The modern world suggests that a key quality in every profession is flexibility. In other words, in order to be useful for the community, workers of various professions should develop skills in different spheres. For instance, a good manager should have psychological skills; a teacher often has to take on upbringing, etc. Similarly, the conventional medical services have extended the range of their responsibilities. Thus, nurses nowadays have a chance to have some innovative roles in the society. To be more specific, one of the new responsibilities for nurses is not actually taking care of a patient, but managing the patient care. What is more, their task is to promote changes in the workplace.
Called “intrapreneurs”, these workers use their entrepreneurial experience in a non-traditional way. In fact, these nurses introduce new opportunities for patient care, such as taking new preparations, doing non-conventional exercises, changing the patient timetable, trying different therapeutic methods and their combinations, etc. One of the key qualities of an intrepreneur should be creativity, which is welcomed at all the stages of their work. Imagination in combination with academic knowledge can do wonders, and this is what the innovative role of nurses is about.
One of the locations where the role of an intrapreneur is being practiced is Mid-Atlantic teaching hospital. Being distributed into several departments, this place creates a positive environment for change implication. Here the nurses have a chance not only to introduce a new activity, but also organize the other members of the stuff in order to work as a united team. This enables them to resolve various issues quickly and effectively, make right decisions and improve their practice as medical workers.
The intrapreneur that had been introduced by us is also a worker of the hospital. Her practice is admitted to be extremely beneficial for the hospital, as she is a successful manager and also stimulates the changes in clinical practice. Among the advantageous outcomes of her practice is effective treatment programs that are less costly than the previous conventional therapies. What is more, with the implementation of new practice the Mid-Atlantic teaching hospital has become much more popular. The interviewee was very kind to tell us about her practice in the innovative role.
Need for change
When asked about why she decided to take up the innovative role, our interviewee admitted that there had always been a need for change in the hospital. According to the intrapeneur, it is very important to have an enthusiast with creative and at the same time critical thinking in the team. This person is able to predict the problems that may occur, take necessary precautions and organize the team. Moreover, they can practice new ways of working, which can be treated as both pursuing the right ways of doing something and enriching the personal clinical experience.
Among her strategies for success our intrapeneurial names critical evaluation of the present and past practices, finding ways for improvement, and making up a creative solution for the existing problems.
Interestingly, this new role of the nurses almost does not include giving a medical help. Our interviewee says that even though it demands working in a team, an intrapeneur should be rather autonomic. This is due to the fact that this person should have their personal opinion for every case.
Among the new duties introduced by the innovative role are organizing the life of patients, their therapy, and leisure in an effective and healthy way. Imagination plays an outstanding role in this process. For instance, in case of leisure activities, the nurses are encouraged to organize different activities for patients, such as jogging groups, walking, painting, fitotherapy clubs, birthday celebrations in the groups of patients, etc. As for the treatment programs, the intrapeneurs are free to practice non-conventional therapies. These measures, however, should be taken after a deep consideration from the clinical point of view.
A successful intrapeneur, just like our interviewee, is the one whose practice appeared to be more effective then the previous one, and whose experience can be used in further medical practice. That is why an intrapeneur has to demonstrate a strategic thinking; their main question should be: “How useful will this idea be in further practice?”. One more important skill is to have an individual access to every patient. Special needs have to be considered and satisfied with special therapies.
Besides the mentioned responsibilities, the new role involves some ordeals which nurses have to face during their practice. As an example, one of the key points of her job is innovation. However, in case there is no experience in this or other field, introducing new techniques can be rather dangerous. As an example, a new medicine cannot be given to the patients without a previous evaluation. This can limit the creative ideas of the intrapeneurs to some extent.
One more complexity in the innovative role is agreeing the changes with the stuff. The intrapeneurs are creative personalities, which is sometimes hard to combine with the strict medical rules. The financing of some projects can also become a problem, as people are reluctant to pay for something they are not sure in. However, the intrapeneurs still should not be discouraged by the conservative authorities, as their skills will help them to make all the changes useful for the institution.
Apparently, this innovative role of nurses is of a paramount importance in today’s world. It enables the medical stuff to improve their practice, and gives the patients a chance to have their treatment programs changed for better. Intrapeneurs, at the same time, have a chance to express their creativity and have them applied to real situations. The practical use of their work in all spheres of medical life is obvious.
The interviewer was asked several questions, but there are some of them that reveal the essence of their profession:
- How do you effectively evaluate, differentiate, and detect need for innovation?
- I make sure that both the stuff and patients are satisfied. In case anyone has some wishes, I just think of ways to changing the program.
- How do you promote innovations in case the authorities are against?
- I make a list of benefits and possible losses, and perform it to the authorities. The benefits always prevail.
- How do you develop new programs for patients?
- This is all about creativity. Of course every activity should have a clinical basis, but the main point is to make it interesting and effective.
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Terry, C. (2010). Healthcare Jobs Continue to Grow Despite Recession. Healthcare Analysis, Web.
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