Unhappy staff, unsure how to cope
- 0I work 2nd shift in a long term care facility as an aide, and have been there for almost 3 years. My co-workers and I get along fantastic, and work together as a team, as we should. The only problem is one of our nurses. The nurse (whom I will refer to as "Sally") started with us about a year or so ago, and we thought that she was absolutely fantastic. She was attentive to our residents needs, and was willing to assist us with answering call lights, which we didn't and still don't, see a lot of. A few months ago, Sally's attitude toward us changed. She would befriend us to our face, and come the next morning, she would be in our DON's office complaining about having to answer a call light because we couldn't make it to that room fast enough, stating that we "sit too much" and we are "unprofessional". Word quickly got around that during nurse meetings that occur about twice a month, Sally would tell our DON and other nursing staff that we "walk all over her". We are unsure of how to handle this situation due to the fact that we keep our communication with her at a minimum, and we aren't sure why she would be saying these things about us. Our census has recently dropped which has left us with 1 aide for 30 people between 2p and 3p, followed by 2 aides from 3p to 10p on each side of the building with a float for each side. It is unreasonable for one to think that 1 person would hold the ability to answer every call light on a very heavy call light wing by themselves, but Sally thinks that it is below her (actions speak) to answer a call light, assist to BR, provide a blanket, etc. This nurse also seems to have me on target, so to speak. My co-workers and I strive to do and be the very best we can for our residents. We love them. However, it is extremely difficult to keep a positive attitude when the one place that you used to love to be has turned into the 6th level of Hell. If anyone has any suggestions on how to "co-exist" with this nurse, please inform me. We are all at our wits end and have all been looking for new jobs. This facility is draining us both mentally and physically. Add also, are there any aide to res ratio regulations in the state of Indiana? Thanks in advance!!
We have tried to no avail to consult our DON regarding these allegations. We have tried consulting our DON about Sally's work in general. It just makes her retaliate against us more. We are afraid to speak with her directly regarding what she has said and her actions because she has told us that if we give her any attitude we will be clocked out and sent home, and to consider that her verbal warning. Other nurses have agreed with us about her attitude and feel that something has got to be done, but we have no idea as to where to start.
- 1There are miserable poeple everywhere- they want everyone to be miserable, like they are. It's really a no-win situation. But- see if you can get that nurse into a room, for a talk. Ask her what the problem is. Tell her you know what's she doing, and that she's ruining the camaraderie in the place. Maybe she'll break down, maybe she's an addict, maybe her baby just died- or maybe she's just nasty. If that's the case- at least you tried. The DON isn't playing her cardss correctly, but really- I've seen very few who will even ask the direct care staff for their points of view.
- 0Apr 6, '13 by mvm2Is it possible for the other nurses to talk to the DON since they seem to think you aides are doing just fine and have your back. It might make the DON think twice to know if "Sally" is being unrealistic or wrong in her alligations. With the ranking system nurses are Higher on the ladder then the aides and the DON just might be willing to listen to the other nurses then the aides coming to her.
It is a shame as well that "sally" thought she had to go to the DON. I wish she would have came to you aides and explain how she was feeling. Maybe indeed she felt like she was being taken advantage of. If she would have gone to you maybe you all could have said we are sorry and were not aware of this and we will try harder not to make you feel this way. problem would have been solved
- 0And there lies the problem. If any of us try to ask her what her issue is, she will consider it an attitude and send us home. We used to think that it was because of menopause, but she has her hormones now so we have kind of checked that off of our list. Our DON is very close with a couple of our senior aides, both of which I work with daily, and they have made attempt after attempt to tell her what is going on and she just simply, ho-hum, over looks at and goes on about her day.
- 0We have tried to speak with other nurses, one of which I personally even took outside to conference with when I felt attacked by Sally in front of a resident's family member. This other nurse took Sally off to the side and asked her about everything, and Sally told her that it was "a misunderstanding" and it was "taken out of context". -- 2nd shift has always been "drama-free" since I have been there. All of the nurses and CNAs have gotten along wonderfully, as one big family. When Sally came in, she disrupted the environment and has caused us all to begin walking on eggshells, which has resulted in us being chastised for "bad attitudes". She stresses us out enough to bring us to tears (yesterday was a bad day). I have heard through the grapevine that she is on thin ice, so I'm wondering if maybe that might be the cause of her being hateful.
- 0Apr 6, '13 by GLORIAmunchkin72"I work 2nd shift in a long term care facility as an aide, and have been there for almost 3 years. My co-workers and I get along fantastic, and work together as a team, as we should. The only problem is one of our nurses. The nurse (whom I will refer to as "Sally") started with us about a year or so ago, and we thought that she was absolutely fantastic. She was attentive to our residents needs, and was willing to assist us with answering call lights, which we didn't and still don't, see a lot of. A few months ago, Sally's attitude toward us changed. She would befriend us to our face, and come the next morning, she would be in our DON's office complaining..." This is strangely familiar...
- 0Apr 6, '13 by mvm2I am so sorry. you LTC aides and nurses work to the bone and have so many other issues you need to deal with on a daily bases. Especially with 30 residents to one aide. i cringe at that ratio. Having one of your co workers act this way would drive anyone to the edge. Well if nothing changes and you simply can not handle it anymore maybe it is a time for a change and try to find another job. Maybe if enough aides leave the DON"s eyes will be opened up to what is happening around her. Otherwise if you love your job and want to keep it all I can say is try to stay out of her way and do what you can to be helpful to her. Try to be the gracious one as much as possible. Maybe something in her life has really changed and so she takes it out at work. Which is not right but people do it. There is just a flag there for me that tells me something is different. If when she first was there she was a great co worker and now she has changed something had to have happen to make these changes in her attitude. That would be the key to understanding all this if you knew what the root cause of all this was for her. I'd also work with the other nurses as much as possible.
- 1Apr 6, '13 by St_ClaireIt's my suggestion that the aides get together and make a list of the incidences with this nurse and all of you present it to the DON as a group. In the meantime, "kill her with kindness" so she has nothing to report in kind.
If the DON will not listen you may want to look elsewhere for a job. You did say this nurse is on thin ice so she may well be almost out the door, this might be the thing that pushes her through.
Good luck! It stinks to work with someone that is miserable.