Got called to HR...what fun!

  1. Ok, so this happend like 6 months ago, and I am still not over it. So I am going to vent, and would love to hear others opinions on it.

    I used to work day shift (moved to nights after the infamous HR incident). We work well together on our unit, or so I thought. The charge nurse and another nurse and I are friends, who socialize outside of work. Apparently, this did not sit well with some people.

    One day, the charge nurse was called to HR. She was freaking out (because usually, its not a good thing to be called down there). She came back devestated. The next day, the other nurse was called down there. So I knew that it was only a matter of time before it was my turn.

    So I jumped the gun. I called down to HR and asked them when it was my turn. The HR rep was suprised (to say the least). She said that yes, she DID need to see me, probably around 4PM or so. Well there was no way that I was going to sit and worry about it for 8 hours, so I said that 4PM wouldnt work for me. She called back and said I could come down immediately.

    So I get down there, and my manager and the unit manager are there with the HR rep. Apparently, "several" staff members (3 or 4) had stated that they wanted to be transferred off our unit because of certain staff members. So according to HR, they did a "random" interview of staff members, asking if the staff on our unit practiced our hospital values (integrity, compassion, accountability, respect and excellence).

    Anyways, according to HR, 70 percent of the people interviewed, stated that I did not practice these values. Among the accusations were: I am unprofessional, I treat doctors rudely, Im mean, I play on the internet, I make fun of patients, Im not a team player, and I dont respect LVN's or CNA's.

    So I try to remain calm and I ask the HR rep, "Can you give me some instances of when these so called incidents occured?"

    Her reply, "Im not going to give you that information."

    I say, "Ok...so you say that 70% of my coworkers have named me as a problem. How many people did you interview?"

    Her reply, "im not going to give you that information."

    I asked her, "How am I supposed to address these issues if I am not given specifics?" Her reply was "You just need to know that these are the perceptions of your coworkers."

    The meeting went down hill from there. And yes, I am ashamed to admit it, but I cried.

    What I found ironic was the fact that the HR rep was told that I was "an excellent nurse". I looked her in the eye and said, "Really? How can I be an excellent nurse when I make fun of patients, dont respect my coworkers or doctors, play on the internet, and am mean?"

    She didn't have much of a reply to that one.

    Then the manager states that I needed to show immediate improvement or it would be grounds for termination. She then REPEATS the statement and I look at her and say, "You already told me that. I consider what you now saying as a threat."

    Then they told me that if I mentioned it to anyone, I would be fired.

    So after I stewed about it for several days, I decided to transfer to nights. It was obvious that we needed to break things up a bit. And get this....since transfering, I have received numerous compliments from my coworkers stating how much they enjoy working with me because Im such a "team player" and so "helpful." And Ive had 3 or 4 people ask me to come back to days because they "miss me."

    My manager actually acknowledged the compliments and said "Good job." I replied, "Really? Thanks. You know what? Im acting EXACTLY like I did when I worked days. What does that tell you?"

    Anyways.....I know I sound cynical. I still get PO'd when I think about it, much less type it all out. As mouthy as I was, Im suprised they didn't fire me.

    Anyways, just wanted to get it off my chest.....ahhhhh....I feel better now!
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  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   justme1972
    I have seen this tactic before, and I'm going to go out on a limb and tell you what is REALLY going on.

    First, HR can't give you specifics because there probably aren't any, and "survey" probably wasn't done either.

    They are being vague b/c they are not going to back themselves into a corner...they are going to continue to critique you in ways that you cannot possibly improve by stating you have to change the "perception others have of you", "you need to get along better with your co-workers", or "be more professional".

    They are setting you up, so I would start looking for another job at another facility.

