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Keywords:

  • change;
  • innovativeness;
  • nurse leader;
  • scale for the measurement of innovativeness

clement-o’brien k.,polit d.f.& fitzpatrick j.j. (2011) Journal of Nursing Management19, 431–438 Innovativeness of nurse leaders

Aim  The purpose of the present study was to describe the innovativeness and the rate of adoption of change among chief nursing officers (CNOs) of acute care hospitals, and explore the difference in the innovativeness of CNOs of Magnet hospitals vs. non-Magnet hospitals.

Background  There is little evidence to guide the description of innovativeness for nurse leaders, crucial to the implementation of evidence-based practice standards.

Method  CNOs of acute care hospitals of New York State participated in a mailed survey which incorporated the Scale for the Measurement of Innovativeness. The response rate was 41% (106/261).

Results  The majority of the sample was prepared at the master’s level with 5–10 years of experience in the CNO role. A significant relationship was found between the innovativeness scale scores and the innovativeness diversity index. The CNOs who completed more leadership courses had implemented significantly more types of innovations and had higher innovativeness scale scores.

Conclusion  Graduate level education, years of CNO experience and leadership course completion were identified as significantly influencing innovativeness of CNOs.

Implications for nursing management  The characteristics of innovativeness for nurse leaders presented in the present study may assist organizations, CNOs and the Magnet recognition programme to describe innovativeness that supports organizations to continuously improve the quality of patient care.