- What I Learned: Welcome to my final Reflective Blog post for my nursing leadership class. What a semester! We have learned and touched on SO many different interesting and valuable topics over the last sixteen weeks including hiring, firing, ethics, team building, staffing, change, strategic planning, motivation, risk management, and even collective bargaining. It’s hard to summarize what I’ve learned throughout this entire course in only a few sentences… so I will try to just mention the main things that have stuck out to me most. First and foremost, I realized that a nurse leader has so many more responsibilities than I had first understood at the beginning of the course. Initially, I thought that a nurse manager was in charge of hiring, firing, and scheduling. I now have learned that they also have to deal with so much more than those three things. Our lesson on budgeting has caused me to gain a whole new level of appreciation for not only the leaders in healthcare, but also for those in all areas of the workforce. On that same line of thinking, I’ve learned that there is much to be learned from leaders and managers in other occupations and lines of work. Conducting several various interviews this semester was very beneficial and eye opening for me because each individual was able to offer a different perspective and unique insight into whatever topic we were learning about that week. This course has also taught me how important it is to have a culture of teamwork and unity on a nursing unit. Managing a nursing unit is no easy task, but if your employees trust you and eachother, everyone can work together to make sure that everything is running and operating smoothly… allowing for all the health care personnel to deliver safe, high quality patient care.
- Team Activity Recap: I have really enjoyed working with my 4 team members to complete the various activities and discussions required for the course. I think my favorite things about the course, actually, were the team discussions. I was able to learn so much from the unique insights that each of my team member had to offer. Because I am not able to be working as a RN right now, I have appreciated being able to read different experiences that my team members have had working on their units. This has helped me be able to better apply this knowledge to my future career as a nurse. The teamwork in this course also helped me develop a lot of my own personal leadership skills. Each week, I (with the help of my team) had to coordinate who would be in charge of the consensus, split up various tasks and responsibilities, and determine who would be turning in any team assignments. I’ve learned the importance of sending “reminder” texts or emails throughout the week to ensure that assignments are completed on time. Each of my team members were always so willing to help and do whatever was needed to successfully complete any assignment or discussion. One of our team members had a baby in the middle of the semester, and together we were able to try to lighten her load a little bit on of a few of the assignments that were due right after she gave birth! It was pretty cool!
- Applying to My Career: This class has definitely given me a better, more accurate understanding of all that comes with being a nurse leader, manager, or supervisor. It is a lot of work… and I don’t think I’ll be ready for it for another few years. I do, however, love that I can have something to look forward to in my future. It’s extremely motivating to know that I always have the option of developing my career further… whether it’s to charge nurse, nurse manager, or even nurse practitioner. I’ve also come to realize that I don’t have to wait to be in an official “leadership position” to start being a leader. As I strive to strengthen my existing leadership qualities and develop new ones, I will be able to be seen as a leader by my fellow nursing co-workers as well as by my patients. Various lessons and activities in this course have also helped me realize some of my weaknesses as a leader. For example, I know that I tend to shy away from conflict. Instead of confronting a problem when I notice one, I resort to ignoring the problem and trying to pretend it doesn’t exist. This is a very ineffective conflict resolution technique that will only end up worsening the problem down the road. Another thing I’ve learned about myself is that I am a bit of a micro manager and perfectionist. When I become a leader on a nursing unit, I need to let some of this OCD perfectionism go. I need to be able to delegate responsibilities and tasks to my co-workers and employees instead of trying to do everything on my own. I also struggle with confidence… mostly because of how little experience I have as a nurse. This can cause others (my fellow co-workers, my superiors, and even my patients) to doubt my abilities. To try to prevent this from happening, I am going to try hard to act as self-assured and confident as I can so that others feel that they can trust, depend, and rely on me.
- Personal Feelings: Once again, I feel like my personal feelings are kind of scattered throughout this whole post… however some of the feelings I am currently feeling are relieved, excited, grateful, and nervous! I am relieved that I have finished yet another semester of nursing school! Christmas break… here I come! I am excited to apply the different things that I’ve learned from this course to my future as a nurse. I am also excited, in general, to start working as a nurse. I am very grateful for all the lessons and insights I’ve gained by taking this course! Likewise, I am grateful for my team members… as they have made this class very enjoyable and smooth for me. Finally, I am grateful for all the time and preparation that my professor has put into creating this class. Lastly, I am nervous for what lies ahead in my future as a nurse leader!!! These are good nerves… but nonetheless, nerves. As I’ve mentioned already many times, there is SO MUCH that goes into being a nurse manager. It’s intimidating!! I am hoping that after I get a few years of experience working as a bedside nurse, I will be able to feel more comfortable, confident, and ready to take this next step in my career.
Leadership clipart: https://pixabay.com/en/photos/leadership/