    Been there, done that, seen it, and it's a game that is almost impossible to win.
  4. by   TazziRN
    [font=book antiqua]i've worked all shifts. at my first job i much preferred nights because there was a lot more cohesiveness. i was also friends with the charge nurse on nights, and i was relief charge. on pms (not my choice to switch) it wasn't bad but it wasn't great. days was awful. no help at all if you weren't in the clique, etc. each shift has its own personality, and not everyone fits into them.
    [font=book antiqua]
    i don't blame you for getting upset about what happened, especially since there was no validity and you were denied your right to hear the accusations.
  5. by   Christie RN2006
    Sounds similar to what happened to me. When I was almost done with my orientation and when I was first off of orientation, I worked with a few people that I really did not get along with. They would constantly tell my manager that I didn't help people and that I belittled them, etc. It always amazed me that the times that they would accuse me of this was normally right when I was coming out of a room after helping someone?! I ended up switching to work with a different group and we all get along great and I haven't been pulled into the office once since I switched

    I am terrified at the moment though because we are going to be changing our schedules to every 3rd weekend and they are going to be splitting up the weekend groups... I'm afraid that they are going to put me back with some of the people that I didn't get along with I have been thinking about going in and talking to my manager about my concerns.
  6. by   cmo421
    Sorry for what u have been going through. One thing I have learnt is never go o a HR or NM meeting alone. If u have a union , bring a rep, if not, bring anyone. They do not have to participate,but just witness the meeting. If u can not get someone at that time, request the meeting be delayed until u can. Even if u bring an adult from outside. They can not deny this. You have a right to a witness or rep.
    Try always to be calm and concise in your speaking in a meeting like this. The first one that raises their voice , usually looses. Ask for facts, and do not sign anything until u can read it well and agree with what it says.
    Good luck and see what happens. When woman work together,things get snitty. I bet ya,they have nothing on you, someone was pms ing and you got served on a platter because of that. Sad but true in many cases.
  7. by   catlynLPN
    That is pathetic. IMO they had nothing on you, because they couldn't give you specifics.
    I had something similar happen to me once. I got pulled in the office due to complaints from a co-worker. They wouldn't give me specifics, or dates or instances but said I was rude to him.
    I was so shocked and I didn't handle the meeting well at all.
    But now that I look back on it, I realize they didn't have anything on me because they couldn't give me any specific dates or instances, just general complaints.
    It's been several years now...like about 3-4.....and I still think about it, because the nurse who instigiated it still works there only he's on a different shift now than me and we get along okay now, and I thought we did back then, but apparently we didn't...according to him. There were some other underlying issues to my situation, I'm sure, one of which is prejudice by this particular nurse and another one who planted the seeds in his mind.
  8. by   Tangerine Lipgloss
    I would look for another position. Sorry you are going through this. Once they have you on "the list" it is impossible to get off.
  9. by   DTCC PreRN
    Hindsight being 20/20, this is what you do if this ever happens again, OR you could still do it now. When the "HR" rep stated that a survey was conducted and specefic complaints were levied against you, but couldn't or wouldn't provide specifics. Your response should have been, "well maybe my attorney can get that from you".

    I work in HR and that is NOT how it goes. As an advocate for employees and the company, we are supposed to be neutral and provide nothing but the facts. Intimidation was used during your conference to quell whatever it was that was making someone on your floor feel uncomfortable. Specific instances should have been provided to you and should not have been accumulated and handed to you all at once. They should have addressed them with you AS THEY HAPPEN!! I'm appalled.

    If you want to persue this, request to see your employement file. You have a right to see your own file. If they refuse, ask them why. If they tell you it's co. policy, ask to see the policy. (They won't have one). If they still refuse, just say okay and have your attorney request it. Bet they won't say no to him/her.

    This burns me up. I wish you all the best and I'm sorry you have a dumb a** for an HR rep. :angryfire
  10. by   NewRN2008
    i had this happen a job i was at for 6 yrs as a CMA. the 2 mgt ppl, always on my case. at least once a week i was called in to be "talked to" and berrated,,(SP?) i am so happy i left, i dont know how i lasted there so long. constant watching over my shoulder and BS!

    i am so sorry this is happening to you. but did you ever think that the probably ONE person that complained about it was the one person that was probably best friends with that HR person?? makes you think huh?

    once again i am sorry. maybe look elsewhere if u can do that at this point in ur life.
    -H-
  11. by   VivaLasViejas
    Quote from Hopefull2009
    I have seen this tactic before, and I'm going to go out on a limb and tell you what is REALLY going on.

