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Stop and Honor Your Informer Nurse Superhero

TheInformerShe pulled two siloed departments together to develop efficiencies for patients and the healthcare system. He saw an opportunity to standardize items across providers, reducing inventory and saving finances. She knows there’s a better way to complete that process, and she reaches out to colleagues to hear how others are winning in care. He is the go-to electronic medical record user and can develop any report to make your audit sing in record time. She has a completely different use for social media – one that makes executives want to unblock sites just to see what happens when she starts talking about health care.

These people are one-in-the-same. They are Informer Superheroes, and they save the day all. the. time. What better way to say ‘thank you’ than to nominate your Informer Superhero for Mosby’s fourth annual Superheroes of Nursing Informer category?

The fourth annual Superheroes of Nursing contest seeks to recognize excellence in the nursing industry as a reflection of the type of excellence that Mosby’s Nursing Suite products instill in nurses. Anyone and everyone is invited to nominate nurses who excel at certain aspects of their jobs – patient care, education, standards and regulations, time management and technology innovation. Each of these core qualities are tied to superhero roles, and the categories for the winners – the Protector, Educator, the Informer and the Validator.

The Informer category is currently open for nominations. It closes on August 15th, so nominate your Superhero today!

Nominations are accepted at ElsevierHeroes.com and Mosby’s Suite Facebook page. The four winners will be announced via Facebook in September. The winners will also be honored at the ANCC National Magnet Conference® October 8-10, 2014 in Dallas, Texas.

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Thinking Through My Leadership Manifesto

I have the privilege of learning alongside some amazing nurses. Recently we briefly talked about how what we believe influences our leadership styles and, thus, everything we do. So, it’s important to really know what it is you believe in. It made me pause, and for the next several days I really thought about what I believe as an individual and leader – to be more aware.

I believe in the triune God and the God-breathed Word, which guides my life and work. My beliefs may be divergent from others’, which should not change the way I provide care. Yet, my work and actions should be different in many ways, reflecting foundational Christian principles that undergird my life.

I believe as a leader, I am the ultimate example for my team. I must role model the way.

I believe that in healthcare, everything comes down to and revolves around people. Every. Thing. I must remember that with each decision.

I believe frontline team members are the largest source of solutions to current problems.

I believe professionals are adults and should be treated as such.

I believe that while difficult to develop and maintain, diversity is vital to the health of a team, an organization, and the final service or product.

I believe failure is not final; it should be celebrated and learned from rather than feared and avoided.

I believe the majority of people want control over their work, clear expectations, and room to autonomously shake the world.

I believe I must give the same opportunities and lessons to those around me that others have graciously and generously given me.

I believe thank you’s never get old and cannot be said enough.

I believe curiosity and inquiry are welcome aspects to any organization.

I believe the work environment should be so amazing that people are banging down the doors and waiting on lists for the opportunity to join the team.

I believe continuous learning is a requirement, not an option.

I believe collaboration is worth the effort.

Beliefs can change over time, a member of the group pointed out. She’s right. What do you deeply believe that influences each aspect of your work?

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Innovator, Be Prepared to be Copied

I never thought about it until something I helped innovate was copied. It was an odd feeling. Still is. Intrigue, anger, confusion, jealousy, smugness, concern, passion – I felt all of these.

My team and I worked hard to innovate a niche product. I found out a few weeks ago another company was working on something very similar. I wish someone had prepared me for this experience. It’s not something anyone really talks about when they discuss “innovation.” But it happens. It is the natural cycle of a product. The innovator creates, everyone learns from the innovator’s mistakes, and then everyone copies the innovation trying to make it “bigger and better.” The more I think about this situation, the more I think about a past read, Different.

After my initial shock, I was actually humbled to hear an organization much bigger than my own team was eyeing our work. I am confident my team will continue to innovate. They’re just that good. (That’s not me being prideful. That’s the truth I’ve come to know well.) And more companies will notice our work and want to use a concept for their own. I need to become more comfortable with this thought, thus the reason I am blogging about it.

Has anyone else experienced this? How do you handle it – a brief thought of it and then carry on with the work or cause?

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Learning from a CEO

I love hearing CEOs or former CEOs talk. There’s a referent power with their title, so I figure they each have something unique to teach me. So was the case last week when Cass Wheeler, the former CEO of the American Heart Association, spoke at the Fifth Annual LIVESTRONG Young Adult Alliance meeting in Austin, Texas.

He spoke about setting bold golds, something I think about often and have blogged about recently. Because he was talking largely to nonprofit directors and board members, he spoke from a programmatic view rather than a personal goal-setting view, but several of his thoughts can be extrapolated to the personal level.

Mr. Wheeler’s PowerPoint-less, 40-minute talk encompassed his nine years of experience at the Heart Association. It was riveting. He spoke with such confidence. He had the experience of setting (SMART) bold goals for one of the largest U.S. nonprofits and succeeding. He mentioned bold goals will drive the development of organizational strategic and tactical plans, propel you along a continuum of success, help you escape “business as usual,” help everyone in the organization “sing from the same sheet of music,” and cause you to focus on systems, which can save thousands – rather than tens – of lives at a time.

He also spoke about the value of collaboration and deciding what you will and will not do with another organization before starting the new partnership. While I’ve heard it many times, his reminder to under-promise and over-deliver made me pick up my pen and think about my current promises and deliverables. One of his last points was noble – even among a room full of non-profiteers: don’t worry about who gets the credit.

Sage advice. I hope I can remember it.

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Collaborate Your Heart Out

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

I want to say nurses are great collaborators; in some instances we are. It’s no secret, though, we have a problem with lateral violence in our profession. Ironically, collaboration doesn’t work well with lateral violence in the mix.

Collaboration is not easy. It requires planning and compromise, working toward a goal bigger than the individual collaborators. When it works, it’s a beautiful and powerful synergy. Some nurses have found and harnessed the power of collaboration. Have you?