NRS 451 Benchmark – Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management

Sample Answer for NRS 451 Benchmark – Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management Included After Question

Assessment Description

In this assignment, you will be writing a 1,000-1,250 word paper describing the differing approaches of nursing leaders and managers to issues in practice. To complete this assignment, do the following:

  1. Select an issue from the following list: bullying, unit closers and restructuring, floating, nurse turnover, nurse staffing ratios, use of contract employees (i.e., registry and travel nurses), or magnet designation.
  2. Describe the selected issue. Discuss how it impacts quality of care and patient safety in the setting in which it occurs.
  3. Discuss how professional standards of practice should be demonstrated in this situation to help rectify the issue or maintain professional conduct.
  4. Explain the differing roles of nursing leaders and nursing managers in this instance and discuss the different approaches they take to address the selected issue and promote patient safety and quality care. Support your rationale by using the theories, principles, skills, and roles of the leader versus manager described in your readings.
  5. Discuss what additional aspects managers and leaders would need to initiate in order to ensure professionalism throughout diverse health care settings while addressing the selected issue.
  6. Describe a leadership style that would best address the chosen issue. Explain why this style could be successful in this setting.

Use at least three peer-reviewed journal articles other than those presented in your text or provided in the course.

Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.

This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion. 

You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite. A link to the LopesWrite technical support articles is located in Class Resources if you need assistance. 

This benchmark assignment assesses the following programmatic competencies:


1.1:       Exemplify professionalism in diverse health care settings.

1.3:       Exercise professional nursing leadership and management roles in the promotion of patient safety and quality care.

3.4:       Demonstrate professional standards of practice.

A Sample Answer For the Assignment: NRS 451 Benchmark – Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management

Title:  NRS 451 Benchmark – Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management

Nurse Staffing Ratios

Nurse staffing ratio is one of the major issues in the healthcare system. Most healthcare institutions are always concerned with the number of healthcare professionals who can give adequate and quality services to the patients. Also, patients are always attracted to the healthcare settings where there are enough nurse-to-patient ratios. The more the number of nurses, the higher the likelihood of receiving effective and efficient care from a healthcare institution. One of the critical topics discussed in the field of nursing is the increase in nurse-to-patient ratios. Generally, for the most healthcare institutions, nurse are asked to care for more patients at a given time; this happens due to the lack of enough number of nurses as well as the high costs of employing more nurses for a given healthcare institution (Aiken et al., 2015). Also, a high number of patients for one nurse is attributed to the increase in the number of patients seeking medical services from various hospitals and healthcare institutions. When nurses are assigned to fewer patients to care for at a time, there is always higher level of job satisfaction.

Nurse staffing ratio often impacts the quality of care and patient safety. With the appropriate number of nurses, there is always higher likelihood of attaining effective patient care leading to quality outcome. Healthcare institutions that adhere to the correct nurse to patient rations often tend to achieve the highest quality healthcare outcome. On the other hand, clinical or healthcare settings with less nurse to patient ratio often deliver low quality healthcare, a scenario that negatively impacts the health and wellbeing of the people within the community. Where there is huge number of patients compared to the number of nurses or healthcare professionals, the treatment processes are often compromised as nurses become overwhelm leading to low quality health outcome. Also, with the few number of nurses, there is always high possibility of nurse burnout. All these factors interfere with effective health outcome.    

How Professional Standards of Practice Should Be Demonstrated In This Situation to Help Rectify the Issue

Professional standards should always be observed in every treatment process. In every healthcare institution, healthcare professionals are required adhere to the required professional standards. Even though some healthcare institutions have low nurse-to-patient ratios, healthcare professionals are required to adhere to the professional standards to ensures that they deliver quality healthcare. Nurses need to stick to their commitment to serve; this is one of the professional standards required that leads to problems with the nurse staffing ratios. Serving patients irrespective of their number will overcome the problems that often arise as a result of low nurse-to-patient ratios (Griffiths et al., 2018). For instance, adherence to the quality standards in healthcare provision will ensure that there are effective treatment outcomes. The professional standards of practice in nursing also stipulate that the right number of patients should be assigned to one nurse so as to ensure that there is delivery of the required services at the right time. Adherence to ethical practices will also ensure that nurses perform their roles as required amidst the problems associated with the nurse staffing ratios. One of the professional roles of a nurse is to ensure that patients get the right care and to ensure effective or quality health outcomes. The application of all the above professional standards of practice would help in rectifying the issues or problems associated with the nurse staffing ratios.  

