Magnet Help

  1. I am a new grad working in ICU and have been chosen to be my unit's Magnet ambassador. I'm supposed to set up the bullentin board for our unit and keep my coworkers excited about our application process. My problem is that most of my coworker have been on the unit 15yrs plus and could care less about our application. They don't think obtaining Magnet will change anything for them. How do I approach them without sounding like a naive new grad who will believe anything admin. puts before them? I do think that Magnet will be a great thing for our hospital and our unit. I want my coworkers to be proud of what we do everyday. Also, any suggestions for a great bulletin board theme? Thanks.
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    About nay537

    Joined: Jan '02; Posts: 26
    RN, Critical Care


  3. by   teeituptom
    What is a magnet ambassador
  4. by   CarlJ
    I am a pre-student nurse and volunteer at a magnet hospital in NJ. This is a second career for me. I only have a rough idea about what it takes to become a magnet hospital, but I do have many years of experienece implementing and championing other quality processes. So I know where you are coming from, trying to get the old guard to buy into a new process, especially if they don't see what's in it for them. I would not doubt that they have seen a lot of things come and go over the years that has not improved things much. So how is this idea going to be different?

    Actually, that's not a bad question. What do you think is going to change as a result of persuing the magnet? Why should the old guard get excited about this? What is in it for them?

    From what I understand, in a magnet hospital, nurses are much more involved in decision making processes that affect them. But that of course requires the full support of the management. Are the managers really supporting this? Are they willing to change how they do business with the nurses to make it happen? Do you and the nurses in general trust the managers? And with power comes responsibility. Are the nurses willing to put the extra effort into being an active part of the decision making process?

    My best advise would be for you to truely understand what is being done and why. Then as the notices come out about the various meeting and changes, it will make sense to you and you can better explain why this endevor is different and is important to them.
  5. by   llg

    I loved your post! As an old nurse who has seen a lot of these things come and go over the years, I completely understand where the staff is coming from.

    As a well-educated, scholarly, advanced-practice nurse, I have mixed feelings about the whole Magnet thing. I value most of what it tries to promote, but have serious questions about the process and the good it actually does. When you look under the surface, all is not as terrific as the people who make their livings/careers from the program try to tell you that it is.

    You seem to be a new member here. I look forward to "meeting" you again in other discussions.

  6. by   traumaRUs
    We too are doing the Magnet application. Emphasize what it will do for the bedside nurse: input to management re: scheduling, patient ratios, etc.. Emphasize the research opportunities, the educational benefits, etc.. Push the concept that your hospital will now be sought out as a wonderful nurse-friendly place to work. Good luck. PS - no I'm not a new grad - have been a nurse for 12 years in three states, three types of nursing. Have worked at some wonderful places and not so wonderful places. Feel magnet status will boost our hospital too as far as retaining and pulling in new nurses.
  7. by   kdo6905
    We recently received magnet status so good luck on the application process. It involves a lot of hard work on the part of everyone. We have some cool bulletin boards at work that you might try. On one someone put up pictures of different puppy dogs with little balloons coming out of their mouths and the balloons were filled with comments that had been put in the comment box by patients. For example a picture of a bassett hound saying, "I really liked my nurse Karen. She always had a smile and never hesistated to stop and take a moment to listen". Or we have another one where someone took a picture of all the nurses on the floor and then put up the comments from the patients next to them so then visitors, patients, and nurses could see who was saying nice things about who. I'm not sure if this was what your were looking for but it's just some ideas.
  8. by   renerian
    Wow that is tough one. Sometimes we old nurses are more skeptical.

  9. by   -jt
    <a naive new grad who will believe anything admin. puts before them?>

    Is this what management thinks and why you were picked for this project? Its a lot of hard work. The application process takes about 2 years. Magnet designation criteria were established to improve the working conditions and environment for staff RNs, but sometimes administrators forget that & just look at as another award to advertise and market to pull in more pts and better doctors. But if the administration is serious about changing its culture, improving its attitude towards nurses and improving their workplace, it can work well. Some Magnet Award winning facilities that have really walked the walk on the criteria and culture change, instead of just talking the talk during the application process even have waiting lists of nurses who want jobs there because the work environment for nurses and attitude of the entire facility towards nurses have been so improved.

