Be the Next Big Thing: Nurse Leadership Skills in Health Care


Every person has that someone or a group of people they look up to. We look up to them in admiration, hoping that someday we get to be just like them. They serve as our inspirations, people who motivate us to become better. They don’t necessarily have to be rich, good looking or in very high positions. They just have to have a set of leadership or other skills that seem admirable and worthy to be looked upon and enough to move people.

But what happens when we become like them? The individuals who people admire? Do we really have a shot at becoming like one of them? Can we really be just like them, nurse leaders though we are only staff nurses? What does it take to be a person who inspires others?


What it takes

  • Assertiveness

You must be confident enough and self-assured but not too much that you become aggressive. You must stand strong in your ideals and vision and never afraid to share your thoughts about certain things. It also means that a nurse leader must be able to learn how to respect others beliefs, thoughts and feelings.

  • Time and task management

Good nurse leaders must be able to use their time wisely as time is very precious in health care. He/she must also know how to prioritize things according to urgency and importance so as not to waste time on unnecessary things and to avoid overlooking important tasks that must be done. Also, he/she must learn how to delegate. This is not a one man show. He also needs others to get things done, but when delegating tasks, the leader must also make sure that the delegate is capable of accomplishing the task.

  • Foresight

A good nurse leader must be able to foresee things. He/she must be able to anticipate whatever’s going to happen in order to prepare for it. You don’t necessarily have to be just like a fortune teller, but basing on facts and the present environment, you should be able to make intelligent guesses on what’s going to happen next. With such,, one may be able to prepare for whatever’s coming ahead.

  • A motivator

A nurse leader must not only seek for self-growth, but is also interested in the well-being of others. He/she must set a good example and motivate his/her co-workers to do well also. He/she must know how to inspire them to aspire to become something better.

  • Critical Thinking

One must learn how to think deeply yet quickly in emergency situations. In events between life and death, snap decisions must be made. There is no time for delay.

  • Good communication skills

A nurse leader must be able to communicate effectively to the patients, their co-workers and other members of the health team. They must be able to convey their thoughts effectively and clearly as well as the concerns of patients as they act as patient’s advocate.


One doesn’t necessarily be in position to act as a nurse leader, even those in low positions can possess strong leadership skills. Not only will it benefit you and the health team, but it will do good to your patients as well. After all, good leaders must be good followers, too.

Liane Clores, RN MAN

Currently an Intensive Care Unit nurse, pursuing a degree in Master of Arts in Nursing Major in Nursing Service Administration. Has been a contributor of Student Nurses Quarterly, Vox Populi, The Hillside Echo and the Voice of Nightingale publications. Other experience include: Medical-Surgical, Pediatric, Obstetric, Emergency and Recovery Room Nursing.

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