Factors influencing nurses’ willingness to lead

Sulaiman D. Al Sabei*, Amy M. Ross, Christopher S. Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To identify factors influencing nurses’ willingness to lead. Background: Given the ageing workforce and the projected retirement of nurse leaders, there is a concern about nursing leadership shortages in the next decade. Several studies have shown that nurses are not interested in pursuing leadership positions, but studies investigating nurses’ willingness to lead and related predictors remain limited. Methods: A workforce survey of 1,201 direct-care nurses was conducted in Oregon. Logistic regression modelling was used to identify factors influencing the likelihood of nurses’ willingness to lead. Results: Fifty-three percent of nurses were willing to pursue leadership roles. Years of experience, job burnout, the perception of the work environment, adequacy of leadership preparation, and the amount of salary and compensation were significant predictors of nurses’ willingness to lead. Conclusion: Increasing nurses’ participation in hospital affairs and providing adequate leadership preparation, parts of the work environment, prior to engaging them in leadership roles is recommended to improve their attitudes about leading. Implications for Nursing Management: Recruitment of future nursing leaders should not be based solely on demographics such as age and gender. Rather, recruiters should focus on creating more favourable work environments in which to lead.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-285
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nursing Management
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019


  • leadership
  • motivation
  • nursing
  • retention
  • work environment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management


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