5 The difference you make


5 The difference you make

A key function of managing units is managing the finances.

Effective budget management results from a truly holistic view of the service you provide.  Given that, you need to be at the table for without you there, the budget will not reflect reality.  Don’t give this power away.  You are critical to success.

Despite this, there are still many nurse unit managers out there who are not taking responsibility for managing their unit’s resources. They are simply given their budgets by the Finance people and told to manage within them.  Some are not even given their budgets!!! Imagine how healthy your own finances would be if you simply had no idea how much money you had, and just spent on whatever you felt like in the moments?

Nurse Unit Managers have influence over millions of dollars – whether they are doing this deliberately or not.  You must be at the table.  You have insights that no-one else could possibly have – with this there are opportunities.

You are unlikely to be successful in requesting more or changing what you have if you don’t know the language.  You need to understand the big picture.

How do you know if you need more staff?


  • What involvement do you currently have in your budget?
  • I have no involvement at all
  • I am just told what my budget is and expected to stay within it.
  • I am asked if it looks realistic before it is finalised.
  • I am part of the team that builds it and discuss the assumptions and plans that will affect it.  And I am expected to review and report on it regularly.
  • Why do you think lies underneath you level of involvement?



Not recently active