The Chief Nursing Officer Shared Leadership Model

Published:October 06, 2022DOI:


      We highlight the design, implementation, benefits, and challenges of an innovative shared nursing leadership model at the chief nursing officer (CNO) level. At St. John's Health, a 48-bed rural hospital in the Mountain West, 3 qualified, experienced clinical nursing directors were recruited to fill the CNO position. During the first 6 months, the CNOs solidified their leadership and communication styles, negotiated salary and benefits, transitioned into strategic thinking, became members of the administrative team, and maintained their specialty clinical directorships. St. John's Health retained strong nursing leadership talent and enhanced staff engagement, resulting in better staff wages and work–life balance, and continues to improve patient experience scores.
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      Susan K. Riesch, PhD, RN, FAAN, is Professor Emerita at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing in Madison, Wisconsin. She can be reached at [email protected] . Jennifer Chiappa, MSN, RN, is chief nursing officer, director primary care unit, and director inpatient rehabilitation facility, Naomi Floyd, MSN, RN, is chief nursing officer, director home health, and director case management, and Mary Ponce, MSN, MBA, RN, is chief nursing officer and director critical care services/trauma (emergency department) at St. John's Health in Jackson, Wyoming.