1. Leadership requires personal mastery – Nurses demonstrate leadership when they show competence and mastery in the tasks they perform. Nurses are deemed competent by means of a license to practice nursing (NLN 2010).
2. Leadership is about values – The national League for Nursing teaches us the five essential core values of nursing are caring, integrity, diversity, and excellence (NLN).
3. Leadership is about service – Nursing is about service. Every act and service they do is to serve those around them. “They take responsibility for knowing every detail about each of their patients and are the voice of hope. Nurses are selfless in their dedication to their patients” (Mazer, 2016).
4. Leadership is about people and relationships –Nursing is about caring for your patients and those around you. It is an environment of caring. “Caring is a feeling and exhibiting concern and empathy for others; showing or having compassion” (The Free Dictionary, 2015).
5. Leadership is contextual
“Many nursing decision-making theorists proclaim the importance of contextual elements, also commonly known as domain-specific knowledge structures” (Crow, Chase, and Lamond, 1995).
6. Leadership is about the management of meaning – Nurses must prioritize the meaning of activities and tasks and use them in their nursing practice.
7. Leadership is about balance – Nurses must balance being understanding and being harsh in leadership positions. They must use judgment when dealing with conflict.
8. Leadership is about continuous learning and improvement – Nurses are encouraged to engage in concurrent education even after getting their licenses. They are encouraged to learn from their mistakes and to improve to become better nurses.
9. Leadership is about effective decision making – “Clinical judgment and decision–making is a required component of professional nursing. Expert nurses are known for their efficient and intuitive decision–making processes”(Muntean 2012).
10. Leadership is a political process – “Nurses’ policy influence is nurses’ ability in influencing decisions and affairs related to health through political knowledge, effective communication, and collaboration with other members of the health team, which results in the improvement of nurses’ job environment and increases patient outcomes”(Iran J Nurs Mid (Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2014; 19(5): 536)
11. Leadership is about modeling – Nursing is about forming models and theories about evidence-based nursing.
12. Leadership is about integrity – “A culture of integrity is evident when organizational principles of open communication, ethical decision-making, and humility are encouraged, expected, and demonstrated consistently. Not only is doing the right thing simply how we do business, but our actions reveal our commitment to truth telling and to how we always see ourselves from the perspective of others in a larger community” (NLN).