The purpose of this research was to identify the profile of an excellent nurse manager who can lead effective health care teams. Leadership attributes and competencies that characterize an excellent nurse manager and tools to identify them are lacking in the literature but are required to efficiently and effectively address the growing shortage of registered nurses (RNs) in health care team leadership roles and the critical linkage of these roles to patient outcomes. A profile of an excellent nurse manager was developed on the basis of the responses of nurse managers across the United States who had been identified as excellent or competent by chief nurse executive assessment or/and the Nurse Manager Ability, Leadership, and Support of Nurses staff survey to the Kouzes and Posner Leadership Practices Inventory: Self Instrument. Statistically significant distinctions exist between nurse managers who are excellent and those who are competent as assessed by the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership, which together comprise the profile of an excellent nurse manager. The Kouzes and Posner Leadership Practices Inventory: Self Instrument can be used to identify, recruit, and develop RNs in the nurse manager role as excellent leaders of effective health care teams.