Nurses or midwives stepping up to the role of unit manager rarely receive managerial training. Yet their responsibilities are substantial. The challenges in managing a complement of busy staff, as well as being responsible for the clinical care of patients, can be daunting.
The ANMF (Vic Branch), in conjunction with the Nursing and Midwifery Health Program Victoria (NMHPV), is hosting a one-day seminar on 7 October to support nurse and midwife unit managers.
The ‘Your wellbeing and work – a special day for NUMs and MUMs’ will focus on self-care and management skills.
The seminar will emphasise the importance of looking after yourself so you can function effectively in an often-difficult role.
It will also provide strategies and tools to better equip nurses and midwives in their role as a manager. It will look at how to deal with interpersonal conflict in your team; bullying and harassment; having difficult conversations with staff; complaints and mediation processes; and how to address culture change in workplaces – critical skills for leaders in nursing and midwifery.
Speakers will also give you an overview of some legal concepts and health and safety concerns surrounding these complex issues. Through presentations and workshops, nurse and midwife unit managers will learn how they can contribute to a psychologically safe workplace for themselves and their team.
One of the key presenters will be Glenn Taylor, who has been chief executive of the NMPHV since 2008. The program is a nurse-led, nurse-run, independent and totally confidential support service for nurses, midwives and nursing and midwifery students.
Since 2006, NMHPV has assisted about 2000 nurses and midwives dealing with stress, mental health issues, substance addictions, family violence or other concerns.
‘The first part of the day is about empowering the participants to just look around and check in on their staff,’ Mr Taylor says, adding that the seminar will utilise the NMHPV Champion Program that promotes good health and the importance of seeking help early.
‘We’ll help the NUMs and MUMs to identify warning signs and how to approach somebody if they are concerned about them,’ he says. ‘We’ll give them examples of how their staff might present if they are struggling with alcohol or drug issues, mental health, depression or stress, or if they are perhaps having a hard time because of family violence.’
NUMs and MUMs will also develop a better understanding of investigation and mediation processes when complaints are made about adverse workplace behaviour, and participants will gain an overview of some of the legal concepts and health and safety issues.
Other speakers include representatives from Gordon Legal and the ANMF (Vic Branch) Occupational Health and Safety team and Mr Chris Hicks of CWH Mediation and Workplace Relations.