The hidden treasure in nursing leadership: informal leaders
Article first published online: 6 APR 2011
© 2011 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Journal of Nursing Management
Special Issue: This issue: Experiences of leadership in nursing management Issue editor: Melanie Jasper
Volume 19, Issue 4, pages 517–521, May 2011
How to Cite
DOWNEY, M., PARSLOW, S. and SMART, M. (2011), The hidden treasure in nursing leadership: informal leaders. Journal of Nursing Management, 19: 517–521. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2834.2011.01253.x
- Issue published online: 13 MAY 2011
- Article first published online: 6 APR 2011
- Accepted for publication: 18 February 2011
- informal leaders;
- informal nurse leaders;
- informal leadership;
- leadership in healthcare;
- nursing management;
- nursing leadership
downey m., parslow s. & smart m. (2011) Journal of Nursing Management19, 517–521 The hidden treasure in nursing leadership: informal leaders
Aim The goal of the present article was to generate awareness of characteristics of informal leaders in healthcare with the emphasis on nurses in acute care settings. There is limited research or literature regarding informal leaders in nursing and how they positively impact nursing management, the organization and, ultimately, patient care. Identification of nurses with leadership characteristics is important so that leadership development and mentoring can occur within the nursing profession.
Background More than ever, nursing needs energetic, committed and dedicated leaders to meet the challenges of the healthcare climate and the nursing shortage. This requires nurse leaders to consider all avenues to ensure the ongoing profitability and viability of their healthcare facility.
Key issues This paper discusses clinical nurses as informal leaders; characteristics of the informal nurse leader, the role they play, how they impact their unit and how they shape the organization.
Implication for nursing management Informal nurse leaders are an underutilized asset in health care. If identified early, these nurses can be developed and empowered to impact unit performance, efficiency and environmental culture in a positive manner.