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Keywords:

  • authentic leadership;
  • identification;
  • quality;
  • trust;
  • voice

wong c.a., laschinger h. & cummings g.g. (2010) Journal of Nursing Management18, 889–900 Authentic leadership and nurses' voice behaviour and perceptions of care quality

Aim  The purpose of the present study was to test a theoretical model linking authentic leadership with staff nurses’ trust in their manager, work engagement, voice behaviour and perceived unit care quality.

Background  Authentic leadership is a guide for effective leadership needed to build trust and healthier work environments because there is special attention given to honesty, integrity and high ethical standards in the development of leader–follower relationships.

Methods  A non-experimental, predictive survey design was used to test the hypothesized model in a random sample of 280 (48% response rate) registered nurses working in acute care hospitals in Ontario.

Results  The final model fitted the data acceptably (χ2 = 17.24, d.f. = 11, P = 0.10, IFI = 0.99, CFI = 0.99, RMSEA = 0.045). Authentic leadership significantly and positively influenced staff nurses’ trust in their manager and work engagement which in turn predicted voice behaviour and perceived unit care quality.

Conclusions  These findings suggest that authentic leadership and trust in the manager play a role in fostering trust, work engagement, voice behaviour and perceived quality of care.

Implications for nursing management  Nursing leaders can improve care quality and workplace conditions by paying attention to facilitating genuine and positive relationships with their staff.