Developing and Sustaining Nursing Leadership in the Preceptor Role

Engaging Head-Hands-Heart



In current health care environments, nurse preceptors are often asked to assume frontline leadership roles without needed leadership competencies and skills to reflect the organizations’ nursing imperatives.


The Preceptor Development Workshop Program honors lived experiences and expertise of each preceptor. It creating a safe learning environment, promotes values, role models caring, respect, authentic presence, trust, connection, and self-care that complement our mission, vision, and values. For Nursing Professional Development Specialists to respond to this call for action, it is imperative to devote educational resources to cultivate and develop effective leadership behaviors at all levels, reinforcing a caring relationship with preceptors and preceptees.



The Preceptor Development Workshop’s goal is to blend the theoretical approaches of Patricia Benner and Jean Watson while congruently representing the organization’s professional practice model.  The marrying of these two theories results in a transformational learning environment that engages preceptors in mutual dialogue, deep reflection, and mindful attention. Use of teaching strategies such as the Five-Minute Preceptor Model and the Preceptor Hand Off Tool  guide the preceptors in individualizing the roles of teacher, assessor, motivator and communicator to the needs of the preceptee.



Emphasis on communication styles, learning styles and how to provide effective feedback provides learners a variety of tools to utilize depending on the needs and learning style of the preceptee. Effective leadership skills and behaviors such as relationship management, mindful communication, conflict resolution, team building, change management, and self-leadership are woven into workshop curriculum to help reinforce participants’ own abilities and how to best relate to the preceptee, resulting in nurturing their growth and experience during their role transition.


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This humanistic learning delivery model provides an innovative departure from traditional education models, allowing room for authentic dialogue, reflection and practice integration. When asked ‘what did you learn during this course that you will be able to apply in your work environment, one learner stated

“Ways to communicate constructive feedback for various situations/personalities, the importance of empathy when being a preceptor for a new hire or new grad nurse. Also, found that recognizing learning styles will be helpful to ensure that both the preceptor and preceptee will have a successful experience together.” -SHC RN, August 2017

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Contributed by:

Gisso Oreo, MSN, RN-BC, Caritas Coach

300 Pasteur Dr
Palo Alto, 94304​

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©2017 Stanford Nursing Annual Report

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