design of further therapies and treatment approaches.
Managing Controversy in the Workplace Setting: Communication as the Key
It should be borne in mind that, no matter how flawless a leadership model might be, any workplace setting requires dealing with certain controversies once in a while. The approach described above can be used to address the issues linked to violence-related injuries by instructing staff members in a very careful and detailed manner about managing the scenarios that involve a possible physical threat to their or patients’ well-being. By establishing a set of rigid instructions regarding the use of available security techniques and precaution measures, an effective nursing leader can prevent the instances of injuries and similar problems. Since the suggested leadership approach implies teaching staff members about crucial values and equality management standards, it is expected that the selected leadership framework will help nurses memorize the suggested safety rules and, thus, avoid and manage the problems associated with injuries.
Furthermore, the issues associated with the disclosing of patients’ personal information should be regarded as the areas of concern that the chosen leadership framework helps manage. In the scenarios that require providing assistance to underage patients, the latter may be against the disclosure of their personal information and diagnosis to their parents or legal guardians. Since the leadership approach described above demands taking the needs of all stakeholders into account, it enables a nurse not to choose between withholding the information or revealing it immediately but, instead, to balance between the two extremes and help both parties adjust to the changes in their relationships, thus, reducing the threat of a shock or a conflict (Einarsen, Skogstad, Rørvik, Lande, & Nielsen, 2016).
Collaboration Among Nurses: A Multidisciplinary Framework
The importance of an interdisciplinary approach has been stressed above as part and parcel of the model used by Mrs. S as an efficient nursing leader. However, it can be improved by pushing the envelope and expanding it to the idea of a multidisciplinary approach. In other words, instead of non-related interactions between nurses from different departments, a multidisciplinary communication process is arranged.
Moreover, the leadership model described above serves as the foundation for nurses to develop the values and characteristics that will help them participate in a multidisciplinary dialogue. By promoting the principles of knowledge sharing and emphasizing the benefits of cooperation, a leader will be able to convince nurses to cooperate and be able to negotiate and compromise in order to meet the needs of their patients.
Self-Reflection: The Set Example and Its Impact on My Leadership Skills
It seems that the example set by Mrs. S. defined my further development as a nurse. Among my leadership qualities and attributes, I must mention resourcefulness and the ability to engage in the process of problem solving by critically considering available options. I would be delighted to work in the domain of professional leadership since I would be thrilled to design original solutions for workplace issues, as well as guide nurses toward the idea of excellence and self-directed lifelong learning. By focusing on the specified issues, I would feel complete, and my job would become fulfilling.
Speaking of leadership models, I would, probably, select the Fifth Discipline approach since it encourages not only the active acquisition of knowledge and skills in nursing but also collaboration and interdisciplinary communication. As a result, the premises for a rapid improvement in the quality of services and efficacy of tasks management will become a possibility. Therefore, the Fifth Discipline seems a perfect leadership model for me.
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Given the focus on the analysis of particular situations and the necessity to cooperate, I would define my leadership as transformational. The specified definition points to the significance of introducing the idea of a continuous positive change in the nursing environment. Consequently, gradual improvement in patient outcomes and service quality will be expected.
Moreover, the identified approach helps me take culture-specific needs of patients into consideration. Focusing on diversity is paramount for the delivery of high-quality services. Thus, by encouraging nurses to learn more on a regular basis, I will enhance the process of cross-cultural communication by helping them gain the knowledge and skills that they need to communicate with patients from diverse backgrounds.
Addressing workplace controversies is another area of concern. However, with a close focus on resolving conflicts and using them as a starting point for introducing further improvement, I will be able to handle possible controversies successfully. Moreover, it will be necessary to enhance the importance of workplace ethics to prevent the instances of malpractice and similar controversial issues.
The process of collaboration will have to be based on teamwork and knowledge sharing. For example, in an ICU setting, nurses will have to be able to identify and report changes in patients’ well-being efficiently. The specified outcome will require enhancing training among nurses, reinforcing the importance of workplace guidelines, and placing a strong emphasis on the significance of meeting patients’ needs. As a result, an improvement in patient outcomes can be expected.
Conclusion: Setting the Course for a Continuous Improvement in Nursing
Because of the necessity to address the needs of an increasingly diverse population, providing quality services implies engaging in a continuous learning process and collaborating in a multidisciplinary environment is crucial for nurses working in the contemporary nursing setting. Therefore, the use of the leadership model that allows placing a great emphasis on the importance of continuous learning, efficient communication management, and the adoption of innovative techniques is vital to the improvement of patient outcomes.
It would be wrong to claim that the suggested change will resolve all possible conflicts in the nursing environment immediately. In fact, even the application of the model might be fraught with the necessity to fight resistance toward change. Indeed, seeing that the identified leadership strategy requires assigning every single member of a nursing facility with a set of new roles and responsibilities that must be met to a deadline, some nurses may be unwilling to accept the change. Nevertheless, the use of a positive role model and rewards is bound to help introduce the change successfully, thus, leading to a gradual rise in the number of recoveries and a drop in the instances of recidivism.
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