Healthcare is a complex area with significant potential for service improvement despite the effects of increasing economic and social pressures on the quality and safety of patient care. As the largest group of healthcare professionals in direct contact with patients, nurses are well positioned to contribute to improvements in healthcare services and to the development of new policies. To influence healthcare improvements and policies effectively, nurses require leadership skills. Historically, it was thought that only nurses in management roles required leadership skills; however, the ability to influence change is a requirement at all levels of clinical practice. Transformational leadership competencies provide nurses with the skills to contribute to improvements in the quality and safety of patient care, while enhancing their career satisfaction. This article examines how nurses can apply transformational leadership to their practice. It also informs nurses how to conduct an initial self-assessment of their leadership skills and to formulate a transformational leadership development plan.
Nursing Standard. 31, 51, 54-63. doi: 10.7748/ns.2017.e10857Correspondence
This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated softwareConflict of interest
Received: 11 March 2017
Accepted: 15 June 2017
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