I would like to thank Megan O'Brien, RN for her outstanding leadership during such an uncertain time. Megan truly embodies what it means to be an exemplary leader. Her compassion and empathy create an environment where staff feel safe and supported. Hers is the first door folks knock on when they need advice or a sympathetic ear. Whether it's patient-related or personal, Megan is available for all our staff, not just nurses. Her capacity for kindness is unmatched and it shows how much the staff value her leadership.
Her clinical leadership has been exceptional during COVID. As an essential service, ambulatory OB/GYN never stopped seeing patients. She was critical in ensuring that patients were appropriately screened and staff had access to proper PPE in order to keep staff and patients safe while still accessing the crucial care that they needed. She showed exceptional flexibility in working with nurses who dealt with issues from childcare to pre-existing medical conditions to ensure that appropriate staffing was maintained as well as helping them get the support that they needed.
Ever the team player, she was instrumental in operationalizing an at-home blood pressure monitoring system for our high-risk OB patients who were not able to come to the clinic during the COVID surge. As a nursing leader, Megan worked together with interdisciplinary teams across multiple areas of the hospital to help patients get the care that they needed right at home. She seamlessly created a workflow for an RN to manage the portal remotely as well as help create algorithms to clearly identify when patients needed to come to the clinic for a visit.
There is a never-ending list of examples that I could provide to show just how valued Megan is by her staff and our department. So, thank you, Megan! It has taken a lot of thought to adequately put on paper why Megan is a DAISY Nurse Leader. That is because I had trouble finding words powerful enough to describe my reasons for this nomination.
I have been Megan’s colleague and peer and now one of her staff nurses for at least 8 years. From the day I met her up until now, she hasn’t changed a bit. I feel that’s important to note because I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been for her to rise from staff nurse to managing the same nurses with whom she’s worked as a colleague, with all of our different personalities, work habits, quirks, and challenges. However, when she was approached with the suggestion to apply for the Nurse Manager position, she enthusiastically accepted. And she’s become one of the most amazing managers that I’ve had the pleasure of working with over my 39 years as a nurse.
Even without the life changing pandemic we’ve worked through, I would be nominating Megan. The pandemic only illustrates more powerfully how hard Megan works to keep her unit and her staff afloat.
Cheerful attitude at all times has not wavered. She has worked many 6 day weeks, not expecting her staff to do the same. Her hours at work don’t seem to have a start and finish; she seems to be available all the time!
Though her flexibility and presence that I mentioned above are probably not unusual for any manager during this unique time, Megan hasn’t lost sight of the importance of work/life balance for her staff. She strives to be responsive to all of us whenever possible, and it always seems to be possible. She will go out of her way to try to accommodate requests, keeping in mind the safety of her staff and the unit. To that point, she also works to be fair; so if a request makes the workplace unbalanced or unsafe she will diplomatically explain why the request isn’t possible to grant. She might even suggest an alternative resolution.
I feel it’s also important to mention that Megan does not micromanage her staff. She seems to trust us to take initiative and work out issues or difficulties that arise, while at the same time being clear that she is available if needed. This in no way means that she is uninterested. It’s an illustration of how she supports the growth, cohesiveness, and teamwork within our unit.
With regard to the challenges of her staff, we have had many life-altering changes in our personal lives, unrelated to COVID, and Megan has had to learn along with us, how to accept the challenges and how to support us during very difficult times. She has empathized with us and shown she cares about us and even cried with us, illustrating her continued compassion as a “nurse” in addition to her “manager” role.
Megan is a hands-on leader when needed, an advocate for us as nurses by voicing her awareness and appreciation about the work we do. She’s a kind and caring person who remembers important things about us as individuals and always takes a minute to check in with us as people.
In my humble opinion, Megan O’Brien, RN will go far in this world and wherever she is, she will be a true asset to the people with whom she works.
Megan is an exceptional Nurse Manager, and an extraordinary leader who is always so professional, and always so busy taking care of patient, and providing meaningful information, especially when it comes to safety. She is a very good listener and she understands the dynamic of the Clinic and people as a whole. Love her, she is awesome.