Leadership and Political Skill Preparedness of the Doctoral Prepared Nurse

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TITLE Leadership and Political Skill Preparedness of the Doctoral Prepared Nurse
RESEARCHER Wanda Montalvo
Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Columbia University
Unpublished doctoral dissertation: 2015

The purpose of this research was to analyze the mentoring elements provided in the mentoring relationship of doctoral prepared nurses and their correlation to leadership and political skill development.

The participants of this study were Jonas Nurse Scholars selected by schools for an academic scholarship between the years of 2008-2014 representing Cohorts I, II, and III of the program (N = 249; with 27 not received), and 115 participated in the study (52% response rate). The respondents were 75% PhD and 25% DNP (Doctor of Nursing Practice) nurses. The typical respondent was female (87%), Caucasian (70%), and between 35-44 years old (57%). Nearly half had 16 or more years of working experience, and two-thirds were employed full or part-time regardless of graduation status. Sixty-four percent had a mentor, and of these sixty-two percent reported being in an informal mentoring relationship. Respondents completed the LPI, the Mentoring Functions Survey (Fowler & O’Gorman, 2005), and Political Skill Inventory (Ferris, 2005).

Exposure to coaching as a mentoring function was significantly related to the leadership score obtained, while other mentoring functions (such as personal and emotional guidance and learning facilitation) were not. Additionally, there was no statistical significance between the LPI score of participants with mentors and those without. Regression analysis revealed that significantly related with total LPI scores were years of work experience, having graduated, and coaching scores; and accounted for nearly 34 percent of the variance. Non-significant factors in the equation were gender, age, ethnicity, military service, current employment status, work setting, type of program, self-described level of expertise, or participation in a leadership program.