Nursing and values‐based leadership: A literature review

Alison James, Clare Bennett, Denise Blanchard, David Stanley

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To explore literature that supports an understanding of values‐based leadership in nursing.
Background: Understanding values‐based leadership in nursing means understanding several leadership theories such as authentic, servant and congruent leadership.
Evaluation: Electronic databases were systematically searched to locate studies with the terms values‐based, authentic, servant and congruent leadership. The literature was assessed with the Joanna Briggs Institute Critical Appraisal Tools and the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and meta‐analysis approach and a thematic analysis.
Key Issues: Existing evidence focuses on specific perspectives within three dominant leadership approaches under the umbrella of values‐based leadership: authentic, servant and congruent leadership. Limited literature suggests that values‐based leadership can support professional collaboration, enhanced trust and voice for nurses, support for staff well‐being, empowerment, job satisfaction, patient‐focused outcomes and quality care.
Conclusions: A dearth of empirical literature concerning values‐based leadership and nursing exists. Evidence suggests that authentic, servant and congruent leadership correlate with values‐based leadership theories and core nursing values.
Implications for Nursing Management: Nurse managers should recognize the potential benefits of a values‐based leadership approach for staff well‐being, enhanced professional collaboration and the nurses voice, improved insight into clinical leadership attributes and improvements in quality patient care.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)916-930
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Nursing Management
Issue number5
Early online date23 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021


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