Nursing Leadership 101

This is a blog. A personal blog. A personal and self-supported space on the Internet where I get to write what I want when I want about whatever I want – with only the best intentions, of course.  It is ok if you disagree with me – a little or a lot.

If you think I am talking about you but you are not specifically named, then I am not talking about you. If you think you know the situation or person to which I refer but I did not give the correct details or the person’s real name, then you are mistaken. I am a GED graduate, nursing educator, nursing leader, speaker, and students motivator. I also volunteer as an online GED classes instructor at Best GED Classes and Covcell.
… if it’s not fun, then you’re reading it all wrong.

This blog is sometimes sarcastic and purposefully edgy. This site in no way reflects the opinions of the hospitals I work or organizations I volunteer.



Never tell your staff the woes and concerns of your own life. There is no comparison between the administrative life you lead and the practice of staff nursing at the bedside for 12-hour shifts 2 – 3 times per week.

Your own mental stress and anguish with your chosen managerial position – your meetings, your budget shortages, your inventory costs, your shift-coverage heartaches, your JCAHO and Magnet surveys – pale absolutely when held against the clock-in/clock-out bondage and life/death responsibilities of today’s clinically practicing nurse professional.

And, please, save your staff the details of your home-life. It is not the same as theirs. Even if it is… it is not.

While your title may be “Leader”, your role is S*U*P*P*O*R*T. The administrative, middle management aspect of your job is what you signed up to do for the corporation. It is private and of no concern to the working nurses at all. Keep it that way. And if you don’t get it, go for your GED degree and learn how to manage this sort of situations professionally!

Staff nurses are not hired to do your bidding. And, you were not placed in your position to boss them around. You are in your position to ensure the following:

  • That your workplace is safe for staff and patients and visitors.
  • That the hospital properly admits patients to your unit that will benefit from your team’s expertise, not just because you have an open bed.
  • That the hospital has provided the items necessary in the amounts needed to care properly for the patients admitted to the service of your staff. (This includes FTEs!)
  • That payroll is correct. Sure, mistakes happen – and when brought to your attention, these mistakes become your #1 priority. IT DOES NOT MATTER WHOSE MISTAKE IT WAS – yours or the employee’s.
  • That staff are clinically competent.
  • That shifts are adequately staffed.
  • That your visible time in the workplace (read: in the Nurse’s Station) EXCEEDS your invisible time in the workplace.
  • That you are clinically competent to perform the same nursing duties as your staff…at the Expert Level.
  • That you schedule yourself for a standard patient assignment once or twice per month to help cover a shorted shift – and once or twice per pay-period during the Summer and over major Holidays.
  • That any “administrative nurses” (i.e. educators, researchers, consultants, assistants) working under your leadership DO THE SAME.

    More to come at a later date…

    Basically, respect the people doing the real job.

There is no need for them to respect yours.

…but they will if you do it right.