A painful experience in an organization where I spent almost more than 60% of my life

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    The article discusses my bitter experience that proved an excellent learning which will go a long way for me to improve my personal and professional life. The article provides an insight of some part of my working life that enables me to assess my strengths and weaknesses and to learn how I can utilize them in future to make it as a learning experience. It taught me a lesson that life is full of learning and learning continues till time of one’s burial.

    A painful experience in an organization where I spent almost more than 60% of my life

    A painful experience in an organization where I spent almost more than 60% of my life

    First of all, please pardon me for my English grammar as it is not my first language. My sincere apologies for the lengthy reading but I felt it was required to give details to understand my story.

    Being one of the pioneer nurses, in an international institution with 28 years of experience, I am well known and respected by my professional colleagues including doctors, nurses and top management staff. For last 15-18 years, I was rated excellent in my annual performance appraisals by different supervisors.

    Couple of years back, I had a new supervisor Ms. Cathy (Pseudonym), the Director Nursing Services who was rejoining the institution after 15 years gap. I was one of the few members that recommended her hiring as I was on the interview panel. Things changed for me faster than anything after Ms. Cathy's joining. With passage of time, I felt that she did not like me and this was later on verbalized by many senior colleagues including the then chief executive officer who confronted this to my other colleagues.

    Using her authority, Ms. Cathy changed my assignments from clinical areas to nursing practice office where I was expected to develop policies, devise forms, conduct audits of patient care areas etc... Definitely I was not interested in these tasks. I love to work with patients and families. Nevertheless, I accepted but verbalized my feelings. Gradually, my assignments were reduced to do paper work that was the responsibility of her secretary. Once she assigned me to write her biography that she wanted to send to hospital's newsletter. I tried to protest but she did not listen. One day, she asked me to make hospital round to count number of stretchers and wheelchairs and check where these are parked in the facility. This task could be performed by a porter. I was feeling so devastated but could not raise my voice. Basically, I am a very strong person but I was unable to gather myself against the injustice. I was emotionally paralyzed by the treatment. Every night, I used to cry for hours in my bed. I spent a full vibrant life setting up policies, commissioning new units and participating in all the activities from beginning.

    One day, I received a call from the secretary that the Chief Operating Officer wants to see me. I went to his office. He welcomed me and asked how life was going. I said going fine but next what he said surprised me. He said, “I was wondering that you being a very strong woman; did not come to me to complain about what was going on with you. He said that he and the CEO was very well aware and could not expect that I will keep quite. I was in shock to hear this from him but for the first time, I bursted into tears in front of a senior leader. I do not know where I got the courage but I said that it is nice to know that you knew and but why the senior leadership not take any action. Still, I felt relieve that at least they knew and realized that I was a victim. Nevertheless, things remained almost unchanged for couple of months.

    One day, I was in my office when I noticed Ms. Cathy passed by my office. Her office was next to mine. In few minutes, she called me in her office to follow up on a workshop that was planned after two days for Head Nurses. I was responsible for logistic arrangements!!. I gave updates then she called another nurse manager to discuss on the day’s planning. At 2.00 pm I received a call from Human Resource Manager to check for my availability at 4.00 pm as the new CEO wanted to meet but did not share the agenda. The new CEO joined the organization only 3 months ago. When I went to his office, I was surprised to see the entire Nursing and HR management team there. The CEO asked HR manager to call Ms. Cathy. Everyone looked confused as no one knew what was going on. As Ms. Cathy came, CEO thanked her and requested her to take charge. Ms. Cathy with a heavy voice and teary eyes said “I wanted to inform you all that today is my last day at the institution” She then got up and left.

    Now everyone was shocked. We could not believe but in next 10 minutes, we received an email from CEO that Ms. Cathy has resigned with immediate effect. Next day, I received many calls and the colleagues that I met said they remembered me when they read the email. I kept silent…….there was no need to respond to this comment.

    I acknowledge that partially, I was responsible for not raising my voice. But tears roll over my cheeks whenever I remember the time I spent in those days

    Currently, I am working as Nursing Administrator in a different country but same institution
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  3. by   jaderook01
    You were partially responsible for what exactly? From what I gather, this Ms. Cathy individual did you wrong, you said nothing, the management knew she was doing you wrong, they told you they knew she was doing you wrong, and then she was likely pressured to resign by the management. There may have been numerous other reasons that prompted her leaving. If you have any guilt over any of this, I don't see why.
  4. by   3ringnursing
    I too am a bit confused, but I feel the undercurrent of extreme emotion and duress.

    I wish you well wherever you are.
  5. by   BSNbeauty
    So what I got from the story was what goes around comes around. I don't feel like you were responsible for anything. Ms. Cathy got exactly what she deserved. Do you like being an Administrator ? Since you seem to enjoy patient care.
  6. by   AJJKRN
    I think the OP states "responsibility" as in not standing up for themselves like being the enabler in a bad relationship by putting up with their significant others bad behaviors.

    OP, your silence, perserverence (spelling ), and strength are probably what led the higher ups to stand up for you instead of speaking your mind and having it turn badly on you...which happens all too often in the heat of the moment.

    What doesn't kill us only makes us stronger!
  7. by   Ben_Dover
    Well that was handled graciously and professionally! No wonder why they revered you at that institution!
    I'm very impressed.

    Much Respect!

    Ben D.
  8. by   cleback
    I feel like there should be a "moral to the story" moment but am unclear of what it would be. Is she guilty for not bringing her issues up to the manager, thereby costing the lady her job? Is she happy she silently persevered and the problem resolved? There may be some cultural differences that make this unclear.
  9. by   CeciBean
    It seems that what is expressed here is "victim guilt", which is common to victims of crime as well as victims of abuse of all kinds. It's normal, but it's unnecessary. What happened was not at all your fault. I've had the same sort of thing happen to me. Be good to yourself and realize that Ms. Cathy, whoever she is, was an abusive person and was the one at fault here.
  10. by   roser13
    OP, I enjoyed reading your story and am glad you came out on top, so to speak.

    However, I am compelled to ask: Why is this an Article?!

    It's a post. It's a vent. It is not, however, an article. Show me the research!!
  11. by   Apple-Core
    I'm not sure why you felt badly at the end? Could you elaborate?

    At least the higher management took notice. I worked at a place once; I was there for well over 5 years, and a new manager joined. It was horrendous. He was hostile and aggressive and spoke to you like you were worse than a piece of poo on his shoe. One day in the office he was screaming at me (for something that was actually his own fault) and called me a c**t. I took it to his manager because I'd had enough of his verbal abuse (as had most others who worked there!). Turns out his manager and him were "motorbike buddies", so long story short my complaint was just ignored.
  12. by   caliotter3
    You should have spoken up earlier. Possible that had her behavior been nipped in the bud, she could have retained her job. But then, since management knew what was going on, and kept quiet about it themselves, for so long, allowing you to suffer, only shows that you did not rate high enough for their concern. They then used this against her, when they wanted to, because they wanted to. If not your experiences, they would have used something else to justify their agenda against this lady. Probably nothing you could have done. Lesson here is to always be careful of one's own position in the institution.
  13. by   thkh3
    I'm sorry you had to go through that ordeal I pray you are in a great situation now. Even though you did not speak up it still shows you to be strong because you persevered and things worked in your favor at the end.