How to Prepare for a Leadership Role in Nursing
Nurse executives are leaders in the healthcare field. Like executives in other industries, they have strong skills in staff management, organizational policy, strategic planning, budgeting, and a variety of other leadership areas. Nurse executives set policy, plan for the future, determine budgets, and more. If you want to become a healthcare leader, explore these five ways to prepare for a nurse leadership role.
- Join a professional nursing organization.
Develop a network of like-minded colleagues by joining a professional nursing organization. Membership in a nursing organization can provide you with educational opportunities and demonstrate your commitment to career advancement. To make the most of your membership, participate in meetings and events sponsored by the organization. If possible, join a committee, which could give you valuable experience in decision-making, communication, and other management skills.
- Be mentored … and be a mentor.
Nurses at all levels can benefit from being mentored. Find a nurse whose leadership skills impress you and ask them to mentor you. You could shadow the nurse to discover how they manage and motivate others. Then, start mentoring new nurses. You’ll have the opportunity to practice your leadership skills while helping less experienced nurses become successful.
- Speak up.
Let your supervisor know that you’d like to become a nurse leader. If your supervisor is aware of your aspirations, they may be able to give you increased responsibility so that you gain valuable experience. If you don’t speak up, your supervisor may never know that you’re seeking opportunities for growth.
- Step up.
If there is a problem in your unit, on your floor, or in your organization, step up and work toward making a positive change. Conduct a survey, form a committee, determine solutions, develop a budget, and communicate your proposed remedy. All of these steps are great ways to demonstrate that you’re a take-charge problem-solver!
- Continue your education.
Pursuing a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree to better position yourself as a leader is a great choice. Graduate-level education can help you gain leadership skills through courses in strategic planning, budgeting, and management. A capstone project can give you real-world experience that you can apply right away in your nursing job. Some nursing schools even offer nurse leadership or nurse executive specializations in their MSN programs.
If you’re ready for a leadership role in nursing, Walden University can prepare you with the essential management skills you need to help shape the future of healthcare. Walden offers a Master of Science in Nursing degree program online with a Nurse Executive specialization. Earning your MS in nursing degree online allows you to complete courses from anywhere you have internet access at any time of day that works best for your schedule, so you can continue to work as a nurse while you go to school. Online education is a practical option for nurses, who often work long hours, nights, and weekends.
If you hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, you’re already qualified to enroll in most Master of Science in Nursing programs, such as the online MSN program offered by Walden University. Walden also offers an RN to MSN path for nurses who have a hospital diploma or an associate degree in nursing. And Walden is No. 1 in Master of Science in Nursing graduates in the U.S., based on 2021 IPEDS data.
Additionally, Walden’s MSN program has earned accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Officially recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a national accreditation agency, CCNE is an autonomous accrediting agency contributing to the improvement of the public’s health. CCNE ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate, and residency programs in nursing.
Walden University is an accredited institution offering a CCNE-accredited Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree program with a Nurse Executive specialization online. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.
Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.
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