Leadership has been defined in so many ways, however, certain qualities are common among them such as approachable, passionate, goal setter, respect for others, motivation, and most importantly supportive (Kozier et al p.523). A nurse leader is not necessarily a nurse in a position of authority but rather a nurse that exemplifies excellence in themselves and challenges others to do the same. There are certain qualities nurses look for in their leaders; like commitment to excellence, clear vision and strategies focus, trustworthiness, accessibility, respectfulness, and commitment to developing their staff (Sherman, 2012).
Looking back to my leadership role a couple of months ago; It was Thursday, September 2018 when I was chosen to be the team leader to my colleagues. I was so excited because I knew I wasn’t attending to any patient that day; I was preoccupied with setting goals for my team thinking leadership role is going to be an easy one.; Unfortunately, things did not go as expected. I had to involve in assisting and overseeing other team members, which was exhausting, challenging, and tiresome. I even had a dispute with one of my team members. I knew nothing of leadership skills, which was a real struggle for me. I realized that if I had planned how I was going to perform my leadership duties, I couldn’t have become so exhausted and frustrated.
After that day, one of my other colleagues took up the leadership role the following week which I will say she did a good job compared to what I did. She was so organized, supportive, and more understanding which is characteristic of who a leader should be; I now understand what it takes to be a great leader. For instance, a skilled and knowledgeable leader understands the mechanisms of conflict management, which is the process of increasing the positive aspects of conflict while minimizing the negative aspects( ). It is not worthy that the purpose of conflict management is majorly to enhance group outcome and learning, including ensuring effective control in the workplace. Therefore, if I was well aware of conflict management techniques, I could have managed my team effectively. I have also learned that the nursing profession is not for the faint-hearted. It calls for dedication and determination to deal with everyday challenges. I am now aware that nurses are special people who should be committed to administering care to patients, educating and providing the necessary advice to them (Thomas, 2015). Like any other profession, nursing involves working with patients and colleagues who may be difficult to deal with, hence it is essential to enhance and improve your leadership skills. Leadership theory is dynamic and continues to change over time( al Salwai, 2013). Various behavioral theories were developed describing common leadership styles such as authoritarian, democratic and laissez-fair, Situational, and transitional theory (). The leadership theory I will like to look into is the democratic theory of leadership which I regarded as best this leadership style includes team members in decision-making progress and encourage creativity (textbook).
As a team leader, for instance, I ran into all kinds of reactions from my colleagues including hysteria, defensiveness, arrogance, and anger. As a professional leader, however, you are expected to observe leadership skills and ethical standards while dealing with your team members. You should treat them with the utmost care and not be disrespectful to them (Thomas, 2015). Also, as a nurse, you should know how to deal with patients. In other words, you should be highly experienced nurses who ensure that patients require quality care. For instance, you need to understand that patients suffer from diseases or take medications that may cause drowsiness, confusion, or agitation and you have to try and offer the best care, and treat them with the highest degree of professionalism. It is now 6 months since I partake in the leadership role and I have seen so how different people handle their leadership roles and I have learned the best useful strategies for handling frustrated, unrelenting, uncooperative, or unpleasant patients. As an informed student nurse, I now know how to interact with different kinds of patients including my colleagues.
Additionally, Conflict management is a vital tool to use when managing conflict in the healthcare organization setting. In case of any conflict either with patients or colleagues, you should apply proper conflict strategies to increase organizational learning. Emotional intelligence is a crucial leadership tool for a team leader who wants to succeed in their role. For instance, I have noticed that to enhance cooperation; nurse leaders should work in collaboration with the other staff to help them develop and manage emotional intelligence( )
Furthermore, I have also learned that change management strategy and integrity are essential tools for enhancing success in team leadership. In other words, personal integrity helps practitioners to make informed decisions during critical moments in the patient’s treatment plan and in managing their colleagues (Cameron, 2016). Critical thinking has been a great help to me as a team leader. Therefore, I firmly believe that it is the role of the nurse leaders to be involved in guiding other nurses in the utilization of critical thinking as a vital tool to enhance their abilities to make informed choices based on a range of factors and under a given situation. This tool is fundamental, especially in the healthcare setting that has increased incidents of multidisciplinary collaboration. Critical thinking is becoming an increasingly crucial skill for the healthcare profession particularly with the developing trends of autonomy among nurses. Communication skill is another foundation tool that should be embraced as a nurse who wants to succeed in their profession. We are working in multidisciplinary environment settings, which emphasize the importance of enhancing mutual collaboration in the health care setting (Cameron, 2016).
In summing up, I regard professional socialization as a beneficially helpful tool for the continued success of a nurse. For example, it was during nursing placements that I gained in-depth knowledge of the dynamics of the nurse-patient relationship. During the practice, our nurse leaders were focused on educating us on how to interact with patients following the triage procession. To strengthen bilateral cooperation, nursing leaders should consider arranging for their trainees to attend seminars and engage with various medical practitioners such as primary caregivers, support staff, and senior executives.
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