Loyalty to a nursing unit

  1. The other day at work, some of the nurses who'd been on the unit for 15+ were talking about how it was unfair that so many people weren;t loyal to the unit. I was just wondering what your thoughts are on this.

    I personally have alot of interests in nursing and advancing my practice. Although I like the unit I work on and the patient population, for me personally I would see it as limiting myself and not doing what I really want to do.

    These nurses were talking about how many people have come and gone and how it is frustrating and while I understand their point of view, at the same time I do not. They deserve a ton of respect for being so dedicated, but there personally for me I couldnt imagine doing the same thing for 15 years.

    What are your thoughts on this?
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   renerian
    WEll I know when I worked on an oncology/bmt unit for 6.5 years I loved it. It was not for everyone. It is hard on the staff to see people come and go, that is true. I only left to care for two family members in hospice as they needed 24 hour caregivers. I was going to be a lifer on the floor. I think it is really hard to bond with someone then watch them go. It is also hard to train so many people, that I understand as I have done it myself. I think most people would understand if you came and were not happy and wanted to try something else.

    Does that help?

    renerian
  4. by   SmilingBluEyes
    show ME some loyalty and I might do so in return. Sorry, but in today's climate where NO one is assured a future in what he/she does and the "golden watch" retirements are a thing of the past...well.....I guess it depends on what you define to be loyalty. Do I show up at work when I say I will, ON TIME and do MY JOB correctly and honestly? YEP! Do I owe them my future when something better comes along to suit my needs? ABSOLUTELY NOT! They would think NOTHING of canning me or very valuable co-workers or screwing with our 401K's and other benefits in times when budgetary cuts are being made. Sorry, in that light, no loyalty is due any unit in my eyes --- and I never signed any dotted lines saying so.

    Friends, We are charged with building our futures and we have been shown time and again, no one will take care of us once retired. Ask any retiree now how much of what they were promised long ago was actually delivered upon retirement, or remains. Loyalty? Hmmmm I just don't think so......
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Oct 10, '02
  5. by   sjoe
    blueeyes--exactly right. Integrity has to do with keeping one's word.

    Loyalty to employees/employers has been out of date for a long time now, thanks largely to employer behavior. IMHO.
  6. by   colleen10
    Hi new CCU,

    I agree with the other posters that "loyalty toward one's employer" has gone out the window. That just is not our social and business climate any longer.

    Most boss's and companies would not be loyal to their employees, so why should the employees provide the same? I learned the hard way, get it in writing and like Steve Miller says "oh, oh, take the money and run". Luckily, I am young and glad I learned those lessons early in my life time as I used to be very trusting.

    I think the older nurses on your unit may feel that loyalty is important because most people of older generations were raised and worked during a time when you could work for the same company your whole life and get paid a decent wage. And I think that they may feel the nurses that come and go so easily are not necessarily being dis-loyal to the hospital as they are being disloyal to the rest of the nurses on that floor.
  7. by   whipping girl in 07
    [
    And I think that they may feel the nurses that come and go so easily are not necessarily being dis-loyal to the hospital as they are being disloyal to the rest of the nurses on that floor.
    [B]

    Colleen, I think you hit the nail on the head! In the unit I work on, we have many nurses who have been there for 10 yrs+, and many who have just started, but not very many in between. I think most of the "older" nurses understand to a degree why the nurses come in for a year or two and then leave for more money (as in some other state or to travel). It seems like it's that way everywhere. Besides, a lot of us are secondary breadwinners, and sometimes when the primary breadwinner has to move for one reason or another, we have to go too. I am faced with that right now. I like where I am and would like to stay there at least a couple of more years, but I just can't. Hubby's job seems to be drying up, and we're going to have to move somewhere where the cost of living is a lot cheaper so we can live on my salary while he goes back to school. Not what I had planned but I'll roll with it.

