Become an Influential Nurse Leader and/or Mentor For New Nurses
Why do you want to be a nurse leader This may mean mentoring, proactive inclusion in a diverse workforce, assuming a management position, becoming a policy maker in the Quality Improvement Department of a hospital, or becoming a healthcare influencer.
Becoming a Healthcare Leader or Influencer
How can you become a healthcare leader? Start by mentoring a new nurse, getting your Doctorate in Nursing Practice (DNP), and possibly securing a leadership position. The path of a leader in nursing requires lifelong learning, guiding groups to reach shared goals, and dedication to healthcare.
Mentoring is a leadership role open to experienced nurses without changing jobs or further education.
Students learn from many outstanding medical texts and practice scenarios in nursing education. This is essential to building underlying medical knowledge. However, there is much about nursing that you cannot learn from a book or in a practice lab and that you need to know on the job. This is why new nurses need mentors.
Nurse mentors also help hospitals and clinics save thousands of dollars a year. It costs hospitals around $42,000 to $64,000 to replace a nurse. There are many reasons why nurses may leave a job, but if it has to do with a discouraging work experience, mentors can prevent some problems and remedy others. For example, in the healthcare workplace, sexual harassment is not uncommon. Mentors are in a position to readily recognize such issues and show the new nurse what to do.
Mentors and mentees often meet at orientation programs. A nursing orientation is a course or set of courses designed to educate new staff members about the facility’s procedures and policies, codes of conduct, the proper way to document patient information, and more about their work responsibilities.
Diversity and Inclusion of New Nurses
The orientation can be designed to promote and initiate full inclusion for new nurses. This is more than making the new staff feel they belong and are valid participants in all relevant aspects of patient care, including decision-making. Inclusion is about sharing goals and bringing together a diverse workforce to meet the needs of the diverse populations they serve.
Patients come from different cultural, ethnic, socioeconomic, and educational backgrounds; remember, they may speak languages other than English. An inclusive healthcare organization that employs a diverse nursing staff is equipped to offer care that fits a broader range of patient needs and preferences.
An inclusive health workplace is one where patients, nurses, and the entire staff are free to speak up so they can work together to determine and implement solutions to problems that arise.
Learn to Speak Up
Healthcare systems increasingly seek the diverse perspectives of their staff to ensure patient safety and high-quality care. Mentors, coaches, and nurse training programs in communication specifically address the ability to voice concerns. Nevertheless, much evidence suggests that some employees are unable to speak up even for patient safety.
Rapport, a close and harmonious relationship in the healthcare setting, encourages nurses to express their thoughts and share their perceptions. Between staff and patients, connection improves patient satisfaction and treatment compliance and reduces medical errors and complaints. It involves empathy and respect and builds trust.
To spark rapport with patients, it is helpful to introduce yourself, listen to what they have on their minds, validate or express understanding of their fears and desires, and tell them when you will be back as precisely as possible.
Once you discover a compelling cause, go beyond speaking up with your team or patients. Tell the world about it. Use Instagram stories or Twitter and put your weight behind that ideal, policy, or project. Become a healthcare influencer. Look at the Nursa article on Top Influencers and Leaders in Healthcare Yesterday and Today.
In-service, Continuing, and Graduate Training
Mentoring also means encouraging new nurses to take thorough advantage of in-service nurse training and seriously consider further formal study and qualifications. In addition to continuing education, a requisite to maintain your nursing license, Registered Nurses (RNs) are candidates to pursue master’s or doctoral degrees that open up a world of job opportunities with a welcome jump up in the pay scale. To see how long this takes and the best universities in the field, read the Nursa article on Exciting Master’s Degrees for Nurses.
The rapidly advancing medical developments and the increasing complexity of hospitals and patient care call for further professional development in nursing.
Why Do We Need More Nurse Leaders and Influencers?
The United States is expected to add 795,700 new RN positions by 2030, a great demand on the nurse graduate pipeline over the next seven years. As more new nurses join the workforce and hospitals compete for Magnet status, considered the highest recognition of nursing excellence and leadership, healthcare organizations depend on influential leaders to unite the workforce behind the goal and the urgent need for vital, first-rate patient care.
Find a shift using the Nursa app and forge ahead towards becoming an influential nurse leader. Make your mark developing dependable, trustworthy patient care and safety for all in the healthcare workplace.