Thursday, April 15, 2010

What an incredible three days...

Well, what an incredible three days at AONE 2010! The scientific knowledge, best practices, new evidence and leading innovations were all just amazing. It was wonderful to catch up with old friends and to make new ones all at the same time. So as we say our good byes and head home we leave knowing that we have gained new strategies and approaches to care delivery, team motivation and successful leadership. As the year continues to unfold and healthcare reform evolves we remain committed to our profession and the care of patients and their families. There is much ahead! I would like to thank AONE and the AONE board for all their hard work in making this year's event such as success! I look forward to seeing you all in San Diego next year and wish you much happiness and joy in the months ahead!


Gail Latimer
Siemens Medical Solutions

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, good night

Well the final sessions have ended, the exhibits are closed, the prizes have been won, and all traveling leaders have left Indianapolis. The end of the Annual Meeting was as informative as the first - ending with outstanding keynote speakers and enlightening sessions.

The combination of stories from the sessions I attended reaffirmed why I became a nurse. The story of Dr. Steve Robbins’ family tragedies and Vicky's story swept me into the lives of individuals I had never met. I could see their pain and view the road to recovery, and I knew that brilliant healthcare professionals were there to help.

I have come away from our meeting with many new ideas, friends, and colleagues. I look forward to implementing and share these ideas with my peers and colleagues at home - with the understanding that I have a network of thousands to lean on when I am presented with a barrier.

Thank you all for a great time.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN

More energized than ever!

After being here since Wednesday non-stop I am more energized than ever! Last evening I attended the PAC fundraiser event and heard John Foley, performance expert and former Lead Solo Pilot with the United States Navy Blue Angels. John captivated the packed room with stories, videos and presentations linking how we as Nursing leaders responsible for patient care, need to have as much precision in health care as the Blue Angels do flying jets! John took us into the sacred Blue Angels debriefing room. Linking the processes of the Blue Angels work into healthcare. It was then off to the Nurse Manager fellows reception. The energy of these up and coming leaders is so inspirational.

This morning I had the pleasure of introducing Dr Steven Robbins His presentation Unintentional Intolerance-Creating Inclusion in Health Care Settings had all of us laughing and also crying. His presentation will remain with me for a long time. I learned new thoughts and approaches to diversity.

The morning concluded with the AONE Business Meeting where Donna Herrin Immediate Past President and Pam Rudisill President spoke about AONEs past and current accomplishments . AONE CEO Pam Thompson introduced the AONE staff, without them we could not accomplish all the great work that AONE does.

Rob Rose
Bristol Hospital

photo courtesy of King Shots

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Hidden Benefit

Today was another great day at the AONE Annual Meeting; but I must be honest, there is a clandestine process afoot - something hidden.

If you have come to the Annual Meeting to attend a particular session to learn about a particular topic of interest - well you are in for a wonderful surprise! Yes, the Education Committee outperforms itself each year by providing a lineup of bright talent who deliver and share their knowledge. What you may not notice is the contagious processes outside the conference rooms.

I enjoy watching as leaders feverishly write notes during the sessions because I can see that each of them have had a spark. Ok, I know that happens with most sessions regardless of the venue; so where is the hidden benefit... wait for it...

What happens next is extraordinary. As we break between sessions or go off to the Exhibit Hall, leaders start mentoring leaders. Those notes - that spark - starts a discussion in the hallway and a network begins. Soon you will see business cards and smart phones coming out and the sharing path is opened.

The greatest attribute of Nurse Leaders is their ability to provide altruistic, open source information. I have never met some many talented individuals who are willing to freely share their information, their process, their story. This all takes place outside a structured learning process; it happens in hallways, over lunch, or at dinner. Open and honest leaders make up this great organization and I am so thankful that these meetings provide a knowledge outlet.

As you can see from the photo, tonight I was with Pam Thompson - one of the most influential leaders I have ever met. She hosts the Nurse Manager Fellowship reception every year; and each year I go back to visit with friends and colleagues. During this time we are afforded the time to mingle with past and present Nurse Manger Fellows, Board Members, and leaders. During this time we all share our sparks and our stories - a magnificent hidden benefit that you will never read in a meeting brochure.

So if you are reserved and only attend sessions, you MUST break out of your element and go to coffee, lunch, or dinner with other leaders and tell your stories! We will all benefit.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN
Follow the conversation on Twitter - use #aone with each tweet

What a Terrific Start to the Conference!

Siemens is so pleased to have once again sponsored the keynote address at AONE. The selection of David Whyte could not have been better and I hope you enjoyed his session as much as I did! He shared with us his tremendous insight and encouraged us to step back and reflect on aspects of our life and vocation - something we all need to do. What an inspirational start to the conference!

Coming from Pennsylvania and a graduate of Penn State University I really enjoyed Donna Haven's session this afternoon on 'Promote Desired Outcomes'. It was wonderful to learn about support for her work from many communities know well. Donna's research provides leadership with valuable information about programs that lead to excellent professional practice and patient care! Very promising and much can be learned from the work of her group.

