Keynote speaker Beverly Malone had one overriding message for nurses and nurse executives at the 15th annual Power of Nursing Leadership event Nov. 2 at the Hilton Chicago.
“Theres no way to deliver quality care to patients unless you understand power,” Malone, RN, PhD, FAAN, CEO of the National League for Nursing, told the hundreds in attendance.
The “power to care” was the theme of the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing-hosted event, and Malone admitted the word “power” comes with negative connotations.
“I think that power has a bad name,” Malone said. “In nursing, we dont want to be associated with power. Its not very nice. Your derriere rises to your shoulders and explodes your head.”
But its necessary, she said. “Its a gift to be a healer,” Malone said. “Its a gift to make a difference in peoples lives, and it takes power to do that.”
She later expounded more on what she meant by power.
“Power is moving an object from point A to point B,” Malone said. “Sometimes the most powerful thing we can do, colleagues, is moving our bodies from the bed to work.” She then talked about other levels of power such as getting others to move an object from point A to point B and then getting others to continue to do so when you are gone. And educators, she said, move minds from point A to point B.
Along with power, she stressed that nurses and nurse executives needed time both to think about how they want to move forward and to implement the ideas.
“A vision without action is a hallucination,” Malone said. “As nurses, we are famous for being busy. We do it so well. We love lists. Give me a list and check it off. If you dont dream, though, you never get to the vision or the implementation of the vision. In terms of power and leadership, start with dreaming.”
Judith Storfjell, RN, PhD, FAAN, received the 2012 Joan L. Shaver Outstanding Nurse Leader Award.
Storfjell is a professor emerita at the UIC College of Nursing. She recently retired as the associate dean for academic practice, partnerships and policy and as the executive director of the UIC College of Nursing Institute for Health Care Innovation.
According to the event program, under her leadership as executive director, the IHCI grew to include a consulting practice, faculty practice plan and award-winning nurse-managed centers that led to Storfjell being recognized as an Edge Runner in 2012 by the American Academy of Nurses.
In her acceptance speech, Storfjell predicted growth throughout all of nursing.
“I am pumped about the future of healthcare with nurses at the table,” Storfjell said.
“We need to develop new knowledge and find out what does work and what doesnt work.
“We need innovation in all areas.”
The 2012 Sage awards were awarded to Judi Jennrich, RN, PhD, ACNP, associate professor at the Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing in Maywood, Ill., and Arlene Miller, RN, PhD, FAAN, professor and chair of community, systems and mental health nursing at Rush University College of Nursing in Chicago.
According to the program, Jennrich serves as program director for acute care nurse specialist students, is the faculty director of the Asian graduate nursing student cohort.
She also is the faculty adviser to the Graduate Student Nurses Association.
Miller has been a nurse educator and researcher for more than 25 years.
“I just want to say thank you to all those who mentored me,” Jennrich said in acceptance.
Joe Grace is a regional editor.