Adapting to Change Through Transformational Leadership
By Brian Shannon, BSN, RN
Academic health centers have been challenged with an ever-evolving health care environment over the last several years. To adjust to these changes, a transformational leadership approach is one of the key elements for success.
One of the most important elements of our current health care environment is a focus on finding more efficient and cost effective ways to improve patient outcomes. Having leaders who adjust to these changes and help others adapt will allow us to overcome obstacles. A key step in improving our outcomes is knowing where to target our efforts with regard to management/ operations and patient care. Using evidencedbased practice and obtaining and tracking data helps us focus on areas of improvement so we can better prepare for these challenges.
Some of the most recent changes for care providers are the growing responsibilities of registered nurses (RNs), and the expectation they become more efficient while improving patient outcomes. As a nurse care team leader, I’ve seen the weighing effects on unit morale of having increased workload and responsibilities. To help our team adjust to these changes, I have been working with hospital management to advocate for our nurses and patients based on our unit needs. If all leaders in their respective areas of the hospital continue to utilize the transformational leadership style, we will be paving the way for continued improvement on all levels.
UW Health has many ways of providing positive feedback and recognition for a job well done. The Nursing Recognition Council plays a pivotal role in recognizing ways to honor nurses for their accomplishments. In the last two years, the nursing recognition council started hosting DAISY Award ceremonies to honor nurses who have been nominated by a patient or family member, for providing exceptional and compassionate care. The Hi-5 is another way to recognize a colleague for doing something above and beyond—not only through the positive feedback in the Hi-5 email, but also knowing their manager receives a copy.
The Nursing Clinical Advancement Program is yet another way to encourage UW Health’s vision and values. This program has delineated goals and objectives for nurses, which leads to further recognition through professional development.
The future of nursing will pose new challenges but we are excited to take on these challenges and use them to improve the care we provide for our patients and families.