Friday, July 13, 2007
This presentation is part of : Issues in Nursing Administration
Roads to Leadership: Discovering the Maps
Karen S. Ward, PhD, RN, COI, School of Nursing, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN, USA and Karen L. Elberson, PhD, RN, School of Nursing, Uniformed Service University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA.
Learning Objective #1: List four key factors that guide or encourage individuals to aspire to seek/fill leadership positions
Learning Objective #2: Identify experiences/activities that leaders and potential leaders have in common

When the Sigma Theta Tau International Nominating Committee became the Leadership Succession Committee through a change in the society’s by-laws, the charge to committee members was expanded. The creation of a ballot that includes diverse, highly qualified, individuals remains the major goal. However, committee members determined that identifying characteristics and career paths of the society’s current leaders would be very beneficial in guiding new and untapped members to acquire experience and skill needed to effectively fill leadership positions. All committee members assisted in conducting in-depth interviews of current Sigma Theta Tau International Board Members to discover what factors led them to their position in the society. Recorded interviews were analyzed and certain themes were evidenced. Skills needed for their current leadership roles were ones that had been developed over a period of time. All participants reported a history of service in many capacities. Although they chose different roads to their positions, all had followed a map. For some the map was drawn in great detail very early in their career; for others, the map was much sketchier. Exploring and using information from these interviews can assist individuals to develop into the types of leaders sought by Sigma Theta Tau International and the quest for excellence and diversity on the Board can be met. This session will provide these results and give participants an opportunity to dialogue about personal leadership goals through international collaboration.