These are important traits in a nurse, since the long hour inherent in the work environment can create fatigue and a less than happy disposition. Hence, if friendliness and patience are already inherent personality traits, this gives the nurse an important reserve to use when his or her energy reserves are eroded by the long hours of work. Clients who visit the hospital should always be made to feel at ease, especially in the case of shock, injury, or grief, which are often inherent components of the health care environment.
My preferred learning style is visual, with some components of the auditory learning style as well. This means that, before practical experience, I prefer to obtain information primarily by looking at it and secondarily by listening to it. Ideally, my learning environment should therefore be made up of lectures with plenty of visual material. In a hospital set-up, I learn best by observing how procedures are performed before trying it myself. Preferably, I prefer to observe the same procedure more than once or twice before trying it myself.
The above-mentioned skills and traits will then be used in creating a personal development plan by means of which I will create an opportunity for myself to improve my skills as strategic manager in the nursing profession.
Part II: Personal Development Plan
A personal development plan should always begin with some sort of self-evaluation in order to determine one's current position in terms of strength, weakness, and necessary area of development.
Since my personal development will focus on my role as strategic manager in the nursing profession, the skills necessary for this work will be a top priority. My cognitive knowledge of the medical profession and nursing ethics is excellent, although I do recognize the necessity of continued life-long learning as the profession develops.
In terms of nursing ethics and decision making, I will need to continually evaluate and assess my critical thinking skills in order to make sound decisions, especially when ethical dilemmas become the issue. Other important areas of development are my professional demeanor, my sense of responsibility, and my ability to manage emergency situations. In addition, I should also exercise my skills to liaise with the community and policy makers.
I have particular strengths in terms of personal skills and personality traits. I am highly critical in my thinking and am friendly and patient when working with people. I am able to remain calm in emergency situations and I am able to manage a number of different components of my work.
One potential area of improvement is my knowledge of health care policy and how I as strategic manager can liaise with policy makers to create a sound environment from which to be able to provide high quality professional nursing services to my clients.
Specifically, in the self-assessment component, the Cambridge Professional Academy (2012) suggests a number of questions. The first of these focuses on the current situation. My current strengths are my personal and professional skills. Areas that need continuous development include my professional knowledge. Specifically, my immediate goal is to work on the way in which I liaise with policy makers in the health care field. In the long-term, once I have liaised with such policy makers, I need to work on a strategic plan to create a mutually beneficial relationship between the hospital and policy makers.
In the long-term, my ultimate goal is to create a good relationship between my hospital and its stakeholders. These include both the community we serve and those who make the policies that influence the quality of care that we are able to provide. In the medium term, I need to create a specific plan to achieve the necessary long-term goals.
One strategy is to create a number of task teams to investigate a number of issues for me. Some can, for example, be assigned to the community to assess the various nursing needs the community is experiencing. To do this adequately, I need to cultivate good communications between myself and my teams. I also need to be able to function well in a team environment in order to lead them to reach the goals I set for them. While I am patient and friendly towards clients, I tend to become a little impatient when my coworkers do not immediately understand the facts or requirements I am trying to communicate to them. This is a skill I can develop by becoming part of other teams throughout the hospital. Some of my superiors, for example, head teams for various purposes in the hospital. I will use my powers of observation and listening to learn from how they interact with their team members. Specifically, I will request being part of some of these teams before I create teams of my own. I will then use the skills I have learned in this environment to improve my own communication skills with my subordinates.
My first step after this self-assessment is therefore to set short-term, medium-term, and long-term goals for myself. My first short-term goal is to communicate my intentions for self-development to my superiors, especially as this pertains to team leadership. I will communicate my desire to become a more patient and communicative leader and ask to observe them in their own leadership situations. I will engage in this for a week or more before I create teams of my own. While I am working with my own teams, I will continue to observe others in their team environment to reinforce my own team leadership skills.
The teams I will create will investigate two components of the hospital's strategic goals: its interaction with the community and its interaction with political leaders and policy makers. In the medium term then, these teams will be required to report their findings. In the community, my teams will investigate the specific demographics and needs of the community. Any changes in these needs over the last years must be assessed and addressed. In terms of politics, my teams will be required to communicate with policy makers regarding potential solutions to current challenges facing health care in the country generally and in the community specifically.
Once these reports have been received, my next goal will be to create strategic plans to address the challenges that are identified. For this, I will need my critical skills and thought processes, as well as my existing knowledge and experience. In the medium term then, my goal is to work with my teams to create strategic and achievable plans to better serve my community while also creating a political and policy environment that is conducive to the general strategic goals of the hospital.
In the long-term, implementation will be followed by a continuous process of investigation and monitoring. Programs and policies that have been implemented must be monitored for their effectiveness. At the same time, I also need to continuously investigate my profession to ensure that I am aware of the latest knowledge and trends I need to be the best strategic nursing manager possible. I can then also use this to educate my team members regarding their duties and to help them adequately complete the investigations I require of them.
In conclusion, the strengths I can use to build my personal development plan are my professional and personal skills. I can use my learning style to improve my team interaction abilities, since I tend to be a little impatient when working with coworkers; this is not a problem when I work with nursing clients. I will use my visual learning style to observe colleagues I consider to be good leaders in their various daily leadership roles. I will then use my observations to create a better working environment for the teams who work with me.
I will concentrate on improving the strategic goals of the hospital by creating an interactive environment where the community's needs can be met while I will also interact with the political community to create health care policies for the highest possible benefit of all stakeholders. Today, nurses have a much heavier and more challenging burden than only caring for clients who are often ungrateful for the services they receive. These challenges extend far beyond the long hours of work. They are also challenges of leadership and community interaction. Adequate nursing have come to mean quality of care, minimizing harm, and also creating policies to ensure these goals are met.
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