Manning & Jones (2021) list six standards of a healthy work environment include skilled communication, true collaboration, effective decision-making, appropriate staffing, meaningful recognition, and authentic leadership. Two key insights that will be discussed are authentic leadership and skilled communication. Authentic leadership can clearly empower others and their sense of integrity can facilitate their need to seek diverse perspectives from others as skilled communication.
Providing support to new nurses and competencies to experienced nurses are both valuable and are known to boost confidence. Learners can benefit from many existing opportunities within the health care organization. Professional organizations also may provide leadership development experiences for learners (Snyder & Embree, 2021). There are multigenerational groups that work together, so you must find a style of coaching or mentoring that can be beneficial for all types. You have to manage people by matching your leadership style to the person (Walden University, LLC., 2014).
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Broome & Marshall (2021) describes authentic leadership as one that emphasizes on relationships between leaders and followers. It focuses on the self-development potential of the leader through self-awareness and emotional intelligence. I currently have a supervisor who I look up to as a leader. She is very self-aware and listens to me when I have an issue or need advice on how to deal with conflict. I learn through her as much as she takes away from my situations. She leads me through encouragement, and she is always honest and open with our relationship.
I have one-on-one discussions with my leader every other week where we go over my goals and accomplishments. This helps me understand what I am working towards and how I need to improve in other areas. Constructive criticism is always welcome, and I appreciate her for having the ability to share with me the bigger picture to help me achieve those goals.
Communication is a skill that all nurses in leadership must learn to master. This skill can help build relationships and trust so that everyone feels like they have a part in the success of the organization. Everyone wants to be heard and matter to someone. As a nurse leader, I would provide education and a new process or possible policy for coworkers so that they know what to do in certain situations. Having a protocol for all things like medications, other patients, coworkers, and other safety measures is a good way to get the information out to all staff.
For example, I notice that team morale is higher when you have a leader who is transparent about the overall goal. When tasks are delegated down it may seem like the work is insignificant or unnecessary. Managers and leaders can guide the team to more successful skills when they are able to share the overall vision or mission of the organization. Knowing the bigger picture can drive or encourage positive attitudes and more job satisfaction when the work is done. It will give the co-worker or follower a sense of purpose and let them know where they stand with their own journey (Broome & Marshall, 2021).
Broome, M., & Marshall, E. S. (2021). Transformational leadership in nursing: From expert clinician to influential leader (3rd ed.). New York, NY: Springer.
Manning, J., & Jones, N. (2021). Improving healthy work environments through specialty nursing professional development. Journal of Radiology Nursing, 40(3), 241–245. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jradnu.2021.05.006
Snyder, M., & Embree, J. L. (2021). Leadership experiences in a healthy work environment. Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 52(7), 309–311. https://doi.org/10.3928/00220124-20210611-04
Walden University, LLC. (Producer). (2014). Leadership [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.
he impact of leadership behaviors in creating healthy work environments is huge for not only patient satisfaction, better patient outcomes but also recruitment and retention of current staff. If you have a leader that is not engaged, doesn’t show staff that they care, or don’t have input and change then the above-mentioned will be lacking. Yafang (2011), discusses a two-dimensional model for leaders that include what many now explain as productivity or the work that is out there and the concern or well-being of patients and staff. That insight of needing balance but putting staff first is a learning curve for some. If you have disengaged leaders and staff this will reflect on the productivity and the care given to patients which could then lead to poor outcomes, rehospitalizations, and poor patient satisfaction scores.
Labrague et al. (2021) explain that having a motivational and engaged leader promotes better work ethic, better outcomes, and staff being more involved and motivated to work as well. They also explain that the leader must be authentic and I like hearing that. If I want my staff to participate, to believe in what they do then I as the leader must be authentic and work to gain trust and respect. the two main insights I found in reading these articles were that creating that positive work environment will make the work more meaningful, staff will provide better care with a leader that shows healthy behaviors, and will allow for staff to be able to help with decisions.
Just in my job in the last five years, there have been three directors. The first never came out of her office, was very disengaged and I only heard her speak when she was in staff meetings. The second director did a great start out and was motivated to get things changed, was engaged with staff, and was present but closer to retirement that all changed and he acted as the first director. Now, our current director is so engaged, rounds with staff daily ask them what is working well and what isn’t and if there are things that need to be accomplished, she gets them done. Staff is more engaged and recently we had an employee engagement survey—out of the entire hospital system ours had the best results. These skills that she has leads to better patient satisfaction scores, better morale with staff, and better patient outcomes. Staff feels that they have a voice and can go to the leader with no fear of retaliation if something is said. If something is incorrect it is a conversation and education. She doesn’t talk down to anyone and it isn’t her making all the decisions. She is the true leader and she has made great strides and impacts on work. She has made changes that the staff is asking for, she is making tasks easier and so much more. Since she has been in this role attitudes have changed, people are stepping up and helping more, patients are seeing a difference and people are happy and positive in the workplace. With covid, high census, and nursing shortages to say all this is amazing in nursing right now. Broome and Marshall (2021), explain how management really changed and focused internally more on the people within than just the organization and this is so important for a leader to do. Without the people working and the dedication, there wouldn’t be healthcare like it is today.