Nurse managers are responsible for overseeing the clinical activities of their nursing unit, as well as supervising support employees who perform administrative work for the department. A nurse manager’s primary responsibility is ensuring that patients are treated with care in a safe and comfortable environment.
What does a nurse manager do to achieve this goal, compared to a regular nurse? One important aspect of the role is to instill a culture of ethical practice among the nursing team, which can be achieved by educating employees about industry-approved methods of delivering healthcare services.
Additionally, nurse managers must act as mentors and role models for their employees. Nurse managers are leaders, so other nurses look to them for professional guidance and career advice. When this occurs, they should be prepared to respond supportively to employees and help them find answers. In this way, nurse managers promote employees’ personal development and professional growth.
Nurse managers are sometimes responsible for their department’s financial affairs as well. In this capacity, they may manage their organization’s finances by creating budgets or monitoring cash flow — for instance, patient fees and operational expenses. Depending on the financial health of the nursing unit, managers must determine the best way to use resources and schedule labor. Depending on the size of their unit, nurse managers often need to collect records about the services their unit delivers. This helps the facility’s executive leadership make strategic decisions.
Setting goals and communicating their unit’s strategic vision is also an important responsibility of nurse managers. They implement policies and procedures that staff members can review to better understand their own roles in the organization. To ensure that all employees are properly adhering to these policies, nurse managers must also evaluate their staff’s work performance and offer coaching where needed.