    Also, sometimes it's hard on the new people who feel like they are "new" forever. That is, we're not going to accept you till you've been here for five years. That hasn't happened to me where I work because I've made it a point to get to know my co-workers, even if they are not initially forthcoming. I also joined AACN, which I think may have earned me some brownie points with the NM and days charge nurse (although I wasn't trying to, I didn't even know who was going to be at the first meeting I went to; I just saw the flyer at work and decided to go). Some people go into a job expecting to make friends and be "one of the guys" instantly. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn't. But the new person has to do their part to fit in. That's what I've tried to do.

    As for loyalty to a unit or a hospital, everyone has to make their own decision as to how much BS they will take in exchange for comfort and familiarity. Our sister unit (same NM) for years was one of the best floors in the hospital to work. Well, not anymore. They have lost nearly 40 nurses in the past year and when the new RN grads were out pounding the pavement for jobs back in May, not one of them even APPLIED to work in that unit. So now it's almost all agency and new grad LPNs. We just became decentralized a couple of months ago, but we are strongly encouraged to take a pull to that unit if we are cancelled and they have a need. I refuse to though, because I might have to be in charge (because of all the agency and LPNs) and they are so short staffed (not to mention the last time I worked out there, I had six patients at the very ends of three different halls, ugh!).
  8. by   Nurse Ratched
    Loyalty is for friends and family, not corporations. I was very loyal to my old job because it was in a very small company, not for profit, knew everybody, and really felt like I was making a difference. However, I also burned out from giving too much of myself. I wouldn't trade it, but I won't necessarily jump to travel that road again.

    I am just another cog in the machine where I work now, and that's just fine with me. When we have to go elsewhere, I will turn in my notice with no regrets, knowing that I did the best job I could while there, but not feeling any sense of disloyalty toward the impartial beaurocracy that would drop me as soon as financially exigency dictated it.
  9. by   fab4fan
    What is this, the Mob? Are you supposed to take a blood oath when you take a job?

    I agree with the others...show ME some loyalty, for a change. Being miserable together is nothing to be proud of.
  10. by   New CCU RN
    I am glad to hear that you all feel the same way I do. Although I have great respect for the "dinosaur nurses" on my unit, I just couldn't ever be one myself. Listening them to though made me feel a little guilty that here I am five months on the unit and planning to leave in another 18 months or so.

    It isn't b/c the unit is a bad place to work...it is a great place to be..it's b/c the pay sucks, I want to experience other work environments and advance my autonomy, and other reasons.

    Thank you all for agreeing.
  11. by   Rustyhammer
    I'll work my job as long as it suits my needs. While I am AT the job I will speak highly of it and show loyalty. But once an oppourtunity comes along to better my self and let me do more for my family I'm gone to the greener pastures. Loyalty? It has it's merits. But I'll do whats best for my and my family first.
    -Russell
  12. by   adrienurse
    It's hard to be loyal to people who infuriate you. On the same note, there are co-workers whom I love to work with and consider to be my friends. It is just not a "team" atmosphere altogether. My priority is educating myself and getting the experience I need to be the best nurse I can be. Although I enjoy the fact that I have now worked there long enough to have vacation hours, once the frustration outweighs the oportunities to learn, I am outta there.
  13. by   Luv cats
    Hey.... burnout happens.......loyalty or not. Sometimes you need a change to stimulate your mind and interest in the job again.
  14. by   shannonRN
    Originally posted by SmilingBluEyes
    show ME some loyalty and I might do so in return. Sorry, but in today's climate where NO one is assured a future in what he/she does and the "golden watch" retirements are a thing of the past...well.....I guess it depends on what you define to be loyalty. Do I show up at work when I say I will, ON TIME and do MY JOB correctly and honestly? YEP! Do I owe them my future when something better comes along to suit my needs? ABSOLUTELY NOT! They would think NOTHING of canning me or very valuable co-workers or screwing with our 401K's and other benefits in times when budgetary cuts are being made. Sorry, in that light, no loyalty is due any unit in my eyes --- and I never signed any dotted lines saying so.
    very well said!

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