This post has been inspired by my completion of the second week in my new role as Head of Nursing for Specialist Medicine and Support Services and finding myself in a reflective mood.
I have decided to share a few thoughts on leadership as I reflect on my journey to this point in my personal and professional life story.
Having a tendency towards introspection, I have been reminding myself of the experiences that have brought me here. I am mindful not to over analyse after being advised of the pitfalls of over-reflection a few years ago because it can lead to feelings of inadequacy or becoming overly self-conscious. So getting the balance right is very important.
During my first two weeks, I have enjoyed meeting staff, learning about policies and systems while quietly attending a range of meetings. During these meetings, I find myself being less talkative than usual and spending my time listening to the discussions, observing behaviours, body language, the tone of the discussions and the agreed actions.
While observing, I have been thinking to myself, “so, this is what I’ll be expected to know and be prepared to be challenged on in the not too distant future.” I’m rapidly learning about the culture of the organisation by immersing myself in activities while engaging in what could be described as a participant observation exercise. I find it quite reassuring that after week 2, I’m already feeling increasingly confident that I’ll fit in and be an asset to the organisation.
My feelings of increasing confidence in the organisation, could be due to me being older, wiser and having a range of previous experiences to draw on. I know that I’ve earned my place at the table.
It really does fill you with confiedence when you have a solid foundation to build upon. For me, there’s great value in being patient, disciplined and dedicated while building a career over a period of time, rather than rising too quickly and feeling ill-equipped to mange at that level
That’s the mark of a mature leader. A great leader does not want to be the centre of attention. Instead, a great leader creates more leaders. That’s one of my goals – to support and develop many more future leaders. Talent management and succession planning is vital.
As the quote above states: “Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.” I’ve started working on the former in the firm belief that the latter will be achieved too.
I think it is safe to say that the real test of my leadership will be when standards of care are maintained in my teams regardless of where I am. To this end, I will continue to lead by example and ensure I am a positive role model. Over time, with consistency and clear articulation of expectations, this inspirational leadership style will transform the attiudes, behaviours and ultimately the culture of the teams.
This will result in an improved and more positive staff experience. It has been proven that happy staff make happy patients and that’s our ultimate goal.
Onwards and upwards, I say!
Join me and follow my blog as I’ll share more of my journey to inspire others and as a reminder that we are all learning each day. Lifelong learning is key to leadership for me.
Photo credit: https://uk.pinterest.com/pin/312929874084867749/