Abstract

Feelings of empowerment in nursing staff can contribute to increased job satisfaction, improved quality of care and a higher retention rate within healthcare organizations. Nursing is critical at healthcare organizations, with direct and significant impact on the quality of care provided; yet, nurses often feel undervalued for the work they do. The strength-based approach of appreciative inquiry is one way to engage individuals in finding collective value through the identification of successes, enabling the creation of a shared vision and strategy for the future.

This paper describes the creation of a "movement" informed by the process of appreciative inquiry to engage and empower nurses at a large urban mental health and addictions teaching hospital. The approach facilitated a broad discussion among various stakeholders at the hospital about nursing's unique contributions and led to the development of a vision and strategy for an engaged and invigorated nursing force. The process and initial outcomes of the movement are described.