    First, HR can't give you specifics because there probably aren't any, and "survey" probably wasn't done either.

    They are being vague b/c they are not going to back themselves into a corner...they are going to continue to critique you in ways that you cannot possibly improve by stating you have to change the "perception others have of you", "you need to get along better with your co-workers", or "be more professional".

    They are setting you up, so I would start looking for another job at another facility.

    Been there, done that, seen it, and it's a game that is almost impossible to win.
    I had the very same thing done to me at my last job. Funny, how I'd never had issues like this anywhere else I've worked, only at this one hospital.......and now I work in a place where almost everyone seems to think I'm just great. I'm the same person I was two years ago---maybe a little older and wiser, and definitely grayer, but essentially the same person.

    I can say from experience that when the handwriting's on the wall like this, it's time to go. Almost no one wins in such a toxic environment........best just to cut your losses and move on.

    Best of luck to you.
  12. by   bigsyis
    Quote from Hopefull2009
    I have seen this tactic before, and I'm going to go out on a limb and tell you what is REALLY going on.

    First, HR can't give you specifics because there probably aren't any, and "survey" probably wasn't done either.

    They are being vague b/c they are not going to back themselves into a corner...they are going to continue to critique you in ways that you cannot possibly improve by stating you have to change the "perception others have of you", "you need to get along better with your co-workers", or "be more professional".

    They are setting you up, so I would start looking for another job at another facility.

    Been there, done that, seen it, and it's a game that is almost impossible to win.
    This is SO true. My situation was almost identical to yours, but I had been out for 6 weeks for major surgery. They called to tell me not to come in on the day I was supposed to RTW, but to take acouple more days off and come in to talk with the DON and my Manager. So I did. According to the DON, 3 MDs in my absence had complained to her that I was not a good nurse or charge nurse. They liked me as a person, BUT... She could/would not give me any specifics. Her answers were almost identical to what you were told by your HR person. I was threatened in the same way, and I was dripping tears throughout the whole thing. I'd been a very well respected nurse for 20 years, with multiple certifications. This was an assault on my professionalism, my abilities, AND my personality, with nothing more to go by than what she was saying. Let me add that my Manager sat by my side for the entire time, STANDING UP FOR ME, AT EVERY TURN! Of course, the DON outranked her, and her parting shot to me was identical. No talk of the conversation, or I would be fired. There was a nurse that had been the CN there for many years that had been moved out of the position some time before I got there. Suddenly, she was back in, and I was a floor nurse. I did that for a little over 6 months with several of my colleagues complimenting me for helping them almost every day, because they often used me as a resource person. I was given a mentoring position fora BSN student that was about to graduate, for 8 weeks. Would they have done that if I'd been as bad as they say? Anyway, things like this do happen, and probably the only way that you will ever be happy in your work again is to get out of there. The position I have now utilizes all areas of experience that I have ever had, and I am respected by staff and MDs. Good luck to you.
  13. by   aKyRN81
    Quote from mjlrn97
    I had the very same thing done to me at my last job. Funny, how I'd never had issues like this anywhere else I've worked, only at this one hospital.......and now I work in a place where almost everyone seems to think I'm just great. I'm the same person I was two years ago---maybe a little older and wiser, and definitely grayer, but essentially the same person.

    I can say from experience that when the handwriting's on the wall like this, it's time to go. Almost no one wins in such a toxic environment........best just to cut your losses and move on.

    Best of luck to you.
    You are EXACTLY right! The worst thing would be to stay and try to 'improve' or defend yourself. The emotional and mental pressure would be unbearable.
  14. by   jmgrn65
    What is sad that this happens to a lot of us. It has happened to me, I was forced off the unit. I was told find another place in the network or you will be fired. Luckily I do have some connections, and 3 years later I am in a management type position and doing quite well! Things do happen for a reason, you just don't see it at first.
    I was told the same thing " don't talk about it" If it is on the up and up then there should not be any reason you can't talk about it. IMHO
    I am going 2nd and 3rd the advice of op's and say get another job.

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