As last evening came to an end I was honored to attend a reception for our international colleagues in support of the newly established AONE International Institute. It was wonderful to connect with our international nursing colleagues and it is so exciting to be a part of this exciting program looking to connect AONE's programs with our international partners promoting education and development of nursing leaders. We applaud Gladys Mouro, from the University of Beirut, for her vision and willingness to collaborate with nursing leaders in the middle east to promote the mission of AONE.

It was a tremendous day and I am looking forward to another just as exciting day today!

Gail Latimer
Siemens Medical Solutions, USA

Saturday, April 10, 2010

AONE Concurrent Session Update

This afternoon I attended several great sessions presented by extraordinary leaders. I love listening to the stories of leaders and how they are overcoming issues that each of us face.

One of the sessions I would like to highlight was the session titled: Design and Implementation of an Interdisciplinary Shared Governance Model. Why am I teasing out just this one session? One of the presenters was Amy Brown, MS, RN, NE-BC; a fellow 2008 Nurse Manager Fellow alumna.

It was great to see how Amy and Vanita (pictured above) presented a topic that was noticeably near to their core. I really enjoy seeing how each of the Nurse Manager Fellows continue to branch out and lead in different ways. All sessions were a great learning experience. I can't wait for tomorrow.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN
Follow the conversation on Twitter - use #aone with each tweet

Rounding the next lap

Wow! Indy is living up to its reputation - we are off to the races! Friday, our pre-conference sessions got us off and running. The Networking Fast Lane for new members and first-timers was well attended and was set up to get folks out of their comfort zones and network with new attendees and seasoned leaders. It was a great way to get introduced to not only the annual meeting, but also AONE.

Pam Rudisill, our 2010 AONE president, kicked off the annual meeting with her opening remarks, inspiring all of us to lead during these challenging times. Pam's quote from Charles Dickens, "these are the best of times, these are the worst of times..." certainly rings true 150 years later. Tim Porter-O'Grady received the AONE Lifetime Achievement Award. Tim is certainly well deserving of this award, but don't expect Tim to go off into the sunset. He continues to contribute to all of us nurse leaders and I look forward to Tim's future achievements.

See you the next lap!!

First Day at the AONE Meeting

Today was a great start of the Annual Meeting & Exposition. The opening ceremony began with a short video that enticed the audience. Since we are in Indy, it was fitting to see a video that opened with someone donning racing gear - with an auspicious helmet with the label #1. Soon we noted that the driver, walking to the car, was wearing high heels. "What is this," we asked. The drive then took the car around a lap which ended in the winner's circle. And who got out of that car? It was Pam Rudisill, President of AONE!!! Pam then walked on stage and welcomed all the leaders to the opening of the meeting. She delivered a riveting talk.

Next, Donna Herrin, immediate past President, presented Tim Porter O'Grady with the Lifetime Achievement Award. A very deserving Dr. Porter O'Grady then spoke. He graciously accepted the award but questioned its underlying meaning. He asked Pam Thompson if this award was the sunset of Tim Porter O'Grady - the outspoken nursing leader. He was assured that this was not the sunset; instead it was a new beginning. And with that caveat, he accepted his award followed by laughter from the crowd. As always, Tim provided the attending leaders with insight and humor.

Finally, the opening ceremony ended with the introduction of David Whyte, poet, author, and leader of leaders. He excited the audience with a woven story of how leaders need to seek out their fears by engaging in courageous conversations. What a wounder way to learn about leadership. David not only held our attention with stories but also with fascinating poems both personally written and also recited from the greats like Shakespeare and Frost.

And now the sessions...

My next post will be about the concurrent sessions. I wish I could have listened to all of them.

Before those sessions I did visit the Exhibit Hall. I met many of our great sponsors and vendors as well as visiting with distant friends.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN
Follow the conversation on Twitter - use #aone with each tweet

Meeting officially kicked off!

Greetings from Indy! This morning it was my pleasure to kick off the Annual Meeting! I am thrilled to report that we have over 2,200 nurse leaders and exhibitors in attendance this year.

I began this morning's session by recognizing our past presidents and current AONE board - I'm so grateful to carry on their collective torch! - and I was then joined on stage by my wonderful colleagues at Health Management Associates who presented me with a HUGE bouquet of pink roses. Then Gail Latimer from Siemens Healthcare - one of our wonderful longtime industry supporters - introduced our keynote session speaker David Whyte. David, a very engaging poet and author, talked about developing leadership through courageous conversations, both internally and with others in our organizations.

Now it's off to the Exhibit Hall for our ribbon cutting ceremony and then concurrent sessions in the early afternoon. Tonight is the president's reception sponsored by Hill-Rom. If you are one of our attendees, I highly suggest you bring your dancing shoes. If you forgot a pair, fear not. I packed fifteen pair!!! Take care, Pam

Friday, April 9, 2010

Hello from Indy!

