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Transformative leadership and its role in nursing

30 August 2016

Nurses are expected to play an important role in the delivery of transformative leadership within healthcare environments. Education is key in regards to how well the fundamental principles are implemented.

What is transformative leadership?

Transformative leadership is where leaders work with colleagues to identify areas in need of change, create a vision to guide change through inspiration and then execute. Emotional intelligence-based practices like this are encouraged when promoting a positive workplace culture. Nurse leaders trained in these transformative management practices are required to instill a healthy and productive work culture in hospitals and healthcare facilities in an effort to help them cope with future challenges.

Initiatives are underway to encourage this type of leadership and courses are beginning to teach these skills. The Master of Healthcare Leadership (MHL) at Southern Cross University, for instance, includes innovative course units ‘Leading Change in Healthcare’ and ‘Social and Emotional Competence in the Workplace’.

How will it change the workplace for nurses?

In recent years, many nurses have seen the benefits of further education, particularly relating to leadership. With the employment of nurse managers projected to increase from around 13,600 to 16,600 between 2014 and 2019, according to JobOutlook, courses such as the MHL will offer nurses an understanding of best practice when managing teams and building healthy work environments.

Boosting the education and qualifications of healthcare professionals not only leads to better results for patients, but higher education can also increase effectiveness through empowering others. This is vital in a system facing staffing pressures, as the performance of the existing workforce needs to be maximised.

One of the biggest challenges for nurses in a changing healthcare landscape is simply keeping up with the curve. Increased training and education is recommended to help bring nurses up-to-date with any changes. Nurses must seize educational opportunities, like the MHL, to be in a position to take on new advanced practice roles.

The Master of Healthcare Leadership at SCU Online can enable you to stay informed, analyse data and create new initiatives, leading to further innovation and change.

Find out more about our great online courses or speak to one of our friendly Student Enrolment Advisors today on 1300 589 882.  

Research for this blog has been compiled from the white paper ‘Trends of the future: Growing challenges and new technologies changing the face of nursing’, written by Dr. Kirsten Puls.