Nursing in a World Outside of Your Control with Tim Guest

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Today our guest is Tim Guest, the President-elect of the Canadian Nurses Association. Tim is a Registered Nurse with a BScN from the University of Alberta and a Master of Business Administration in Executive Management with Specialization in Leadership from Royal Roads University.

Tim has over 28 years of experience in the Canadian health care system, from clinician to senior executive, in Alberta and Nova Scotia including rural, urban and academic/tertiary settings.

Tim’s portfolios have included program responsibility for Medicine, Emergency, Critical Care, Trauma, Ambulatory Care, Surgical Services, Pathology/Laboratory, Endoscopy, Diagnostic Imaging, Mental Health, Maternal/Child services, Rehabilitation, Pastoral Care, Home Care and Population health, and access and flow.

Tim is an accreditation surveyor with Accreditation Canada. He has also been a board member of the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta, and College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia, and has an adjunct appointment with the Dalhousie University School of Nursing.


Episode Highlights

We start by talking about Tim’s nursing journey which began in small town rural Alberta and took him places he couldn’t have imagined before exploring:

  • The difference in the experience and trajectory of being a male in a primarily female dominated industry
  • How to navigate career changes outside of your control (layoffs, position eliminations)
  • What everyday leadership actually looks like
  • A plan of action in nurses seeking national or provincial leadership roles
  • Ways to be political engaged as a nurse
  • How to shake the “Just a Nurse” mentality
  • What issues or social justice platforms nurses can collectively put their voices behind

Key Points

1. Don’t back away from a challenge

2. There’s never going to be a perfect time

3. Grab hold of what fundamentally moves you and use it as a catalyst to get you involved with the world



“The time to actually make the decision about whether a new role is right for you is not at the time of applying, it’s when you get offered it. Until you actually get offered it, you don’t have a decision. Don’t minimize yourself by not applying. Apply.”

—Tim Guest




“Titles are irrelevant. Any nurse is a leader and practices and provides leadership in the role they’re in. Managers don’t own it.”

—Tim Guest


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