Nurse Innovation Up 74% When Led By Approachable Leaders
A 2019 study of nurses at a hospital in Egypt looked at the impact different nurse leadership styles have on nurse innovation. The study, published in in the American Journal of Nursing Research, considered three different leadership styles:
- Transformational Leadership (which aligns closely to the leader behaviors we teach at Approachable Leadership);
- Transactional leadership; and
- Laissez Faire Leadership.
Transformational leaders achieve high performance cultures by influencing and paying individual attention to followers, being supportive, and encouraging followers to learn and grow. Transactional leaders, on the other hand, motivate primarily through a combination of reward or punishment. Laissez Faire leaders tend to abdicate responsibility don’t really use their power in any consistent way.
Which Leadership Style Gets More Nurse Innovation?
The study looked at whether the leadership style of leaders impacted nurse innovation in units they lead in eight teaching hospitals with a total of 1,954 beds. Researchers randomly surveyed 384 nurses with at least one year of experience (95% confidence interval).
The study found that nurses were more than twice as likely to have a negative perception of their leader if they were Transactional or Laissez Faire. Over 83% of nurses with a Transformational leader had a positive perception of them.
About half of the nurses in the study (49.2%) showed high innovative work behavior levels. The study then looked at which leadership style correlated most with high innovation nurses. Transformational leaders correlated to a nurse exhibiting high innovative work behavior at a 0.489 level of significance. In other words it is 74.45% more likely that a high innovation nurse works for a Transformational leader.
This finding is very consistent with our research of Approachable Leaders. Supervisors rated approachable by those they lead are much more likely to see higher organizational citizenship behavior and lower levels of turnover.
Healthcare systems have a critical need to attract and retain innovative nurses who go above and beyond at work. This study suggests the key way to achieve these results rests in the leadership style of their nurse managers.
If you want to review the study you can find it here.