Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Organizational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Douglas DeVore

Second Advisor

Dr. Tricia Kassab

Third Advisor

Dr. Bradley Tooker


Purpose: The purpose of this phenomenological method study was to identify and describe strategies that exemplary chief nurse executive leaders use to identify and establish common grounds to produce breakthrough results in healthcare by using the six domains of transformational conflict strategies: collaboration, communication, emotional intelligence, ethical behaviors, problem solving, and shared interest.

Methodology: As a part of the thematic phenomenological study, the research identified and described the lived experiences of eight exemplary chief nurse executive leaders in health care who used conflict transformational strategies to find common ground to produce breakthrough results. The target population for the study included chief nurse executives from 195 general acute hospitals in Southern California. Data were collected through in-depth, one-to-one interviews that were conducted as a primary method for data collection. A thematic team of eight researchers and two faculty advisors developed the semistructured interview questions.

Findings: The literature and findings from this study demonstrated how exemplary chief nurse executives used the six domains of conflict transformational strategies to establish common ground and produce breakthrough results. The semistructured interviews and artifacts resulted in 19 major themes, 376 references, six key findings, and two unexpected findings.

Conclusions: The literature and findings support that exemplary chief nurse executives showed their ability to use the six domains of conflict transformation strategies independently or in combination to establish common ground and produce breakthrough results.

Recommendations: It is recommended that acute care hospitals develop and integrate training on the six domains of conflict transformational strategies in establishing common ground and producing breakthrough results for their nurse leaders, particularly for new nurse leaders. Additionally, it is recommended that organizations develop formal leadership training to develop staff and nurse leaders on transformational leadership and skills to ensure consistency in application and practice by the nurse leaders, including the chief nurse executive.