Development of assertive communication skills in nursing preceptorship programmes: a qualitative insight from newly qualified nurses
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Development of assertive communication skills in nursing preceptorship programmes: a qualitative insight from newly qualified nurses

Mansour Mansour Associate professor, Fundamentals of Nursing, College of Nursing Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
Roslyn Mattukoyya Senior lecturer, Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care, Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford, England

Background Being able to speak up is a prerequisite for establishing safe communication in healthcare settings. The nursing preceptorship programme represents an opportunity for newly qualified nurses to develop and practise assertive communication skills.

Aim To examine newly qualified nurses’ views on how nursing preceptorship programmes contribute to shaping their assertive communication skills.

Method 42 newly qualified nurses from four acute hospital trusts in east England completed open-ended questions included in a cross-sectional survey. Participants’ qualitative comments were analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings Three themes related to speaking up during the nursing preceptorship programme emerged: enthusiastic versus sceptical, the role of a supportive working culture, and logistical challenges.

Conclusion Nursing preceptorship programmes can develop newly qualified nurses life-enhancing assertive communication skills if they provide inspiring preceptors who act as role models, create a supportive working culture and support nursing preceptors to deliver effective preceptorship. It is imperative that nursing preceptorship programmes are adapted to enable newly qualified nurses to learn and practise assertive communication skills.

Nursing Management. 26, 4, 29-35. doi: 10.7748/nm.2019.e1857


Peer review

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

Conflict of interest

None declared


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