The task of leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it, for the greatness is there already. —John Buchan It can be demoralizing when managers focus primarily on the deficiencies of employees, yet it can sometimes be difficult to see beyond the negatives. Strengths-based leadership is a management approach that not only recognizes an individual’s strengths, but also draws upon these strengths to enhance the dynamics of the workplace. Strengths-based leadership can be applied to employees performing at their personal best or to those who may need redirection. In addition, the principles of strengths-based leadership can be carried over to managers themselves. When nurse managers are aware of their own strengths, they can better leverage them to effectively manage difficult situations.
•Review the article “Know Your Own Strength.” How can strengths-based leadership improve the skills and attitudes of employees? •Reflect on your own personal and professional leadership strengths. Consider how you might use these strengths to manage staff members who seem to be disengaged or problematic. In addition, determine how you might use these strengths to resolve difficult situations between employees. •Recall a time when you either observed a disengaged or problematic employee(s) at work or observed a difficult or conflict situation between employees. •Imagine that you were the nurse manager in the above situation. How might you have used your strengths to effectively manage this employee or situation? Also, give some thought to the strengths of those posing the problem. How might you have used their strengths to resolve the situation?
Post an explanation of what you consider to be your top two strengths as a leader. Then, briefly describe the situation you selected and explain how you could leverage your own strengths (applying strengths-based leadership) to successfully manage that situation. Explain at least two ways you might also capitalize on the strengths of the employee(s) involved to successfully resolve the situation.
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