2020 has been a year of adaptation for those in the medical field. Doctors, nurses and medical professionals throughout the health care system must adapt to the changes that have come with the Coronavirus pandemic. Hospitals were reconfigured to better ensure they could serve patients, many elective procedures were postponed or canceled and those providing care were required to take additional steps to protect themselves and their patients from exposure to the virus.
Nurse managers navigating their units this year are dealing with a situation that has never been present in the past. As a result, the tools those in these leadership positions must utilize for success are a bit different than in previous years.
Tip #1: Own your leadership.
You are a leader. You have gotten this position for good reason, so embrace it. This is a time of uncertainty that requires a new level of responsibility. You are often the connection between the staff, patients and hospital leaders. Know who is available to help. What are the administrative resources? Who can answer questions about the situation? Have a list in mind so if you have a question, you know who you can go to for answers.
Tip #2: Support clinical staff
The clinical nurse who depends on you for support is likely facing immense pressure, long hours and emotional turmoil practicing in the current pandemic environment. Some are also isolating themselves from their family to reduce the risk of exposure to loved ones. This means a connection with their manager is likely even more important to their sense of support and job satisfaction than ever before.