A Tool to Identify Key Behaviors and Attributes of High-Performing Nurses

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

The purpose of this project was to identify key behaviors and attributes that distinguish high-performing nurses to develop a tool for employment screening, staff development, and performance management.

BACKGROUND

Selecting nurses who will complement an organization's mission and philosophy is a key step toward achieving quality and safety goals, ensuring patient and family satisfaction, and improving retention rates and overall costs.

METHODS

Focus group methodology was used to determine perceptions of high-performing nurses' behaviors and attributes. Content analysis of the meeting transcripts was performed to aggregate data into categories and items.

RESULTS

Following several phases of testing with various groups, a 16-item scale has been developed.

CONCLUSIONS

This tool has received positive ratings from nurse managers currently using it to interview nurse applicants who best “fit” into the organization's nursing culture. Results will be monitored over time including hiring decisions, preceptor ratings, and retention rates.

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