Need to Vent: 3 Co-workers from Hell

  1. I don't want to sound mean, but I am at the end of my rope. I also realize that I am no Saint but...

    Co-worker # 1: Always calls out sick and frequently has to go home for a wide variety of reasons. Was scheduled 7p-3A. I as charge nurse told her she'd have to change assignments at 11 p.m. because of the type of staff coming on. I gave her the choice of two assignments. First she started crying and told me she could not would not take L/D triage. Ok well I'll look at the schedule again. Then I come back. Then she tells me she was not scheduled 11p-3A, only 7p-11p. THE SCHEDULE SAYS SHE IS. Oh she cries some more. She's sick. She can't stay. So, I who was only scheduled 7p-11p has to stay. Next day, i work and find out she was c/o'ing the night before to another co-worker that she was working the night in question until 3am!!

    Co-worker #2: She must have off every Sunday if at all possible, so she puts herself down to be off if census is low on the Sundays she is scheduled. Often census is low on Sunday, so this person gets off on many Sundays and c/o's if it is busy and she is called back in. She really needs off EVERY SUNDAY, IT'S the SABBATH. hmmm What religion does she think the rest of us belong to? She makes sure she gets to the list first to be off. What an advertisement for Christianity!!!

    Co-worker #3: RUDE is the word for this person. Likes to be in the nursery. Often makes lots of noise while you are doing a hearing test if she is not. Puts feet and legs all over the desk and reclines while reading a book. Recently told a patient that a bird did not fly over and put her call light on by accident. Pt. was 40-something lady w/ gyne surgery having abdomial pain. How dare she roll on that call light by accident? This person likes to tell everyone else what to do, yet always "needs help" to do her work and "doesn't know how to do a variety of difficult or unpleasant tasks" when they are assigned to HER, but comes over to tell you what to do if they are assigned to YOU.

    I am so sick of these three. Is it me? Do I let them get to me too much? I try to be subtle, but I am ready to take their heads off. Management tells us that we need to settle interpersonal issues amongst ourselves. I hate to report or get anyone into trouble, but I try to behave responsibly at work and I am really sick of these tree wanna-be queens. Any opinions. HELP!!!
    Last edit by imenid37 on Apr 9, '03
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  2. 29 Comments

  3. by   cindyln
    Oh I feel for you. At first I thought you worked the same place I do until you started talking about the nursery which we don't have. I suggest you talk to other co-workers and if they feel the same as you then all of you go to the nurse manager about these people. Good luck!
  4. by   sanakruz
    This helps me:
    I look for strengths VS weaknesses.

    Most people have at least ONE strength!

    I do this for my own sanity; otherwise I'd be homicidal on a weekly basis.
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I like the way Sanakruz thinks. I have one suggestion I might add:

    Perhaps you could benefit from reading a good book on dealing with difficult coworkers. There any number of them in the libraries and at Barnes and Noble. Sometimes, you cannot change them BUT you CAN change how you react to them, thus exerting some control over a tough situation. I wish you the best. Hang in there!
  6. by   imenid37
    Thanks I agree I have tried to ignore some of the things, esp. that #3 does. I have worked w/ her the longest. It is very difficult when you get busy and you have this selfish stuff to deal with. I would like to know what type of polite responses have worked for others. Sunday #1 wanted me to trade L/D triage w/ her. Sorry I said and smiled. I'll help you if you need it. I also pointed out that the physician of the day was in a great mood so she was lucky. I guess I am looking for polite techniques of resistance.
  7. by   fergus51
    I wish I could be like sanakruz. I generally just tell them exactly what I observe and think ("You are scheduled to work, so suck it up and be a professional, I am the one leaving at 11, buh bye"). It usually works for me, but I have to say one of the other nurses on the unit is the MASTER at manipulating these people. She has this way of complimenting them ("you are the best nurse on, so I want you to do triage because it is a position that demands experience and skills the others don't have"). I can't do it, they'd know I was lying anyways
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Get the books; there are many ways to deal with people like this and you want to do so effectively, not counter-productively. DO NOT SAY YOU ARE SORRY IF YOU ARE NOT AND DO NOT NEED TO BE...this will only make difficult people even MORE oppressive. BE HONEST AND TRUE TO YOURSELF. RESPECT yourself NOT to take crap from anyone. You will sleep better at night, but more importantly you will respect yourself more as will others. Really there are WAYS to handle folks like these! Learn how now.
  9. by   New CCU RN
    Originally posted by SmilingBluEyes
    Get the books; there are many ways to deal with people like this and you want to do so effectively, not counter-productively. DO NOT SAY YOU ARE SORRY IF YOU ARE NOT AND DO NOT NEED TO BE...this will only make difficult people even MORE oppressive. BE HONEST AND TRUE TO YOURSELF. RESPECT yourself NOT to take crap from anyone. You will sleep better at night, but more importantly you will respect yourself more as will others. Really there are WAYS to handle folks like these! Learn how now.

