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The DNP Project: Leading Change


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PICOT Question:

In adult oncology patients at an infusion Center at Queens Hospital Center, does the implementation of a music therapy program compared to current practice impact pain scores during chemotherapy over 8-10 weeks?

Please discuss your leadership skills with both interprofessional and inter-professional teams to support changes in nursing, and healthcare, at your place of employment. How have you used those skills as the leader and change agent for your DNP Project? 

In the era of healthcare reform, there is high demand for system redesign by implementing QI projects to improve health outcomes (Hoyle & Johnson, 2015). The DNP curriculum prepares the nursing scholar in system leadership, scientific underpinning, advanced clinical practice, analytical methods, and interprofessional collaboration. This intense education and training prepare the nurse leader to serve as a change agent and fill the gap between evidence and practice ( Lackey, S., 2017). As innovation in healthcare is inevitable, nurse leaders must take the initiative and active engagement and are responsible for creating a changing culture. So nurse leaders should develop special innovation leadership skills in addition to the essential competencies of a leader. Innovation leaders should acquire an array of unique competencies in communication, creating a positive work culture in favor of change projects, trust development, and interdisciplinary collaboration ( Weatherford et al., 2018).

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 I believe I possess an open attitude to change, willing to think differently about how to improve outcomes for patients. I also value my perseverance in getting into details and reaching out to many potential resources to obtain expert advice. I developed communication and networking skills and taught how to keep the enthusiasm and momentum among the stakeholders. This helped me to get the needed support at the practicum site. I also realized how important it is to involve the perspectives of stakeholders and staff before finalizing the plans. I experienced episodes of immense happiness and excitement and felt discouraged and confused during the initial stages of project planning. But I consistently worked to remove the barriers and maintained optimism. Through close communication and collaboration with the involved stakeholders, I developed a sense of trust and created a supportive work environment at the site.

What leadership skills do you need to develop? Share your professional identity formation/role development plan to attain these skills.

I felt the need to develop skills and confidence in public speaking. Another important skill I am attempting to establish is advocacy skills and the ability to make risky decisions. I plan to attend seminars or training sessions for public speaking and advocacy. Accepting a challenging leadership position will be an excellent example of making risky decisions!

Provide your instructor and student colleagues with an update on your implementation plans for your DNP Project. Share any successes, challenges, or barriers you experienced this week

 My preceptor was always available to respond to my questions, concerns, and clarifications. The preceptor is a role model to me by conducting many meetings, advocating for nurse practitioners during board meetings, arranging empowering sessions for NPs, and acting as a liaison between nurse practitioners and union delegates. The preceptor suggested ways to manage the workload and use resources effectively.

 The project implementation plan is actively progressing, regularly communicating with the stakeholders and staff and preparing the tools and other documents needed for the project. I foresee some personal barriers that may bring tremendous stress to the coursework. I am so grateful for our professor’s immense support and kind understanding. 


Hoyle, & Johnson, G. (2015). Building skills in organizational and systems changes: A DNP-FNP clinical curriculum. The Nurse Practitioner, 40(4), 14–23. 

https://doi.org/10.1097/01.NPR.0000461948.38539.fc (Links to an external site.)

Lackey.S., (2017). DNP Preparation in Supporting Critical Skills for Magnet® Program Directors. The Journal of Nursing Administration, 47(6), 303–304. 

https://doi.org/10.1097/NNA.0000000000000484 (Links to an external site.)

Weatherford, B., Bower, K., & Vitello-Cicciu, J. (2018). The CNO and leading Innovation: Competencies for the future. Nursing administration quarterly, 42(1), 76–82. https://doi.org/10.1097/NAQ.0000000000000263


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