Developing the personal qualities required for effective nurse leadership
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Developing the personal qualities required for effective nurse leadership

Brian Lucas Associate lecturer, The Open University, Milton Keynes, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To understand the personal qualities that nurses require for effective leadership

  • To enable you to consider your leadership strengths and areas for improvement

  • To identify ways to enhance leadership at the individual, team and healthcare organisation level

Leadership within the healthcare system should be visible at all levels, rather than being dependent solely on the characteristics of those who exert control from the top of the organisation. All nurses can act as leaders, and providing effective leadership requires them to develop specific personal qualities and behaviours. This article explores four ‘leadership intelligences’ – spiritual, emotional, business or practice, and political – and discusses how understanding these can assist nurses to enhance their leadership skills. It also considers the evidence base for the use of these intelligences and how they can be adopted by individual nurses and healthcare organisations.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2019.e11274

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software


Conflict of interest

None declared

Lucas B (2019) Developing the personal qualities required for effective nurse leadership. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2019.e11274

Published online: 08 April 2019

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