Thursday, October 7, 2010


I am what is called a floor charge nurse.That means I am in charge of every thing that happens on my side of the floor,or wing.
There is usually not one morning that I don't get through report and narcotic count before someone calls me down the hall to handle a problem,issue or crisis.
Yesterday was no exception.
I started my morning with a patient,who had seen the podiatrist the day before,bleeding all over the place from areas he had worked on.After reassuring her it would be OK.we cleaned her foot and dressed the wound,then I updated the nurse practitioner.
Thinking it would now be clear sailing I walked over to my med cart and the head of the maintenance department came to tell me "I'm painting the dining room at 9 am and the patients need to be out of there no later then 9 am".
With the words "this is the deal" I explained to the staff what was about to happen,to which I got a resounding "It can't be done!" I then added "but it has to".
Part of being a leader is making the impossible seem possible.
I called and spoke with the kitchen who also deemed it impossible until the idea came to me that we switch the breakfast carts around,instead of feeding the people in the hall first we do the dining room first.
They liked it and fully agreed to try.
Next I explain the new system to the aides who had doubts but decided to give it a try and I started to move patients into the dining room.
We all worked together and in the end where done by 8:50 am making everyone so happy that they they suggested we do this every morning.
Guess I created a monster.
Form this experience I have learned that these are the steps that make a good leader:
First come up with a plan that is plausible but be flexible enough to change it as warranted,no plan is written in stone.
Second believe in the plan so much that you will not only order others to do it but will jump right in there and prove it can be done.
Third listen to the complains of those under you and try to understand where they are coming from then adjust to their needs,while still implementing said plan.
Fourth have faith and move forward.If its wrong you'll know right away,then admit it and take the heat for what you ordered to be done,we can't always be right.
A good leader is someone who leads,now that doesn't mean your not also going to have doubts but sometimes those doubts are just personal fears of failure or inability to understand the ending but if it all seems possible then why not try it.
Every morning while driving to work I have two thing I ask God for.One is that he make me be a blessing to someone that day and the second is that he make me be a good nurse.
I ask him to help me be able to handle what will be given to me that day,not hesitate with my reactions to issues,not be afraid to act when needed and remain kind and loving even in situations where I may feel angry or resentful.
So far this strategy has helped me through even my toughest times.
I am blessed with the help of good co-workers and although some may doubt and grumble, I know that in the end if I have faith in our abilities they will also see it and trust me to lead them,if but reluctantly at first.

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