*****ing

  1. fred
    Last edit by ohbet on Apr 2, '03
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   Glad2behere
    OOOH, this is hard to fix! I feel for you. Supervisors don't really wield enough power to change attitudes. Sounds like all your complainers and back-biters are in burn-out and meltdown.

    Confrontation may help if you let your supervisor know what you are doing beforehand, because I promise you they will let her/him
    know after the confrontation so CYA. You may try to take the intial approach that an awareness of the problem is evident, and slowly try to change it, and you may make fewer enemies.

    Working in that environment can make you old quick.
  4. by   ceecel.dee
    I think this problem is so widespread that it is almost the norm. It seems that poor morale is talked about constantly! On my shifts, some of us have decided to make a conscious effort to "choose my attitude" and try to set the stage from the get-go, in report. We talk about things like making a real connection with a patient, how great the housekeeping team was yesterday when they dropped everything to get that CCU bed changed over so quickly for that evolving MI who needed it fast, etc. Most of the time, the attitude is contagious. If there is one who just has to grumble, I'll listen.....but if it as important as the consistancy of the pudding, I'll say something like, "come on, let's hear one positive about SOMETHING on that tray", and she usually won't be so negative (at least around me). This doesn't shut down our communcation altogether, just the unneeded parts. She still comes to me for what she needs (as charge, she still needs to communicate with me and vise versa) and with problems too, but not just random complaining about what dreariness we must tolerate. We have talked, and talked, and talked about this in our nurses meetings (management lead) and all agree the negativity brings us all down, that we spend ALOT of time on a single shift just B & M-ing. It really takes away from patient care time! Even after all this talk and agreement about the problem, nothing changes! A few of us are just attempting to be change agents. It has helped, in my opinion, with what is brought to me anyway.

    Some of us have been turned on to the FISH program for positive attitudes, increased customer satisfaction, increased fun in the workplace for employee satisfaction too. It's kind of expensive (roughly $600 for training tapes, materials) and if it's not embraced (and paid for) at the top it will not work on the floor, but it looks like a great program! Anyone out there using that at their place?
  5. by   Audreyfay
    I found it impossible to work in that environment. It was either join them or leave. That type of attitude can't help but somehow catch on. I know I found myself become more negative when I worked around it. Just like if one works in an environment with a lot of profanity, before a month is up, the words somehow slip out of the mouth. Like brainwashing. My best advice....look for other water to swim in.
  6. by   Gardengal
    The ward clerk and co-worker RNs are one problem and the head nurse another. If the supervisory person acts in this same negative way your problem is much bigger than a few isolated coworkers.

    For the ward clerk and RNs-I have found that when I say to complainers and backbiters who are peers that I sympathize with their bad mood, but I've heard them vent now so please...no more because now it's affecting my day.....They look at me askance, but typically don't act that way around me any more.
    Thay know I won't feed into that type of behavior .

    In regards to the head nurse, I would watch her behavior and see if this is her norm If it is-has anyone ever mentioned to her that her behavior is reflected in others? Do you think she would be receptive to a conversation of that nature? By all rights if you plan to go over her head about this, you need to talk to her first. Otherwise you'll have to risk not following chain of command and risk reprimand yourself.

    I would ask to speak to the head nurse privately. In private I would mention how you are concerned about how negative behaviors can affect the mood of the unit, team spirit and how you feel in your job. Sometimes a subtle reminder like that reminds a supervisor of her responsibility to keep a team spirit going in the work place.
    Good Luck
  7. by   micro
    I have to agree. This is becoming almost mainstream. All you can do is not participate and if not satisfactory for you, leave. Otherwise, join in on the fun. NOt!!!!!!!!!

    I float of late. It is great!!!!!
  8. by   Youda
    A year ago, I would have said to just move on. But, I had the good fortune to work with one nurse that changed my mind. She was always up-beat, smiling, and positive. When someone started to say something to her (backbiting or c/o), she'd say, "I don't carry messages; and since this doesn't involve me, I'd rather not hear about it." Then, she'd be positive and caring, "Is there anything I can do to help with your frustration?"

    It didn't take her long to change the attitude in the entire nursing staff. Can't believe that one person made such a difference. I have her phone number on my speed-dial, and hope we can stay friends forever and ever!
  9. by   Cubby
    I thought this behavior was normal for the Nursing Profession.
    It's just the norm where I work.
  10. by   sjoe
    It has been the norm every place I've ever worked in nursing. One reason I've kept moving on. Here's something I read yesterday about that very dynamic.

    Wurtzel, Elizabeth, B*tch: In Praise of Difficult Women, Doubleday, NY, 1998. (censorship supplied by this BB)

    page 14 "According to psychologist Robert Cairns, girls, at around age ten, develop a powerful, sophisticated technique that, although not physically assertive, uses alienation and rumor-mongering to vanquish a rival," writes Michael Segell in one of Esquire's periodic attempts to remind its readers why women are not to be trusted. "This style of indirect aggression can emotionally devastate the victim, who often has no idea why, or even by whom, she's being attacked. Organizing social intrigues as a way of ganging up on a peer not only prolongs conflict but kindles larger group discord. As girls enter adulthood, they become even more skilled at using gossip, aspersions, and social ostracism to assault their adversaries."

    (I remember this starting in the second grade, when we were only 7 years old. I've always thought of it as the "Let's not talk to Suzy today" syndrome.)
    Last edit by sjoe on Oct 5, '02
  11. by   Youda
    Originally posted by sjoe
    According to psychologist Robert Cairns, girls, at around age ten, develop a powerful, sophisticated technique that, although not physically assertive, uses alienation and rumor-mongering to vanquish a rival," writes Michael Segell in one of Esquire's periodic attempts to remind its readers why women are not to be trusted. "This style of indirect aggression can emotionally devastate the victim, who often has no idea why, or even by whom, she's being attacked. Organizing social intrigues as a way of ganging up on a peer not only prolongs conflict but kindles larger group discord. As girls enter adulthood, they become even more skilled at using gossip, aspersions, and social ostracism to assault their adversaries.

    (I remember this starting in the second grade, when we were only 7 years old. I've always thought of it as the "Let's not talk to Suzy today" syndrome.)
    Good grief! This is so true.
    Thank you for posting that! I never thought about it before like this!
    Any ideas on how to deal with it, though? Is the only way to protect yourself from it to be a bigger *itch than anyone else? I see this all the time at places I've worked. Surely there's ways to deal with it! HELP!
  12. by   nightingale
    One of the reason I work agency....
  13. by   caroladybelle
    Unfortunately, b!@#$ing and moaning occur in all professions, among all genders, religions, races and ages.

    If you raise yourself above it and avoid it, others will learn not to try to engage you in it. They will also learn to respect you.

    Carolina "Iron Magnolia of the South"

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