Healthcare is on a continuous cycle of change to improve patient care. With constant change, a competent leader is vital to the safety and quality of patient care. To achieve a high-performing healthcare team, a strong leader with the ability to efficiently communicate their visions and ideas is necessary. The following case studies will illustrate the importance of a strong leader with effective communication skills.
Case Study One: The New Manager Needs A Coach
Flora Fauna is the new nurse manager of surgical services at Happy Days Hospital. As a take charge individual, Flora held a meeting with the staff she supervises. During the meeting, one of the staff suggested that Flora hires a full-time Register Nurse (RN). Flora decided that hiring a new RN is over budget for the unit and shut the idea down without further considerations. In addition to lashing out at her staff for the suggestion, she abruptly ended the meeting. Ida Caresalot, Flora’s boss, overhears the meeting and asked to meet with her in private. In their meeting, Ida suggested Flora consider a leadership coach to assist her to succeed in her new position. Flora agrees and in the process learned to be a better listener.
Within this case study, both Flora and Ida are leaders. However, Ida is a more effective leader than Flora. As previously mentioned, Flora is a new nurse manager who is struggling with her new role, and Ida is faced with Flora not being an effective nurse leader for her unit. Instead of listening to her staff, Flora made assumptions as to why she thinks the staff is suggesting a full-time RN. Although she started the meeting with good i...
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...differences between cultures. Ruth would also benefit from taking leadership and communication courses to strengthen her skills. To prevent similar incidents in the future, the VP of Nursing Services should initiate annual mandatory in-service on diversity and cultural competence.
Proficient healthcare leaders play a vital role in quality, patient-centered care. As illustrated by the two case studies, leadership style differs widely amongst leaders. Regardless, effective leadership establishes open communication, which is crucial to building a strong healthcare team. Competent leaders not only engage and encourage team members to achieve their goals, they also develop trust amongst the team. Trust is most important in developing an effective team, as without trust communication cease to exist, limiting the sharing of ideas, observations, and questions.
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