suggestion was made by one participant that an informal appraisal should be undertaken at three months into the role. Another participant considered that such an appraisal process would result in an opportunity for feedback and agreement on future professional development. A third participant felt annual education sessions were insufficient because “you’re up here and you have say a performance issue or a learning deficit you can’t get in ‘til the end of the year what use is that”?
The orientation of the new Clinical Nurse Leader and the role of their future nursing staff or teams in this orientation were also raised. A suggestion was made: “Someone doing s o m e t e a m p r e p [ p r e p a r a t i o n ] w o r k t o e n s u r e t h e t e a m y o u ’ r e g o i n g t o l e a d … ” b y o n participant who was overwhelmingly supported to the extent that she was unable to finish her statement. The responses included: “That’s a very good idea”; “that’s lovely”; “that’s e
brilliant” and “that’s very good”.
One participant acknowledged that the transition into the role of CNL and the establishment as leader of a nursing team can be difficult. She said: “That [starting in the role] can be a very rough time”. Another participant describing it as “huge”. This led to further discussion about the importance of the Clinical Nurse Leaders’ relationships with the nursing teams. Some participants shared that at times this can be a difficult relationship. The need for a mentor was again raised, but, this time, mentors were considered to be important not only for the initial orientation of a CNL but also as an ongoing support. The meeting concluded with a participant summarising the discussion.
And trying to break down the myth about the manager, it doesn’t matter what
y o u r t i t l e i s w h e n y o u h a v e a g r o u p o f p e o p l e y o u ’ r e l e a d i n g y o u ’ l l a l w a y s b the manager and it’s trying to break that barrier. Well actually I’m just like them. e
Meeting nine was the last of the planned action research meeting and was held in August 2007. Prior to this meeting I had reflected on all the outcomes the action research group had achieved in exploring how to inform further the role and how to improve the support