Roles of Nursing Leaders and Nursing Managers

Nurse leaders and nurse managers play critical roles in ensuring that nurses act professionally in line with healthcare’s required standards. Nurse leaders guides healthcare workers especially the nurses in undertaking their roles under different situations. Nurse managers are always responsible for supervising the nursing staff including nurses, clinical officers, doctors, physicians and other healthcare workers who ensure the safety and wellbeing of the patients (Branden & Sharts-Hopko, 2017). One of the principles that nursing leadership should portray in ensuring correct nurse staffing ratio is the commitment to excellence. To ensure excellence in the treatment process, nurse leaders ensure that nurses are committed to quality treatment processes irrespective of their numbers and the rate of flow of patients into the hospital. Adhering to the principle of excellence will ensure that nurses work to provide safety and quality care to all the patients.

NRS 451 Benchmark - Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management
NRS 451 Benchmark – Effective Approaches in Leadership and Management

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Nurse leaders should also possess leadership skills to be able to influence the operational processes geared towards achieving effective outcomes irrespective of the problems associated with the nurse staffing ratios. Nurse managers are always responsible for supervising nurse staff in clinical setting and in hospitals. Nurse managers also take part in overseeing patient care, make budgetary and management decision, set work schedules, make decision about personnel and coordinate meetings where decisions are made about the roles of healthcare workers (Branden & Sharts-Hopko, 2017). The key principle of nurse managers is building of a strong culture around the healthcare provision services. The above principle can therefore enhance the solution towards the problems associated with the nurse staffing ratios. 

Additional Aspects Managers and Leaders Would Need

Nursing managers and leaders would need to initiate different management or operational processes to ensure the provision of solution to the issues associated with the nurse staffing ratio. Some of the additional aspects or activities in the nursing practices that managers and leaders would need to initiate include regulation of the number of patients during admission; the practice will ensure that nurses and other healthcare professionals do not experience burnout or excessive work that may lead to low quality outcomes (Driscoll et al., 2018). Another aspect of treatment that managers and nurse leaders need to initiate include adherence to the evidence-based practices whereby nurses are able to work in line with the patient’s demands to ensure effective or quality healthcare outcome. To ensure high level of professionalism there is a need for the management and nurse leadership to ensure continuous training processes so as nurses can observe professional practices in taking care of patients.  The above will also reduce problems associated with low nurse-to-patient ratio (Driscoll et al., 2018). Finally, nurse managers and leaders need to ensure that all healthcare professionals adhere to the ethical requirements, which is one aspect of professionalism required in the healthcare practices.  

Leadership Style That Would Best Address the Nurse Staffing Ratio

Democratic leadership style would best address the issue of nurse staffing ratio. With this form of leadership, there is a high possibility that all the staff members will contribute towards achieving best practices in ensuring that there is quality outcome in the healthcare delivery processes. Also, the democratic leadership style would ensure that the medical staff members including nurses adhere to high levels of professionalism when dealing with patients. With the democratic leadership style, finding a solution to the problems associated with the nurse staffing ratio is easier as each of the member will be able to communicate the challenges they face as a result of the increasing number of patients in the healthcare settings. 


Aiken, L. H., Sloane, D. M., Bruyneel, L., Van den Heede, K., Griffiths, P., Busse, R., … & McHugh, M. D. (2015). Nurse staffing and education and hospital mortality in nine European countries: a retrospective observational study. The lancet383(9931), 1824-1830.

Branden, P. S., & Sharts-Hopko, N. C. (2017). Growing clinical and academic nursing leaders: Building the pipeline. Nursing Administration Quarterly, 41(3), 258-265.

Driscoll, A., Grant, M. J., Carroll, D., Dalton, S., Deaton, C., Jones, I., … & Astin, F. (2018). The effect of nurse-to-patient ratios on nurse-sensitive patient outcomes in acute specialist units: a systematic review and meta-analysis. European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing17(1), 6-22.

Griffiths, P., Recio‐Saucedo, A., Dall’Ora, C., Briggs, J., Maruotti, A., Meredith, P., … & Missed Care Study Group. (2018). The association between nurse staffing and omissions in nursing care: a systematic review. Journal of advanced nursing74(7), 1474-1487.