Although a bummer at times, but my last employer does not allow personal references at all, and even if you leave you sign a agreement that you will not give personal references from anything during that time at the facility. This saved me from all these references, but there were a few I really wanted to give a great reference to...especially for entry into RN school!
They said that it is too easy to violate HIPAA giving reference to the workings at the facility...yadda yadda...uhg! What if someone uses a reference about a certain pt and that patients name came up or described the patient in a way they could be identified. Plus that organization was pretty clouded in mystery and wierd anyway (a fraternal organization, very old fraternal organization who likes to keep things in their circles private...even if it is a medical facility with private pay non members in it as pts!).
I was able finally to overcome the deal, and tread in the grey...I got to know those whom I would give a reference to personally outside of work...so I can be a personal reference outside of the work arena and if their work ethics and hard work...which I could see as a friend...came into question I could answer it by simply being a very close friend
*wink* That has worked well!
As far as me...I couldn't get any references from 4 years of working hard...but I told that to my now employer at the start, and all these rules they had on even confirming I worked there (it was red tape galore for just checking if I actually was an employee there) was proof to them that their politics and management was goofy!!!!! LOL!!!!!!