Should i go over my manager's head

  1. 2
    I have been having issues with my manager for a while now, and i am reaching the point of no return. I think she wants to get rid of me and i dont know what to do. I started on this floor as a new RN seven years ago and loved it up until six months ago. Our old manager was a sweetheart. She trusted us to do a good job, and didn't ride us at all. She retired a year ago, and the manager from the unit across the hall took us over while administration looked for the "right" person. This manager started six months ago and it has been horrible here since. She is always out on the floor sticking her nose in everything, and talking to patients about how they like there care. Its like she doesn't trust us and is checking up on us. We are not allowed to sit at the desk to chart. Instead we have to take our work stations and stay outdise our rooms. That wouldn't be to bad, but we are not even aloud to have a cup of coffee or a coke while we chart. I had never been wrote up in the past, but she has wrote me up twice. For forgetting to wash my hands, and because she said i was rude to some students. She critisizes my charting and my care plans. She hired a lot of new people, and plays favorites with them. I used to do a lot of committee work, but now i am only on one committee, and she gave some of my committees to her favorites. The last straw was this morning when i asked her to sign the renewal for my clinical step. I have been a Step Two for six years, and never had a problem before. If she doesn't sign it, i will take a 5 percent pay cut. She wont sign because of my attitude and the write ups. The write ups are not fair, and the only reason i have a bad attitude is because of her. I am not the only one who feels this way about her. Two other RNs who have been here a long time feel the same way. I am really upset about my Step Two though. I want to make an appointment with the CNO to see if she will talk to the manager about this situation. If anyone else has been through something like this, how did it turn out? Am I wasting my time?
    rn2bn07 and lindarn like this.
  2. 66 Comments so far...

  3. 8
    I did that once. I now have a new job. Is is worth it? Only you can answer that, but I would make sure you have a back up plan before going over their head.
  4. 9
    Writing you up for not washing hands and disrespectful to students is valid. So is asking Pts how their care is. Thats a manager's main job now.
  5. 0
    Our old manager never did this, and we did fine. We worked hard and took good care of our patients. I think care has got worse since we are worried about her looking over our shoulder and less focused on my patients.
  6. 8
    Wow, sorry to hear about all the changes. It does sound as if the new manager is trying to enforce the right things though, which I realize may be hard to hear. The prior manager's style may have been a little too laid back. Some of the new rules you listed are things truly expected in most places. There may be a time of adjusting as the staff has to tighten up and have policies enforced stronger than what you are used to. Try a little introspection and look at the policies in your facility. Is the manager out in left field or is there some room for improvement and change is a hard thing to accept no matter what. Human nature resists change.

    Plus to be honest, it is hard whenever there is a major change in management and administration. There is an adjustment period for the staff and the new director. It may help to realize that it is not you but just the way things are most of the time when there is a change in leadership. I have survived through some major changes throughout my nursing years and sometimes you can work through it and find a common ground and sometimes there is a personality conflict and the new managers want to get rid of the previous staff and start over. It is the way life is and it is not what you do or don't do sometimes.

    If you can ride it out and adjust to the changes then hang in there. Who knows, the manager may decide to leave. If it is really beyond what you want to emotionally invest yourself in then request a transfer. If there is an ethics committee or hot line that you can call or if you trust human resources to keep the issue confidential, horizontal violence and disrespect by peers or supervisors is not tolerated now and you can talk to them.

    If you do talk to an ethics hotline or HR, have specific circumstances in mind and dates and any witnesses that may have been there. Going over a managers head can cause more problems than it solves if not done correctly. Good luck.
    GrnTea, sharpeimom, llg, and 5 others like this.
  7. 13
    It sounds like your unit lacked strong leadership for a long time, and now that you have a manager who wants to provide that leadership, you and some of your coworkers are having a hard time adjusting. As others have already said, this can be difficult. You say you were providing good care before, but on what are you basing that assertion? How did your nursing sensitive indicators compare to national benchmarks? What were your patient satisfaction scores like? You say she hired a lot of new staff. That tells me you had high staff turnover, which is an indicator of poor staff satisfaction. These are all things that a manager will work to improve. Did you have a verbal warning before you were written up? If she placed others in charge of some of the committees you had chaired, was this done to allow others to participate? Or perhaps it was done because she thought you had too many responsibilities to devote enough time to each of them. Going to the CNO is not a good idea. You will probably not get the results you want, and may be labeled as a troublemaker. All of the managers I work with have too many obligations to put time and energy into deliberately targeting one person. As I see it, you have two options. Meet with your manager and have an honest conversation about her expectations and how you can meet them. Or look for another job.
    GrnTea, sharpeimom, Altra, and 10 others like this.
  8. 5
    Quote from Teacher Sue
    As I see it, you have two options. Meet with your manager and have an honest conversation about her expectations and how you can meet them. Or look for another job.
    I agree. This is the professional manner to handle a concern of this nature. Go sit down with the boss and try to work it out, try to figure out what the expectations are, and try to determine if these are expectations you can live with. If you are not satisfied after this meeting you can certainly go above the managers head - but be prepared because that just might backfire. This will really be true if you complain about being wrote up but YOU were actually wrong, ie: being rude to students really is unprofessional and not washing your hands is also not acceptable.

    A good manager should be out there asking the patients if they are receiving good care. It's not even necessarily about checking up on you....many times it is simply resolving silly misunderstandings that patients get upset about just because they don't know the routine or what they should realistically expect.

    If a manager is not managing the care then what do you think he/she should be doing? (I would really be interested in your answer to this).
    GrnTea, kids, himilayaneyes, and 2 others like this.
  9. 6
    I noticed that you recently posted that you regularly falsify documentation--which you call "creative charting"--to be honest, I would take a good look at your practice. It must be difficult to work for someone you feel doesn't trust you. Talk to her and see if she is willing to put her money where her mouth is, so to speak, and help you improve your practice. It may be that she has an uncomfortable manner and is lacking in management skills--I have seen that in people who are truly trying to do a good job but aren't able to gain the support of the staff in what should be common goals. That's her problem. But find out what she has to offer you and use it to become an even better nurse.
    Merlyn, GrnTea, sharpeimom, and 3 others like this.
  10. 2
    Quote from Ladybluebell
    Our old manager never did this, and we did fine. We worked hard and took good care of our patients. I think care has got worse since we are worried about her looking over our shoulder and less focused on my patients.

    This is a new manager and this is what she wants to do, I really dont see the harm in a lot of what shes doing. The way I am interpreting this situation is you dont seem receptive to change and where there is something you dsagree with, its really only because your old manager never did it that way. I think its starting to reflect in your attitude, which in turn will reflect on your evaluations. The write ups as petty as they seem are certainly legitimate and it sucks to have something so small on your record but you should be using this as an opportunity to strive to work harder, do what is expected from your current manager. You need to SHOW your manager that you are growing/changing from the write up.


    You shouldnt be worried about her looking over your shoulder. If you do things right, it shouldnt really be an issue. Its a learning opportunity and you can find room for improvement.
    RNperdiem and lindarn like this.
  11. 5
    The new manager is doing exactly what should be done. Talking to the patients is a good thing. Making sure staff comply with handwashing is a GOOD thing. As a poster said above, both of those write up were absolutely valid. Neither would be tolerated at my unit.

    Please take a honest look at yourself, your attitude and practice. If you want to salvage your current job I suggest you let your manager know that you realize you were in the wrong and that it won't happen again. And then make it your business to see that it doesn't.


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