Well, FWIW, Angie, I'm now a manager myself, and I think I'm a better one because of the things that have happened to me. When one of my staff is having problems, I prefer to sit that person down privately and ask them how're they're feeling and what's been happening in their lives, rather than go on the offensive with something like "The other staff/residents/family members are complaining about you........" or "You didn't do________". Even when I HAVE to discipline someone, I involve the staff member in the process--I'll ask them how they would proceed if they were in my shoes (funny, they are always harsher on themselves than I would be!) and encourage them to take ownership of the situation.
So far, I think this approach has gotten good results---I don't feel that anyone on my staff, even the few workers whom I've counseled or warned, resents or disrespects me, yet they know I mean what I say, and there haven't been any 'repeat offenses'. Plus, I'm much quicker to praise than to criticize.........and that's where I think SO many nurse managers go wrong. They tend to jump on people when something's NOT done, rather than be happy when it IS done. Maybe I overdo it, but I take time to notice when things go right and thank the staff for making it happen.
A very great lady I used to know when I was young had a motto that has come in handy at many times in my life, especially when my kids were growing up: FIND THE GOOD, AND PRAISE IT. It's not always easy to do when your child (or your staff member!) is doing almost everything wrong, but I think it's a duty to try to find something praiseworthy and then say so, even if it's a minor thing like "Wow, Johnny, at least THIS time you kept the mud confined to the entryway and didn't track it into the living room":wink2: . As adults, we should be mature enough to do our jobs and know that we're doing them well; however, it never hurts to get a pat on the back once in a while, rather than just a kick in the pants!