LaKeisha exhibits her leadership skills by inspiring her staff through her natural demonstration of the way to handle unpredictable situations. On a day when our only endo tech called in sick and all the OR techs who could help with endoscopy were not available, we had an add-on urgent bronchoscopy case that had to be done. None of the endo nurses were confident that they were able to assist the physician. LaKeisha made room in her very busy schedule and made it happen by acting as the tech, successfully assisting the bronchoscopy doctor. Later I discovered that she had never done a bronchoscopy before, but her more than 20 years of OR experience allowed her to find a way to learn what to do within a couple of hours to help resolve the situation. By performing the task herself, she showed her staff how to take the initiative to handle the situation.
LaKeisha creates an environment where attributes of trust, compassion, mutual respect, continued professional development and ethical behavior are modeled and supported. When a stressful work environment comes to LaKeisha's attention, she is able to quickly fix the problem. She changes me from being very upset, nervous, and fearful to having a sense of peace. I am able to function immediately. I know under her leadership I am safe from harm. I know she is there to guide me to be better, and I don't have to feel alone. She has a better way to handle it for me. She is very fair. She is not there to punish the employee, she is there to encourage her employees to learn from a mistake and get better. Her employees feel comfortable to report errors without fear of retribution. She is a very honest, trustworthy, and fair leader and does not play favorites. During a conflict between staff members, she always looks at both sides objectively and does not take a side. She analyzes the problem on both sides and points out each person's errors without reluctance. She is able to assess the problem immediately during the meeting, and then come up with a plan. Her staff is left with a better understanding of the situation and a deeper respect for her professional integrity.
She motivates staff with a shared vision and enthusiasm to achieve better outcomes for themselves and for their patients. Her leadership style is transformational. She promotes teamwork among staff members, lifts her staff's self-esteem, recognizes her staff members' potential and provides opportunities for them to grow, and energizes her staff members. She is the reason I love to work in this place and can exhibit my highest potential. Helping patients and providing the best service I can to the doctors is my pleasure and goal, and I can do it without it feeling tiring. When a staff member interacts with her, their energy level is always higher, enabling them to do their best to achieve the highest efficiency possible. One of the OR nurses told me that LaKeisha supported him while he was advancing his career and provided him a lot of opportunity in the department. Under her inspiration, he is able to stay positive every day when he comes to work and it energizes him to perform excellently, which in turn pleases the surgeons. Another example is how when we had a new part-time nurse in ENDO, she had a lot of acute care experience and she is also motivated. LaKeisha immediately recognized and started offering her more training in different areas and inspiring her to work in the main OR. Therefore, she was able to exhibit her highest potential.
She promotes and enhances the image of nursing within the organization, the community, and the profession. LaKeisha creates open communication with staff to support quality care and promote positive relationships with staff that increase work engagement. Her staff members can walk into her office to offer suggestions, address concerns, or express their feelings. She does not hesitate to promote, reward, or treat staff members at the appropriate times. She is not only an active learner herself, but also encourages her staff members to further their education and join different organizations. One of the very important tasks she always covers is monitoring patient care quality. She facilitates this by encouraging staff members to go to patients' rooms to communicate with each patient after the surgery. Not only does she encourage her staff, but she also often participates in patient care to set a role model for staff members.
She is accessible, available and responsive to the needs of others, encouraging critical thinking and problem solving for individuals and with the context of teams. Her credibility has become the foundation of her leadership skill. She successfully merged several changes to our department while the hospital pursued magnet status. All staff members in her division worked together as a team to smoothly handle the magnet survey. She always keeps her promises when her staff needs her help. For my school project shadow plan, I asked her to be my subject. She not only agreed, but she also had my whole plan set up for me within 5 minutes.
During communication with her staff, she takes time and pays close attention to what others have to say. She respects their opinions and allows her staff to voice their concerns. I remember one time my coworker nurse was overwhelmingly stressed from everything that was happening around her. She stepped into LaKeisha's office with tears in her eyes. Half an hour later, when she stepped out of the office, she looked very peaceful and was ready to finish the day.