Encouraging Nursing Staff as a Manager

The nursing manager roles and responsibilities goes beyond their normal duties. They must ensure proper patient care and the job satisfaction of staff nurses.

The work of a nurse is often fulfilling. Few people can leave their job with as much satisfaction at the end of the day. They are directly involved with the badly needed care and treatment of sick or otherwise injured patients. They serve and get paid to do it on a daily basis.

drawing of nurse in uniform with hat
The nurse staff manager’s role is to understand the doctors, nursing staff, as well as the patients.

That doesn’t stop the work from seeming monotonous, demanding, or terrifying at times. Giving the same pills, making the same rounds, and giving the same shots day after day can get extremely monotonous. That’s how every job is. Once you’re good at it, you don’t think about it anymore and long for tasks that are more challenging or just different.

The managing staff often understands this concern better than most. The job can seem demanding at times, requiring overtime or on call work. Hospitals will often require you to work night shifts at times and rotate your schedule periodically. The sheer unpredictability of the schedule takes its toll as well.

Finally, for those afraid of confrontation, the idea of encouraging a patient to do something that the patient doesn’t want to do can be a terrifying task that if not dealt with right, could lead the nurse to give up entirely, rather than grow from the experience.

These are all legitimate concerns of the employees the managing nurses have to be aware of. It is their responsibility to help them overcome each of these challenges in turn. For the new manager, that might seem like a difficult task by itself. The promotion necessitates a chance for personal growth though, and these tips will help you adjust to your new responsibility.

First, before you’ll be able to make impressions on the people you work with. Remember that just because you have a new title, that doesn’t mean that, you shouldn’t still be a friend. Be a friend to those you work with. They want a leader they can relate with, talk to, and feel comfortable around.

They don’t want someone that shows fear or arrogance in the new position. Reach out to everyone and connect to them in your own unique way. Once you’re their friend, they will trust you and what you say from then on out.

Second, recognize when your employees are having a bad day. Ask them how they are doing every day. Respond appropriately and be interested in what they have to say. Meanwhile, remember that a majority of their feelings can be read in their actions. You can tell when someone is having a bad day, stressed or feeling overwhelmed by the way they go about their work.

If they lack the charisma, diligence, or focus that they usually have, feel free to pull them aside and ask how they are doing. Be accommodating and share experiences if they open up to you.

Third, be confident and happy as often as possible. Find joy in every day. Leaders inspire and affect their nursing teams by example more than by what they say. If you are finding ways to be happy or to have fun, you’re good attitude will spread to others, making the work fulfilling and worth it. Help those that you serve (for leadership is truly an opportunity to serve rather than put yourself above others). You’ll improve yours and their careers exponentially.

Leadership also means keeping track of your staff’s  work. Get trained  nursing management section of the of the nurse section of the hospital software used by your facility. You will be able to keep track of their work and praise or critique their work accordingly

A degree in nursing administration may prove to be just the boost you need to enjoy a long and successful run helping others that need your help.

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