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Today’s healthcare industry is fast-paced and patient care is involved. It’s not always easy to be preemptive when leadership is needed. And not everyone is cut out to be a strong nurse leader. When you have a staff nurse who shows leadership qualities it’s typically a real boon for your healthcare organization.

Leadership is a necessary role in healthcare facilities of all sizes and should be considered at every turn. For instance, your interim nursing staff shouldn’t be dismissed from screening simply because they are not regular staff members who came up through the ranks. Every nurse in your employ should be seen as a potential nurse leader and leadership should be offered based on ability and skills.

That being said, your staffing agency partner should absolutely prescreen interim nurses for leadership roles. As your organization grows so does your need for qualified nurse leaders. It’s impossible in today’s healthcare environment to ensure leadership roles are always filled. True sure leaders can be difficult to come by. That’s why prescreening for leadership is absolutely essential.

The Best Way to Prescreen for Leadership

Determining the leadership qualities isn’t easily done in an interview process. Although your candidate may come with the necessary experience to fulfill the role of nurse leader, you really won’t know until you test their mettle through the day to day challenges they face in your work environment. Management skills and leadership qualities may be similar in some cases, but rest assured a quality nurse manager does not always a leader make.

When you partner with a staffing agency to secure interim nursing staff you’re partnering with a professional recruiter who knows what to look for when prescreening. Be it a temporary role that needs filled while you experience a staff shortage, or you need someone who can hit the ground running as your patient census grows and patient care needs surge, your medical staffing professional knows how to find the right individual for the job.

What to Look For When Prescreening for Leadership

Because your nurse leader’s role is a highly valuable and integral one you need the right person for the job-the ideal fit-right away. This can be a difficult undertaking for HR alone. This critical position is a unique one and administration doesn’t always possess the skill set necessary to achieve a successful outcome.

By partnering with a staffing agency you can be assured that your interim nurse leader will possess the skills necessary to the task. You need someone in leadership who can provide the utmost in patient care, while also bringing the right kind of experience in dealing with fellow nurses and medical staff to the table. Some of the other qualifications that help determine an effective leader are:

Sharp Negotiation Skills: Nurse leaders are called in to negotiate any number of situations to a positive outcome. A leadership candidate must possess sharp negotiation skills.

Ability to Facilitate When Necessary: A leader, quite simply, must lead. This is the person to whom your other staff members will turn when cool heads and knowledge must prevail. Your potential leader must be able to facilitate as necessary.

Regulatory Knowledge and Credentials Up to Date: Leadership must be above question regarding up-to-date credentials necessary to practice nursing in your healthcare environment.

Demonstrates Skills and Experience in Managing Clinicians and Patients: Managing clinicians and patients with grace and aplomb takes skill, but it also takes experience in diplomacy.

When you enlist the recruiting skills of a staffing agency you aren’t simply ensuring your interim nurse is a qualified candidate for leadership. You also have the peace of mind of knowing that your interim nurse has been fully vetted, credentials checked and licensure is up to date. In fact your interim nurse has also been apprised of specific duties expected as a nurse at your facility so that onboarding is easy and efficient.

Finding Leadership Within

Any successful healthcare organization or facility is going to strive to foster leadership in all of their employees to some degree. Being aware and alert to the leadership qualities in your nursing staff is always a positive trait. Unfortunately it isn’t always possible to advance a staff member to a position of leadership in a timely enough manner to benefit your medical facility, staff and patients.

By prescreening your interim nurses for leadership you know you’ll be ready when the inevitable need arises. Moreover, you know that your interim staff member will be ready to take charge and lead.

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