I made it to Indy without issue. That is a first for me - I am directionally challenged.

I attended the New Member and First Time Attendees Networktonight. I know, I'm not new to the AONE meetings; but I like going to this first meeting to talk to newcomers and see the excitement in their eyes. It reminds me of the first meeting I attended.

Tonight's meeting was great! We had a "Speed Date-Like" meeting. Each of us had to ask and answer questions within 3 minutes and then move on to the next person. It was a great way to introduce myself to numerous people and learn about their roles, experiences, and history as nursing leaders.

See you all tomorrow morning for the Opening Ceremony at 08:00.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN
Follow the conversation on Twitter - use #aone with each tweet

Twitter at AONE Meeting

The offical hashtag for this year's meeting is #aone. Use it with all your tweets to join the conversation.

Be well.
Mark Ambler

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Siemens proud to sponsor plenary session!

I am thrilled to be heading to Indianapolis for AONE tomorrow morning! I am looking forward to catching up with many colleagues, learning from the excellent plenary and educational sessions planned, and getting a chance to visit the Exhibit Hall to see new innovations and offerings from the vendors. I am especially excited for the keynote speaker for AONE's opening session this year. Siemens is once again the sponsor of this event which will feature David Whyte, author and poet. He has done amazing work with the leadership teams of many organizations as they consider the importance of communication and the value it can bring if done effectively. For those attending, I think you will find his talk very enlightening. We are proud to be sponsoring the keynote address for AONE and I hope to connect with many of you while we are in Indianapolis this weekend.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

I'm ready for Indy!

I just finished packing for Indy (a day earlier than normal) - OK too much info...One thing I do know for sure is that I am carrying less paper with me. I uploaded the program planner to my calendar which is on my blackberry. For those that have kindle - you can send sessions, abstracts and posters to your kindle. I also created "My Briefcase" account to plan my itinerary. Once signed in, you can check your profile and update it if need be. I created “My Expo Plan”. This is so easy to do -- just browse through the online tradeshow floor plan and create a list of exhibitors you wish to visit. Each online booth has a button that says "Add to My Expo Plan". Click there and it will be added to your personalized plan. Many exhibitors have there contact information available - click on the exhibitor and a screen will come up with there information. This is a great way to plan you time. You can make arrangements to meet with them if there is something or someone you want to spend some time with learning more about. All this can be accessed to your e-briefcase. The bigger issue is “DO NOT” lose your password. If you are anything like me and are forgetful, just place your email address in the space provided and they will send it to you. OK, I will admit, I needed to do that, but now I have my password on my blackberry for future use. Last but not least, do not forget the airline carry on rules -- check out the TSA website if you need a refresher. It makes traveling and getting through security much easier. Safe travels all and see you in Indy soon.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Final Checklist Before the Meeting

To celebrate Atul Gawande's newest book, "The Checklist Manifesto", I thought I would offer you a pre Annual Meeting checklist.

Flight Information
If you can, print out your ticket the day before your flight. Make sure you have your government approved ID! Also, check the airline for luggage information - you don't want to be hit with a high fee because you packed too much.

Hotel Information
Did you receive your confirmation number for your hotel stay? If not, call and request one and keep it with you. Also you will want to know directions to the hotel (driving from home or the airport) and you will want to get directions from the hotel to the conference center. I use Google Maps for all my direction needs

Annual Meeting Confirmation
Did you receive your confirmation email from AONE? If not, you can contact the AONE Registration Bureau at 301-694-5124 or emailed to Should you have questions you can also contact customer service at 800-974-3084 or 847-996-5876.

Make sure your luggage meets the airlines requirements and leave some room - you'll need it to take back all the great stuff you will accumulate at the meeting.

Car Rental
Do you have your rental confirmation? Keep it with you.

Program Planner
Have you completed the online program planner? If not, you can still access it here.

Program Guide
The Annual Meeting Program Guide is now available online. Read it here.

Tech Gear
Make sure if you are bringing a laptop you have your power source and a good secure bag. If you are really security conscious, bring a Kensington Lock. You will also want to bring your cell phone charger and an extra battery - you will be a sending out lots of tweets about your adventures at the meeting. Did you pick up an iPad on Saturday? If so -- BRING IT -- I want to see it!! If your cell phone doesn't have a camera (or a good one), you'll want to bring a digital camera so you can share your experiences when you get home and remember the great time you had at the Annual Meeting.

And now for the really tech savvy people... We will have session abstracts and the business meeting book available for Kindle, eReader, Nook, and iPhone. If you want to download more info about the concurrent sessions, posters, and the business meeting, you can get instructions and the files on-line at the meeting.

I trust this checklist will help you prepare for our meeting this week. See you soon.

Be well.
Mark Ambler, RN