Ashley Kimmel, BSN, RN, is this month’s Nursing Experience Program Partner Spotlight! Ashley currently works as the Manager of Clinical Education and Nursing Excellence, as well as Nurse Residency Program Coordinator at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. Starting as a bedside nurse, nobody knows better than Ashley how important versatility, growth, and leadership is in the nursing profession. To see how Ashley utilizes NEP to meet her own growth goals as a leader, as well as meet organizational goals for her team, read her interview below!
How long have you been in nursing, and what are your favorite parts about it?
I have been a nurse for 10 years and I love how versatile the role is. I started my nursing career at a large organization in the state of Florida as a bedside nurse on a surgical progressive care unit caring for specialty surgical patients preoperative and postoperative. From there, I advanced to become a nursing preceptor, mentor, charge nurse, and assistant nurse manager. Recently I moved to the state of California and am now a part of the USC Verdugo Hills Hospital Organization as the Manager of Clinical Education and Nursing Excellence. One of my favorite parts about nursing is connecting with diverse individuals including patients, families, and colleagues. I enjoy empowering others to learn about healthcare and being curious to foster innovation within our profession. Nursing promotes continual personal and professional growth. In the nursing profession, there is always something new to learn as evidence-based practice and technology propel us into the future.
What are your favorite parts of leading a team of nurses?
As a nurse leader in nursing education, I have the unique opportunity to establish a positive and supportive environment where clinical practice can thrive leading novice nurses through their transition into practice and developing experienced nurses within our organization. One of my favorite parts is observing our team members display their confidence and compassion in extending patient care. It is joyous to see the moment when clinical skill and competence collide with compassion. When this occurs our team members are able to not only treat diagnoses appropriately but connect with patients and families to provide optimal holistic care.
Could you tell us about a time that a tip you learned came in handy, with a patient or colleague, for example?
In the Practicing Excellence Module Demonstrate Heart: Be Open Tip #4: Celebrating Feedback, we learned the importance of giving and receiving feedback. Feedback helps our teams gain rapport, trust, and identify opportunities for learning leading to pathways of improvement. I have witnessed our leaders seeking out feedback from our teams to improve our processes to better serve our patients. Feedback is welcomed on a daily basis during formal and informal moments of communication. Our leaders work with their teams to ask, “What is one thing I can do to best help you?” and “What ideas do you have that can help promote positive change?” Our leadership team members and colleagues are aligned through unit-based councils to drive positive transitions in healthcare practice.
What new skills are you looking forward to developing?
I am looking forward to learning how to best identify and amplify the strengths of our team members to lead us to greater success.
In what ways have you seen your colleagues/ team implement tips into their work?
The tips shared complimented our organization’s mission, vision, values, and service standards to provide exceptional care to our community. My colleagues have applied specific aspects of these tips to their daily practice. During handoff reports and leadership rounds, I have observed our team members manage up the best qualities of each individual and promote teamwork to ensure safety and quality care reach our patients.
What did you look forward to most after each week’s new tip?
The tips presented were clear and succinct. They provided real-life examples that were easily translated into our day-to-day practice. I appreciate a good challenge to promote professional growth and development, so I looked forward to following the challenges provided in the tips to promote my growth on the individual topic reviewed each week. The examples and challenges helped to instill confidence in my application of the learning objectives and our team has worked together to share insights about each tip during our Practicing Excellence journey.
Thank you Ashley for sharing your story with us! We are excited to see what you accomplish in the future with the Nursing Experience Program.
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Practicing Excellence builds skills to drive outcomes in well-being, patient experience, and leadership effectiveness. Built for busy clinicians, our micro-learning solution delivers short, evidence-derived, video-based coaching to clinicians, leaders, and teams through our mobile app. We partner with some of the nations’ most prominent health systems and medical groups to deliver coordinated skill-building programs that provide measurable results. Learn more at practicingexcellence.com.