Transitioning from a bedside nursing role to a leadership position requires dedication, passion, and a drive to make a difference. Raquél Pérez, the Chief Nursing Officer of Gales®, embodies these qualities and has successfully navigated this career path. With a rich background as an ardent user of allnurses since 2012 and four years of experience as a bedside nurse, Pérez brings a deep understanding of the nursing community and a genuine commitment to supporting her fellow nurses.
Pérez shared her remarkable journey from being a bedside nurse to becoming a nurse leader and the exciting developments taking place at Gales®—a company dedicated to empowering nurses and revolutionizing nursing footwear.
Join us as we delve into Pérez's insights and discover how Gales is making a lasting positive impact in the nursing community.
A Journey from Bedside Nurse to Chief Nursing Officer
Pérez began her nursing career as a bedside nurse, spending four years in various units, including medsurg cardiac, and women's oncology, before finding her passion in the NICU. Pérez discovered her creative side alongside her nursing duties, starting with user-generated content (UGC) videos on social media platforms.
Her knack for content creation led to collaborations with brands and ultimately caught the attention of Gales®. Raquél's desire to combine her nursing expertise with creativity naturally led her to transition from patient care to a role at Gales®, where she could positively impact nurses on a larger scale.
Responsibilities and Focus as the Chief Nursing Officer
As the Chief Nursing Officer at Gales®, Pérez is a liaison between the brand and the consumer. She represents the voice of nurses at Gales®, connecting with partners, communities, and event planning to guide the team. Her opinions and insights are highly valued, as she helps shape PR and media strategies to serve the nursing community better, extending beyond nursing footwear and aiming to provide holistic support to nurses professionally and personally.
Qualities and Skills for Transitioning into Nursing Leadership
According to Pérez, the qualities that make a successful nurse—established during nursing school and through practical experience—are the same qualities that enable a nurse to excel in a leadership role.
These include organization, prioritization, and the ability to innovate on the spot. Raquél points out that nurses have limitless potential beyond the bedside, and nurses like IntelyCare's Rebecca Love have already proven this.
What Sets Gales Apart?
Gales® is a pioneering brand that has set out to transform the landscape of nursing footwear. Founded in 2020 by Rob Gregg, a former Italian luxury footwear owner passionate about supporting healthcare workers, Gales® takes pride in developing innovative and functional designs specifically tailored to meet the unique demands of nurses.
Recognizing the challenges nurses face in their daily work environments, Gales® has made it their mission to provide footwear that combines exceptional durability, comfort, and style.
Incorporating Nurse Feedback in Product Development
Gales® values nurse feedback and actively seeks to improve their nursing shoe models. From the beginning, Gales® has welcomed input from nurses, crowdsourcing feedback from 1,500 nurses to create Frontline, their first shoe model. Their newer model, the Pro Line shoe, was developed based on customer input, including requests for wide widths and increased air filtration holes for sweaty feet.
Gales® also has an ambassador and student ambassador program, where nurses and nursing students can share their suggestions on Gales®' products and gain experience in professional development and leadership. They remain committed to listening to nurses' needs and welcome feedback on various aspects, such as colors and features, to continuously enhance their product offerings.
Durability and Longevity
Gales® shoes are designed to withstand the demanding nature of nursing work environments. These innovative nursing shoes are antimicrobial, waterproof, and slip-resistant. By eliminating laces, Gales® eliminates potential bacterial buildup in crevices. The lightweight and comfortable construction of Gales® shoes, weighing less than an iPhone, contributes to the overall well-being of nurses, providing support for those on their feet during long shifts.
Embracing Environmental Friendliness and Sustainability
Gales® prioritizes environmental friendliness by using recycled materials that are sustainable and ethically produced. The company is committed to finding new ways to promote sustainability and reduce its ecological footprint.
Holistic Support for Nurses
Gales® goes beyond providing quality footwear to contribute to the overall well-being of nurses. Gales® has also been involved in giveaways during Nurses Week that holistically support nurses' physical, mental, and spiritual well-being and an ambassador program that involves nurses in decision-making processes.
Collaborations with Influential Figures for Greater Impact
Raquél shared the excitement of collaborating with Nurse Blake, a prominent figure in the nursing community. Gales® and Nurse Blake created a shoe collection to reduce fatigue from long shifts, ensuring cloudlike comfort and slip and fluid resistance.
Additionally, a portion of the Nurse Blake x Gales® Pro Line collaboration proceeds is donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, supporting children with critical illnesses.
Collaboration with Alex's Lemonade Stand for Childhood Cancer Research
As of July, Gales® has excitingly released a new collaboration with Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, a nonprofit organization that funds childhood cancer research. This initiative aims to contribute to the noble cause of fighting pediatric cancer, honoring the legacy of Alex, a young girl who initiated lemonade stands to support childhood cancer research. Gales® is proud to donate a portion of shoe sales for their ALSF x Gales Exclusive Pro Line shoe to this important cause.
Exciting Future Developments
Looking ahead, Gales® is dedicated to nursing innovation and further support for the nursing community.
Nurses can anticipate continued collaboration with influencers, ongoing improvements to product offerings based on nurse feedback, and partnerships with charitable organizations that align with Gales®' mission of positively impacting nurses' lives.