The holistic leadership model and the nurse unit manager: assessing requisite leadership competencies in the Rwandan context

  • Aphrodis Gustave Tuyishime
  • William Rosa
Keywords: Nurse, nursing practice, leadership, management, caring, competencies, holistic nursing


Effective leadership is arguably one of the most relevant indicators of a profession’s advancement or lack thereof. The purpose of this article is to share the authors’ personal views on the leadership competencies necessary for the nurse unit manager transitioning into the role for the first time. To identify these leadership requisites, the literature was searched to identify key competencies and characteristics of effective nurse leaders across disciplines and specialties, both globally and unique to the African and Rwandan contexts. In the ever-changing healthcare scenario in Rwanda, the efforts and accomplishments of the Human Resources for Health (HRH) Program are described as just one catalyst for the increased numbers of new nurse unit managers. Through analysis of the literature in conjunction with personal experience, the authors recommend the Holistic Leadership Model rooted in an ethic of caring as a tool for new nurse unit managers to become effective leaders and agents of meaningful change.

Keywords: Nurse; nursing practice; leadership; management; caring; competencies; holistic nursing


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 2305-2678