Journal of Intensive and Critical Care Nursing

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Perspective - Journal of Intensive and Critical Care Nursing (2023) Volume 6, Issue 2

Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing: Theory and Application

Aldijana Audenaert*

Department of Nursing Education, University of Tennessee, Health Science Center College of Pharmacy, United States

*Corresponding Author:
Aldijana Audenaert
Department of Nursing Education
University of Tennessee
Health Science Center College of Pharmacy, United States
E-mail: erkan@nelson.

Received: 28-Mar-2023, Manuscript No. AAICCN-23-96642; Editor assigned: 31-Mar-2023, PreQC No. AAICCN-23-96642(PQ); Reviewed:14-Apr-2023, QC No. AAICCN-23-96642; Revised: 17-Apr-2023, Manuscript No. AAICCN-23-96642(R); Published: 24-Apr-2023, DOI:10.35841/aaiccn-6.2.145

Citation: Audenaert A. Leadership roles and management functions in nursing: theory and application. J Intensive Crit Care Nurs. 2023;6(2):145

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Leadership and management are critical components of the nursing profession, essential to the delivery of high-quality patient care. The roles and functions of nursing leaders and managers have evolved over the years, and the focus has shifted from merely overseeing staff and operations to empowering and supporting employees and achieving organizational goals. In this essay, we will explore the key theories and applications of leadership and management in nursing.


Leadership, Patient Care, Nursing Education


One of the most influential theories of leadership is transformational leadership. This theory suggests that a leader's role is to inspire, motivate, and empower their followers to achieve a shared vision. Transformational leaders are highly effective in healthcare settings, as they can help to create a culture of collaboration, respect, and innovation. By inspiring their team members to work together towards a common goal, transformational leaders can help to improve patient outcomes and foster a positive work environment [1].

In contrast, transactional leadership emphasizes a more transactional relationship between the leader and their followers. This style of leadership is characterized by a focus on rewards and punishments, with the leader providing incentives for good performance and consequences for poor performance. While transactional leadership can be effective in certain situations, it may not be as effective in healthcare settings, as it may not promote the kind of collaboration and teamwork necessary for delivering high-quality patient care [2].

Another critical component of leadership in nursing is emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence refers to the ability to recognize and manage one's own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. Leaders with high emotional intelligence can effectively communicate with their team members, build strong relationships, and create a positive work environment. By promoting emotional intelligence among their staff, nurse leaders can help to reduce stress and burnout, improve communication, and foster a culture of empathy and compassion.

In terms of management functions, there are four primary functions that are essential to effective management in nursing: planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. Planning involves setting goals and objectives, identifying resources and potential obstacles, and developing a strategy for achieving those goals. Organizing involves determining how to allocate resources, delegating tasks, and creating a structure for achieving the desired outcomes. Leading involves motivating and inspiring employees to work towards a shared vision, while controlling involves monitoring progress, adjusting strategies as needed, and ensuring that objectives are met [3].

In conclusion, leadership and management are critical components of the nursing profession. Effective nursing leaders must be able to inspire, motivate, and empower their team members to achieve a shared vision, while also promoting emotional intelligence and fostering a positive work environment. Management functions such as planning, organizing, leading, and controlling are essential to achieving organizational goals and ensuring the delivery of high-quality patient care. By understanding these theories and applications, nursing professionals can develop the skills and knowledge necessary to become effective leaders and managers in their field.

Theory and application in management nursing

Management in nursing involves the process of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling resources to achieve specific goals and objectives in the healthcare setting. Theories of management provide frameworks for understanding and improving organizational behavior and performance. This essay will explore the application of management theories in nursing practice.

One important management theory in nursing is the contingency theory, which suggests that there is no one best way to manage organizations, and that the best approach depends on the situation. In nursing, this theory can be applied to various situations, such as the management of staff, patients, and resources. For example, a nurse manager might adopt a different management style when dealing with a team of experienced nurses versus a team of new graduates.

Another management theory that is relevant to nursing is transformational leadership. This theory focuses on the leader’s ability to inspire and motivate others to achieve their goals, and it has been linked to improved job satisfaction, staff retention, and patient outcomes in nursing. Transformational leaders in nursing might use techniques such as coaching, mentoring, and empowerment to create a positive work environment and encourage staff to provide high-quality care [4].

In addition to management theories, there are several models and frameworks that can guide nursing practice. The Plan-Do- Study-Act (PDSA) model, for example, is commonly used in quality improvement initiatives in healthcare. This model involves planning a change, implementing it, studying the results, and then acting on what was learned to make further improvements. The PDSA model can be applied to various aspects of nursing practice, such as reducing hospital-acquired infections or improving patient satisfaction. Another framework that is widely used in nursing management is the Balanced Scorecard. This framework helps organizations to align their objectives and measures across four perspectives: financial, customer, internal processes, and learning and growth. In nursing, the Balanced Scorecard can be used to measure and improve outcomes related to patient safety, quality of care, staff satisfaction, and financial performance


In conclusion, management theories and frameworks are essential tools for nursing practice. They provide a basis for understanding and improving organizational behavior and performance, as well as guiding decision-making and quality improvement initiatives. By applying these theories and frameworks to nursing practice, nurse managers can create a positive work environment, improve patient outcomes, and contribute to the overall success of the healthcare organization.


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