1. Kingston, Mary E. MN, RN, CPHQ

Article Content

In Beyond Leading and Managing: Nursing Administration for the Future1 by Pat Yoder-Wise and Karen Kowalski, the authors assembled the best and brightest leaders in nursing to provide valuable insight into the skills, content, and challenges that comprise nursing administrative roles. The book effectively integrates the theoretical concepts and practical application for contemporary nursing leadership while imparting a pertinent examination of healthcare reality. The graduate student, as a future nurse leader, as well as new managers, are provided meaningful, synergistic content that provokes deeper contemplation while creatively augmenting formal nursing administration academic curriculum.


The construction of each chapter maximizes and challenges learning from a range of perspectives. A thoughtful, well-known quote relevant to chapter content and a brief overview initiate each chapter. The information and concepts presented blend theoretical constructs with practical approaches using diagrams, frameworks, and charts to visually illustrate key content. The chapter summary funnels the content into a brief, understandable synthesis.


There are 4 sections included at the end of each chapter that provoke even more sophisticated, scholarly thinking about the chapter content by the nursing administration graduate student.


1. The "Key Points to Lead" segment provides activities to apply the subject matter to the readers developing nursing leadership practice, for example, "Identify at least three communication filters you have used in the last month" or "Describe examples of tools that could be used in coaching sessions." Nursing administration instructors can use the activities in this section for on-ground or online discussions to deepen the understanding and practicality of the content.


2. The "Literature Box" features a synopsis of a contemporary published article from relevant leadership journals and publications such as The Journal of Nursing Administration and Harvard Business Review. The featured article relates chapter content to research studies and applicable concepts advancing scholarly evaluation of the subject matter by the nursing administration graduate student.


3. "Contemplations" inspires meditative reflection on how the chapter content relates to observations made by the student in residency experiences (practicum) and everyday personal practice. The questions trigger discerning introspection for a seasoned or novice nursing leader.


4. Storytelling as a strategy for memorable learning experiences is effectively illustrated in the "Leader Story" segment, which features personal wisdom and perspectives on the chapter content through the eyes of some of today's key nursing leaders. Their own stories provide profound but practical examples of how the content is applied by practicing nurse administrators.



The imaginative construction of each chapter is enhanced by the actual content itself, which embraces a broad range of contemporary nursing leadership issues and concepts. Some content highlights include the following:


Forecasting: Providing Direction to Success

Preparing for future challenges and opportunities requires the ability to use trends and predictions to plan for change. Forecasting necessitates careful consideration of probabilities, trends, and scenarios before a course of action or decision is made. Thinking that incorporates information, patterns, new activities, and possibilities support the evolution of current practices with the mindful shaping of practice for the future. The forecasting chapter elevates thinking of change beyond reactionary or tradition perspectives of change management toward meaningful, influential planning. Forecasting is an essential component for the nursing administration student to understand.


Developing a Culture of Caring, Learning, and Service

The chief nursing officer role is essentially to create a culture that conveys a positive workplace where employees are valued and supported in their personal and professional growth. The chapter about culture is profound in its simplicity. Caring, learning, and service provide a way to create a culture that enhances teamwork, readiness for change, community relationships, and professional practice. Shaping culture takes time, sometimes years. Nursing administration graduate students can gain a sense of understanding of the deep commitment and time required for changing culture, the elements of a positive culture, and the challenges and benefits that can result.


The Chief Nursing Officer and the External World

Tremendous emphasis is placed on the internal role of the nurse executive, but the external role connects the nursing leader to individuals and organizations providing opportunities for influencing broader concerns within the profession and outside the profession, supporting further development of the profession, and networking for knowledge sharing, assistance, and collegiality. The levels of external involvement can branch from immediate community, to the professional community, to the healthcare community, to society. Each level can have a focus that is local, regional, state, national, or international. Integrating the external roles of nursing leaders into nursing administration curriculum provides a foundation for students to conceptualize their own involvement beyond institutional walls.


Other Concepts

Other nursing leadership concepts are artistically woven throughout the chapters. Performance improvement perspectives are covered effectively in chapter 2, Transforming Professional Practice Environments: The Magnet Recognition Program, and in chapter 19, Working With Regulatory and Accrediting Bodies. Nursing leadership interfacing and relationship building concepts are threaded throughout chapter 9, Communication and the Leader; chapter 10, Leadership and Creating Teams; chapter 17, Governing and Being Governed; and chapter 18, Creating Relationship and Working With Physicians and Service Leaders. It would have been helpful to have expanded this content to include consensus building, a challenge in today's diverse, multifaceted, interdisciplinary healthcare landscape.


A quick reference is included after the last chapter of the book, offering a concise overview of key theories and concepts for nursing leaders and managers. The concepts are arranged alphabetically summarizing core elements.


The authors provide an engaging, advanced insight into nursing leadership theory, concepts, and practical applicability. The writing style prompts the readers to relate, compare, and discriminate knowledge from various concepts, synthesizing theory with current literature. Interpreting and analyzing using the segments at the end of each chapter formulate advanced understanding of the content for the nursing administration student.


The title, Beyond Leading and Managing: Nursing Administration for the Future, is misleading in that the content and construction are for developing future nursing leaders, but very applicable and relevant for nursing administrators today. Experienced nursing leaders will find this book a comprehensive, credible compilation of their practice. Novice nursing leaders and graduate nursing administration students will discover a deeper understanding of what a nursing manager and leadership role entails, beyond skill development to achieving mutual organizational and professional goals.




1. Yoder-Wise PS, Kowalski KE. Beyond Leading and Managing: Nursing Administration for the Future. Philadelphia, PA: Mosby, Inc; 2006. [Context Link]