Who: Audrey Douglass, leader, charge nurse, preceptor, senior nurse
Where: Break room at our place of employment after our shifts were over.
When: Thursday, February 2, 2017
My goal: to understand the prescpective of a servant leader, to assess what she believes to be essential qualities of an effective leader, and what she feels are her personal strengths as a leader.
First question: What is your definitition of a servant leader?
"A servant leader is a leader who uses team member input when making decisions. One that values doing what is best for the whole team as opposed to one individual (A. Douglass, personal communication, February 2, 2017).
"As a leader it is your job to lead. . To lead individuals you must know them, know their strengths and weaknesses, where they would function best, where you can help them to suceed. It is your job to lead them to success and provide them with the resources that they need to do so" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
Second questions: What are your personal leadership strengths?
"My biggest strength would be that I am not only whiling, but prefer to be apart of the team instead of a dictator. I enjoy team work, shared governance, and believe it to be very successful when managing a team" (A. Douglass, personal communication, February 2, 2017).
"I am an attentive listener and a fixer. I like to fix issues and concerns and make them work for the greater good. I am honest whether my feedback is positive or negative, even in difficult circumstances. I am very straight forward and do not beat around the bush" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
According to my research, "Listening allows the servant leader to sense the purpose in others, enhancing the leader's ability to implement and incorporate their followers' hopes and desires into a compelling vision that gives voice to followers' feelings" (Boone & Makhani, 2012, p. 89).
Third Question: What do you think you can do in your leadership role to empower others?
"I encourage others to utilize their strengths, and assist them with resources that they may need to make this happen. I want everyone to feel valued and as a crucial member of the team because they are, every person brings a quality or talent to the environment, my hope is to bring that out and watch them suceed" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
"Promoting staff satisfaction and retention programs empowers and motivates staff. It lets them know that they are appreciated and their skills and talent are valued as a part of the team. Happy people will do more, perform better, utilize their strengths, and promote growth in the company" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
Fourth question: How do you handle suggestions and feedback when negotiating changes and improvements?
"It is important to acknowledge the feedback and appreciate the opportunity to improve. If I feel that the information is valuable to the process, I would utilize it during the negotiation, revisiting the areas of concern. I encourage feedback and suggestions, it is important for team members to include their input, concerns, or positive feedback. This allows for the best outcome possible. Change is and will happen, we must adapt, there is not need to fight it" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
Fifth question: "Servant leadership focuses on the leader's need to serve . This leader delegates authority to engage staff, praises and celebrates staff successes, focuses on staff not self, provides opportunities for staff development and learning and is committed to the organization" (Finkelman, 2016, p. 13). Would you describe yourself as a servant leader?
"Absolutely, when in a leadership role, I base my success on that of my team or oriente. If you can not tell I am very big on team work and shared governance, it keeps staff involved and serving as a valued member of the team. I will say that while I do focus on staff, I also focus on my self. I want to grow, improve, and continue to educate myself as well. Perhaps if I were in more of a leadership position, it may be different" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).
Could you give an example of your ability to display this trait?
"Sure, when precepting new nurses, I offer them many resources to learn our procedures, rationales, resources to utilize for certain situations. I celebrate with them when they complete something new, accomplish a goal, or overcome a weakness. I also offer them feedback and ways to improve their skills. Through precepting and leading other nurses, I am committed to making this organization the best that it can be, providing the best patient care possible" (A. Douglass, personal communication, Feburary 2, 2017).