    Very well said!!
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Thank you newccu....

    another idea: attend a seminar about difficult people. There are always some around. Some are even designed specifically for NURSES. I wish you well!
  11. by   SKM-NURSIEPOOH
    just be honest & tell them exactly the way it is....whether charging or not. they don't seem to care about how you feel or think about them do they? so, the next time missy #1 tries to manipulate you into allowing her to leave early...just give her a few choses:

    1. work the shift and like it.
    2. work the shift and don't like it.
    3. leave & get written-up.

    as far as missy church goes...

    enough's enough! your don shouldn't even allow this to continue. there should be a rotating schedule sunday off for everyone! just who does she think she is anyway?

    about missy #3 or should i say queeny...
    ask her...when did the queen die & she take over? this is not her home & she may not lounge all over the furniture, speak to patients in that tone, & will adhere to the common courtesies of being a human being. ask her...what would her mother say about her attitude and behavior or did she do such a poor job at teaching her manners?

    cheers!
    moe
  12. by   ADN 2002
    She comes in at 7am, first thing she does is take a break. She sits down and eats. She eats all shift, she's always on a break. At the end of the shift, she's like well I need to go eat. (what??)She is constantly making personal phone calls (which becomes really distracting when I'm answering all the call bells constantly, and trying to chart at the same time) - she hangs on the phone all the time. She has people calling her all the time -- and they're rude to you when you pick up the phone and tell them they're going to have to hold on a second. She neglects the patients' needs, she neglects her teaching that she should be giving these patients -- so when I come on at 3 I'm having to rush around and pick up the slack and get the patients back on track so that my shift goes halfway smoothly -- and then I get chewed out b/c I'm late getting out sometimes. My nurse manager is aware of the problem, but does nothing about it. My DON is new and seems to be another one of these that isn't too interested in dealing with a problem such as this. She's also a PP nurse and enjoys hanging out in L&D when we have something "interesting" going on, such as a IUFD -- she has a sick sense of what's interesting. Meanwhile, the call lights are going off out on the floor.

    It is very much frustrating. Currently I'm working the day shift (and she comes in at 3) and -- what a surprise! - my shift goes MUCH more smoothly. Unfortunately, I go back to evenings soon. I wish my nurse manager would get the hint and put me on day shift, but that only helps me. I wish they would do the right thing and get rid of her - the unit would benefit as a whole.

    Just my opinion.
  13. by   mark_LD_RN
    I got a coworker similar to them with me,just tonight i had the urge to stangle her. but I am looking for a better way to solve my problem.
  14. by   imenid37
    well the "church lady" had a showdown this weekend when someone else claimed they had asked off first this past sunday. so now my manager will be forced to deal w/ her. what a super crock full of "you know what" this gal is. it is too bad because she is a pretty good nurse in many ways when she is not on the phone to her family. (another c/o others have had about her in the 6 short months she's been w/ us). i just wonder sometimes what goes on in people's heads that causes them to arrive at the conclusion that they are entitled to all sorts of special priviledges.
    i also have noticed that when one of these types recalls their experiences as a patient, they are usually very unsatisfied w/ the nursing care. wow maybe their nurse was on the phone and couldn't answer their call bell! yes mark, strangulation has also crossed my mind on a number of occasions w/ these three.

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