management in text devoted to nursing leadership. Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing: Theory & Application by Marquis, Huston and Jorgensen (2003) is such a text and includes definitions of leadership and management. Discussion on whether clinical leaders are more leaders than managers or whether they should be possessive of both is presented. Non-nursing leadership and management theories feature in this book. Similarly scrutiny has been directed as to what represents effective attributes and competencies in the role of clinical nurse leader.
Effective Attributes and Competencies
The literature review revealed research on attributes and competencies, including the work of Chiok Foong Loke (2001), Cook (2001), Connelly et al. (2003) and Stanley (2004). Chiok Foong Loke surveyed 100 nurses and nurse managers in Singapore and concluded that effective clinical nurse leaders enable others by promoting self belief resulting in a rise in competence. They act as role models, regularly acknowledging individual success. Cook, in his second study, although referring to leadership typologies, provides a unique collection of attributes of the clinical nurse leader. He identified five aspects of clinical leadership unique to nursing. These attributes are described as highlighting, respecting, influencing, creativity and supporting. Highlighting is the ability of the clinical nurse leader to invent new routes to completion that arose from their pursuit of further knowledge underpinned by their inquisitive behaviour. Existing nursing knowledge and procedures are questioned, and from this enquiry, original solutions are produced. Respecting refers to the correct interpretation by the clinical nurse leader of signals from both health care personnel within a defined clinical setting and the organisation that governs that setting. This correct interpretation allows for insightful responses from the nurse leader to be formulated. Influencing is the ability to predict potential in their colleagues that will allow them to independently function and translate that confidence to the individual concerned. Creativity describes the attribute that clinical nurse leaders possess that sees subscription to the shared vision of a health care organisation but also sees the ability to remain calm when chaos may arise from the implantation of that vision.