Finding yourself for the first time in a leadership role with others reporting to you and counting on you to have the answers can be intimidating. If this is you and you find yourself in the throes of a new managerial role, we’ve got some tips for you.
We asked a seasoned RT manager for her tips and tricks to help you bridge the gap from RT to RT manager.
Margie Pierce MS, RRT, CPFT, administrative director of respiratory care and pulmonary diagnostics, shares her tips for new managers—
Prepare and Plan
I recommend that new managers take the time to prepare a plan in advance for their onboarding. One of the most important parts of that plan is to build relationships outside of the department very early during the onboarding process.
The new leader (in collaboration with their boss) should identify the organization’s key stakeholders and set up short introductory meetings (no more than 30 minutes) with the stakeholders. Examples of key stakeholders are medical directors, nurse managers, CNO, CFO, and COO.
The new leader should ask guiding questions during the introductory meeting such as: What are the most successful traits of a leader in this organization? What are the biggest challenges the organization is facing? If you were me, what would you focus on? What are some opportunities for my growth that you can recommend? Who would you suggest I rely on as a potential mentor?
Regarding the respiratory care department, the first order of business is to establish trust. Identify opportunities and focus on translating them into wins while engaging staff in the process. Build personal credibility immediately. Your earliest actions will influence people’s perception of you. You need to start strong and that is achievable by being prepared with a plan for your onboarding.
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