Caring for the sick is the core of nursing. As a matter of fact, nursing profession evolved from the task of caring for the sick which was initially mainly performed by women (American Association for the History of Nursing, 2006). I believe that nursing profession is a calling rather than just a job that only offers motivation from paycheck. One working in the nursing profession is not only motivated by remuneration but also by one’s attitude towards the profession. It is my philosophy that kindness, patience, devotion to the service of mankind, collaboration, and determination are necessary for success in the profession. Attitude and professional skills are very crucial for high performance in nursing.
Coaching, influencing, supporting, and directing are some of the leadership approaches effective in the nursing profession. These approaches however vary in effectiveness depending on situations in which they are applied. Coaching is best applicable to employees who lack adequate skills. A nurse leader should coach such employees so as to empower them with requisite skills and knowledge.
Influencing as an approach involves inspiring others. A nurse leader can inspire those reporting to him/her by being a good example. This is a powerful leadership approach with strong impact on the attitudes of those under a leader’s charge. Positive attitude towards nursing is very essential especially owing to the nature of the profession. It enables one to perform one’s duty with passion. Directing is most appropriate where a leader has all the skills and information needed for solving a problem while employees have little skills. The approach is also effective where a decision has to be made within a short time: during emergencies. Another important leadership approach of importance in nursing is providing support to junior employees. This approach helps in equipping them with requisite skills for delivering care to patients.
All the above approaches focus on the impact any action has on patients. The best way to ensure that high quality care services are given is to empower employees with skills and motivate them to work. The above approaches help in motivating and empowering employees since they are not centered on threats.
Personally, I lead by coaching, mentoring, and supporting my junior staff and motivating them to carry out their responsibilities with no supervision. I also involve them in decision making so that they can feel empowered. However, during emergencies, I solely make decisions and direct them on what to do. However, I treat my junior staff with respect and I am always keen to avoid acts that may demean anyone. In short, I employ both democratic and directive styles depending on situations at hand. Coaching, supporting, and influencing are components of democratic style of leadership. This is explained by the fact that it is through involving junior staff in decision making that one can coach, mentor, support, and influence them.
Considering my view of the nature of nursing, coaching, influencing, supporting, and directing approaches are important in empowering and motivating junior staff to deliver health care to patients with passion: nursing is a calling hence passion is indispensable.
American Association for the History of Nursing. (2006). Nursing history review: Official journal of the American Association for the History of Nursing. New York: Springer Pub. Co.