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Leadership in Nursing – Developing Leadership Skills

by Jackson B

Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) is an incredibly new nursing role which has been developed in the US to train highly skilled and committed nurses dedicated to the improvement of patient care and quality standards within hospitals or other patient populations. It is designed specifically for leaders who have gained the skills needed to become a leader in the health care industry, but are not yet confident enough to pursue such an opportunity.

The role of a CNL within the health care industry is to guide their team of nurses and medical staff through a process which helps to establish a sense of direction and leadership within their department. This process is carried out through continuous assessment, improvement and monitoring of the performance of the team.

There are several different types of clinical nurse leader which include: direct supervisors, project managers, leaders who have responsibility for assigning tasks and managing staff, managers who oversee the teams of nurses in an office or care unit and more complex leadership roles that encompass decision-making as well as providing direction to the staff. It is important to remember that not all nurses may feel up to the task of a leadership position, particularly those who have not gained the necessary experience or qualifications.

A CNL should have a high level of commitment to their job. Their commitment needs to be so strong that they will continue to hone their skills in the management and training areas of the role. They must have an ability to lead from a leadership standpoint and be able to communicate effectively with their team.

A CNL must also possess the qualities of leadership by example, which includes their ability to be able to develop strong relationships with the people they work closely with in their work environment. They should demonstrate that they are dedicated and serious about the tasks that they perform on a daily basis. They must also demonstrate to the people that they work with that they are responsible, committed and trustworthy, which is very important for their team members. The CNL also needs to be able to inspire, motivate and encourage team members to strive for excellence in their work.

There are many different areas that a CNL can focus on. They may need to work closely with the leadership team in order to ensure that there is constant improvement within their departments and that is geared towards continuing to improve the level of patient care within the organisation. They should also develop strategies and programs that are specific to their specific team and ensure that they are able to provide the highest quality of care possible.

It is imperative that clinical leaders understand that they are not solely responsible for developing and maintaining the nursing team or their patients. In addition to this, their role is also to make sure that the senior members within the team have a high level of trust in them and they feel appreciated. They should develop a strong communication and relationship with other members within the organisation and be able to interact freely with their team to ensure that they are able to make decisions about the future direction of their role.

CNL’s are likely to be required to perform a wide range of tasks within the organisation, including but are not limited to ensuring that they are in a position to make critical decisions about the quality and performance of the care that is being given within the care units and in collaboration with the leaders of the organisations that they serve. They should also manage the budget and take care of the staff that they work alongside.


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