For our final week in class we are learning about risk management and legal responsibilities. I have to admit one of the things that scares me the most about being a nurse is sentinel events. Even the smallest mistake can have terrible consequences. Reading stories about medical mistakes is a good reminder to always follow procedures and policy. Don’t cut corners and always double check high risk tasks. Use your nursing skills and don’t be afraid to ask questions or ask for help if you are unsure. I have learned a lot about leadership skills in this class and hope to be able to incorporate them into my career.
Yay, we are on the home stretch! This week’s focus was on motivation in the workplace. Moral is so important in the work environment and I feel management should make this a top priority. Having a positive work environment can help prevent nurse burnout and the high turnover rates many facilities. Motivation, incentives, and rewards helps employees feel validated and increase the drive to improve, learn, and accept change and growth. I enjoyed reading everyone’s comments on the motivation discussion. There were many great ideas and motivating suggestions.
This week we talked about conflict resolution. I really enjoyed watching the movie, The Guardian. It was a great example of conflict and resolution, and it is nice to just decompress while watching a movie. Recently at work I have had some conflict issues I have had to address. They have involved the CNA’s I work with and their particular behaviors and work issues they displayed. It can be hard to use assertive communication, but in these situations it was necessary. CNA’s work under my license and I am ultimately responsible for their actions. If I see behaviors and mistakes that need corrected it is important to address them as soon as possible. This goes along with being a good responsible leader. I recently saw a meme that sometimes states how I feel……
This week we talked about strategic planning. One of our assignments is delayed a week but we had a couple discussions/assignments on our feelings about the BSN program and possibly adding a MSN program to UVU. It sounds like there are a lot of changes coming to the nursing department. I am interested to see where and what these changes bring. Being a part of such an honorable program has been amazing but I am ready to close the school chapter of this journey and focus on my career and family!
This week our topic of discussion was about managing change. I enjoyed this week’s discussion and the cheese story. It helped to look at each character and try to identify who I am most like. Change can be scary when you are forced to face the unknown. We are getting ready to move this summer and my daughter is terrified of the change. She is like Hem in the story right now and refuses to look at it from a different perspective and wants to stay where she is comfortable. Recognizing when there is a need for change is important but difficult to do at times. I think I tend to bounce around the different characters depending on the situation and whether or not change is welcomed. This week’s lessons were a good reminder to remain open to change and try to be positive and look at the bigger picture. Change can mean growth and growth only makes you better.
This week we discussed staffing and actually practiced creating a schedule for a 24 bed surgical unit. I have always watched those creating the schedule and thought how difficult a job it would be. You have many people to organize and make happy. There are a lot of requests and needs to consider while trying to make sure every shift has the coverage it needs without having too many “new” staff members all on the same shift. In the end you are not going to please everyone and sacrifices will have to be made. I think those in charge of staffing take a lot of heat for unhappy employees, but from what I have seen they really do try and make scheduling fair and successful. However, I think I would rather attempt staffing than budget though for sure!
Budget are possibly one of the most stressful parts of management. In order to make money, you have to spend money. This week I interviewed the owner of a produce company which ships produce to various grocery stores across Utah. Cost vs benefits analyses are performed yearly to analyze the budget and where effective savings can be made. This also used to determine which products are not selling as well and what changes can be made to improve sales. An important part of managing the budget is to enter invoices several times a week. This is a way to record sales transactions and account for requests and receipts for payment. Even the slightest mistake can affect the budget and the company greatly. When running your own business, it is important to not be over budget, running close to the goal budget is key to be successful. Profits are important because they help you figure out whether you have money left over for improvements or capital expenses. The best basis for projected sales revenues is last yea’s actual sales figures. Basically if you made $100,000 last year you obviously won’t make a million next year. It is best to estimate to be in the $80,000-$120,000 range. In order to determine what it will cost to earn those revenues you have to consider inflation, price increase and other factors. The budget guides the business and the overall goal is to grow the business financially. Employees will receive free produce often as incentives and appreciation for the job they do. Since this is a small family owned business employees work closely together with the same goals in mind, growth and profit of the business.
I feel when running your own business it would be important to have a business degree. Budgets are such an important part of being successful and will make or break the business. Even just budgeting for my own family is stressful, I can’t imagine doing it on such a large scale.
- How often did you measure and be accountable for your budget?
- Where do you first look to cut when you find you are over budget?
- How common was it to be over budget at the end of the year?
- How close to your goal budget do you like to stay?
- What do you do with the extra money if you are underbudget for a month/year?
- How much are employee raises dependent on meeting the budget?
- Which is more important to you: revenue or operating income?
- How do you involve your employees in the goal of staying within budget?
- In what areas is your company likely to over budget?
- What are the consequences for not meeting a budget?
- Who decides what your budget is?
- Do you ask your employees for their ideas on where a budget can be cut?
- Will your department be incentivized if you come in under budget?
- How do you handle disagreements on where budget cuts should be made?
- Do you provide incentives for employees who participate in budget management?
This week we talked about the future of nursing. Furthering education and using nurses to their full potential was the big area of focus. It is crazy to think of how far the nursing profession has come and where it is heading. It is an honor to be a part of this profession and finding the field where I am most passionate has been very rewarding.
This week we talked about budgets. If anything would detour me from taking a management position, it could be budget. This is not something I have experience with or particularly enjoy. Knowing the best places within a budget to make a 10% cut without affecting the morale of the unit would be difficult. I think it is important to involve the staff when coming up with ideas for budget cuts. Team effort creates several ideas and helps the unit feel involved and that their ideas are appreciated. Team approach was evident when we were asked to discuss as a team how to cut the budget by 10%. Everyone had great ideas and some broke the budget down very specifically. If I were in a management position, I would address budget cuts in this way, involve the whole unit ,and get input from as many staff members as possible.
In this weeks lessons, one of the things that stood out to me the most was the discussion on who is a better leader. It was interesting to see everyone’s responses and why they made their choice. We were told we had to make a choice, one or the other, but this was really hard to do because each gender brings unique qualities to being a leader. When you google the subject, women win the debate. I still think it comes down to the job, the person, and the people whom they lead. Women are way more respected than they once were in the past. We wouldn’t have been having this discussion 80+ years ago, but we live in a time where gender is not usually a factor when it comes to society and leadership. We live in a generation where many people are gender neutral and choosing one side or the other is offensive. It is very interesting to see how society has changed and evolved. Is this good or bad? It depends on who you ask!