Posted: January 7th, 2022
Discussion from student A,
As a future nurse educator and leader of change, I hope to inspire more nurses to acquire higher education and improve clinical thinking skills to enhance and challenge our healthcare systems in promoting innovation and to increase patient satisfaction across the continuum. To encourage positive change, passion, and inspiration for learning, it is essential that nurse educators have proficient leadership skills. A leader’s ability to encourage, inspire, communicate efficiently, and to build strong teams are the foundation for successful change (Al-Hussami, Hamad, Darawad, & Maharmeh, 2017).
Two strengths I have that will help me become a strong leader is motivation and good listening skills. I am a very enthusiastic and passionate person and love to share that with others. Members of the Palliative team I work with, have stated that my joy of learning and teaching is infectious and motivates other members on the team to join in on various projects. Motivation can be an effective tool for a nursing educator to encourage positive change and to promote advancement in clinical and leadership skills.
Good listening skills help you to have a better understanding of what is being communicated, it shows respect to the speaker and can help build trust and establish good relationships. My father was a teacher and instilled in me the importance of active listening. He taught me that to be a good listener, I should make direct eye contact with the speaker, nod to show I am listening, and offer comments and/or ask questions for clarification to ensure I have heard correctly. By following these steps, I feel more engaged with the speaker and have a clear comprehension of what the person is communicating.
Leadership skills that I would like to improve upon including emotional intelligence and advanced communication skills. As mentioned previously, I am usually a very enthusiastic and passionate person. Unfortunately, when I am upset, I have difficulty thinking rationally and tend to make snap decisions. I would like to learn how to manage my personal emotions to avoid negatively affecting personal and professional relationships. Emotional intelligence can help a nurse leader identify when staff nurses are stressed, or anxious, to provide a positive influence to achieve exceptional patient care (Mansel & Einion, 2019).
Advanced communication skills can take time, practice, and determination before achieving confidence (Mahmoud, Hamad, Darawad, & Maharmeh, 2017). When I first started as a nursing student, I sat in the back of the class, barely raised my hand to offer insight, and cowered when called on. As I became more confident in my ability to communicate, I began sitting toward the front of the class and even offered my opinion before being called upon. I am motivated to continue to practice this skill set and to learn new, and more efficient ways, to improve my communication skills.
Advancing education and practice are two strategies that I will implement to become a strong leader. Leadership education can be obtained by achieving advanced degrees, continuing education classes, seminars, and webinars. There are so many opportunities available. Once education is obtained, the key to being an effective leader is to practice. By deliberately and purposefully practicing learned leadership skills, high levels of performance can be achieved (Rosch & Villanueva, 2016).
Respond from professor:
Thank you for your post. Nurses operate in a very fast-paced, and highly technical environment. They frequently encounter situations in which they are called upon to make quick decisions about patient care and must be able to effectively communicate with other members of the health care team. It is important that nurses have and maintain good leadership skills to provide care that is safe and of good quality. It is important to note that many nurses go on to become great leaders. On occasion that progression comes from experience, but pursuing continuing education is also critical.