Nursing in Practice March/April 2019 (issue 107) - Page 31

31 Key features of social movements Everybody’s business Passion Proactive Spread through the health community Energising Social movements Multi- disciplinary Input from staff Constant Practical Gathering pace a profession and the nursing voice. June uses her voice to ‘disagree well’ and is an amazing role model to show how nurses can have a political voice and remain professional within social media spaces. These are just a few of the nurses using social media to lead. While they may not necessarily be nurse leaders in the traditional sense, each is making an impact. One of the amazing things about all of them is that they are visible and approachable. Each of them will respond to tweets sent to them and share information, and each has a clear vision for nursing and works across hierarchies to achieve it. There is a marked difference between traditional leadership and leadership in social media. A study looked at leadership in a variety of networks, and found that in managed networks – such as those associated with service delivery – leadership is hierarchical and, conversely in social media networks there is not one leader, but various informal leaders. 1 Online leadership is not necessarily defi ned by the number of followers you have, but by the value and vision that you present and how you present it. This makes it easy to get involved; by jumping in and engaging with nurses who are leading in social media spaces, nurses can be aware of national and even international work and projects. However, it’s worth noting that as with any leadership role, being a digital leader takes courage, commitment and competence, especially to engage with the nurses already leading. References 1 Malby B, Mervyn K. Summary of the literature to inform the Health Foundation questions. Leeds: Centre for Innovation in Health Management; University of Leeds 2012 2 Bibby J, Bevan H. Carter E et al. The power of one the power of many. NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement 2009 Personal responsibility (passing on the bug!) There also needs to be consideration given to social movements. The fi gure above shows a mind map that explores key features of successful social movements that have forced change at higher levels. 2 Nurses who are leading in social media spaces not only need to be able to keep abreast of the complexity of innovation, but also to be aware of social movements and harness their power when required. Someone once told me that all nurses are leaders and sometimes we just have to have the courage to rise to the challenge. But we also need to think differently about leadership in nursing. We need to ditch the superhero capes and to see it as getting along with people and getting on with things, using leadership to innovate and create social movements. Social media is helping nurses to achieve this. The EGM that took place last year at the Royal College of Nursing is a prime example. The petition that forced the EGM to occur was started on and shared across Twitter and Facebook. It gained the required 1,000 signatures in a matter of days, and ultimately led to the change many members were seeking after the pay deal settlement. Teresa Chinn is a nurse and social media consultant who advises on online professional community development. She also runs the WeNurses community March/April 2019 nursinginpractice.com