    Check out these articles for ideas. Maybe even start by giving a copy to every nurse on your unit. They cant get excited about something if they dont know what it is:

    The Rules of Attraction
    Hospitals that refine their culture and policies can capture the coveted magnet status, turning their workplaces into RN havens and drawing more staff their way...

    Attracting Talent and Making it Stick - A WORKING MODEL
    the story of one of the first Magnet Award winners - The University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC) in Seattle and how the nurses did it.
    (American Nurses association website) -

    For more info on the Magnet program see:
    Last edit by -jt on Jul 10, '03
  10. by   2bPhD
    Ask the senior nurses for advice and help.
  11. by   NursShar1
    I have read some negative posts on other threads about Magnet status and the "hooplah" that ensues. Imagine me, a south Jersey gal, who has always worked in Philly and was trained in Philly. They taught us the philosophy of collaboration, not nurse bow down to thy physician. I joined the Air Force in 2000, and lived everywhere, and it was great. I just got out and am in San Antonio, Tx. All I can say about the difference here is OMG!!! I worked agency on the side for the last year of my Air Force commitment, and nurses in this city both do not get paid, nor do they have a voice. If you go against a doctor or do not jump through hoops when they walk into your ER, you better fear for your job, because administration takes their side. They bring the money to the hospitals, after all, right?

    When I interviewed for jobs (and trust me, I was interviewing the hospitals, not the other way around - there is a huge shortage here), I asked a lot of questions about their philosophy about what nursing brings to their health care facility. I am in my 12th year of nursing and this is a 2nd career for me. I am not the 21 year old new grad pushover that a local nursing school has brainwashed. I take my job seriously. I am an educated professional, and am a collaborative part of a multidisciplinary health care team that makes decisions about a patient's care. It is hard to stomach being a nurse in this city when you have my outlook on what it means to be a nursing professional.

    A head hunter directed me to a children's hospital here, and I checked it out. I was pleasantly surprised that they were applying for Magnet Status ( my research a year prior showed that there were NO Magnet hospitals any where NEAR this city). I continued to be impressed through hospital orientation that nurses seemed to be held in high esteem. I LOVE my job, and love what a hospital's being (or trying to be) Magnet does for nurses. I took for granted, being born, raised, and practicing nursing in the northeast corridor of the US, that nurses were respected. If anyone up there wants to go back to work and feel good about the hospitals up there, just take a short travel assignment down this way, and it will do that for ya, I promise! I am just thrilled that I found the one hospital that has seen the light, and realizes that its nurses are what makes the place tick. The job satisfaction is high in my hospital, and turnover is low. We do work hard, but staffing issues are dealt with seriously. We have the supplies we need to do our job. Nurses are also held accountable as professionals, as they should be. The more senior nurses are expected to be mentors and teachers, if they want to advance in the clinical ladder. I do believe in this. If someone wants to just sit there and be a bedside nurse and not do another thing, then stay in your rung of the clinical ladder and take annual pay increases by percent, not ladder rung. No problem. I had to do all of these things as a nurse in the Air Force, but I did not get paid any extra do to them. I also had to come in on my own time for committee meetings, UNPAID. My outlook as a civilian nurse is being happy that I get paid for committee meetings, coming in to make posters, and get more pay on the clinical ladder scale for taking more responsibilities (I guess doing the same things for free in the past will change anyone's outlook???).

    My advice to you is to go to the websites posted above, and do some research on what it means for a hospital to have Magnet status. Then understand that there are good and bad ones out there. Try to stay in the line of thinking of your hospital "walking the walk" and doing it for real. Consult with some of the senior nurses that seem approachable. You will do great!