The Night Shift Witches.... scheduling dilemmas

  1. :angryfire I am super angry at my night shift. I have never met such a mean group of people. As the manager and the person who does the schedule I placed a request for the staff to cover 2 days that the hospital was offering the CCRN coarse. I had night workers who are not going to the coarse and who stated they really are not interested request off on the days others would need so they could go. Since the place has a union all requests are driven from the most to least senior person. It may actually come to pass that some of the staff signed up for the coarse may not be able to go. Knowing the staff I know that this is just a spitting contest. They get even worse. Our night shift's holiday is the eve, and they are not required to work an eve and a day. So when it comes time for signing up no one signs up to work the actual day. They also do not pencil themselves in for the unofficial holidays such as Easter or Mother's day. The rule is the least senior person gets to work. The olders nurses never sign up, the younger nurses never get one holiday at all, and the unit never keeps the newer blood that we hired. I have seen nurses purposely request a night off that is already short so that someone with less seniority can not have that time off. I am not new to this world of nursing and the back stabbing that goes with it, but when will these nurses grow up and start helping each other out? My hands are tied because of the union. I am wondering what other places do with their holiday schedule, and how do you keep newer staff happy and not feeling like they are dumped on all the time?

    Thanks-littlecheese
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    About littlecheese

    Joined: Aug '06; Posts: 14
    Assistant Nurse Manager in ICU
    Specialty: Critical Care/long term care

    14 Comments

  3. by   gonzo1
    in our ER if we work Easter one year, we get it off the next. They do this with every holiday. Also if you work xmas day, you get xmas eve off, if you work new years day you get the eve off and vice versa. Off course with the union and everything based on seniority that probably would fly.
    It's a shame the group is so mean.
  4. by   TazziRN
    We alternate holidays. For T-Day and Christmas we work one and have the other off one year, the next year it flips. No seniority involved, it just is. And we are union too.
  5. by   berniemcr
    Where I am you must work 1 summer holiday (Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day) and 1 winter holiday for day and night shift. If you are on evenings 3-11, you must work 2 holidays because Christmas Eve and New Years Eve are also holidays. Easter is non-existant although it is a Catholic Hospital.

    A list goes up well in advance and with the holidays on it and you fill in your preference 1-2-3 etc. It is time and a half for holidays and if you don't work and it is your scheduled day, you go to your STO. I have only been there 5 months but it seems to work so far (at least summer) but there is no union.
  6. by   Sylv
    This is off the topic but reminds me of something.

    One year I planned on going with two of my sisters, we are all in the south, to the very north of this country, to see our mother, who has since passed, also one of the sisters has passed.

    This one nurse asked me when I was planning on taking the vacation time, stupid me, I told her and the next thing I knew she had requested that time, and of course she got it because she had seniority. So I did not get to go, and that was one less time that I had to spend with my mother.

    I can only hope that that nurse got it back in some way, karma.
  7. by   banditrn
    Quote from berniemcr
    Where I am you must work 1 summer holiday (Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day) and 1 winter holiday for day and night shift. If you are on evenings 3-11, you must work 2 holidays because Christmas Eve and New Years Eve are also holidays. Easter is non-existant although it is a Catholic Hospital.

    A list goes up well in advance and with the holidays on it and you fill in your preference 1-2-3 etc. It is time and a half for holidays and if you don't work and it is your scheduled day, you go to your STO. I have only been there 5 months but it seems to work so far (at least summer) but there is no union.
    That's pretty much how we did it at the union hospital where I worked. Also no one was allowed to take vacation over Christmas.
  8. by   rjflyn
    First off i would say read the contract. Personally you are the boss and nothing says you have to grant any time off.

    Rj
  9. by   littlecheese
    That is good advice, except the language of the contract is not clear. The union has one grievances based on what has been done in the past, and in this case the least senior person have worked. The night shift are the worse when it comes to this. For example, one staff member has requested off Halloween which is not an official holiday. Her children are grown, she has her sister pass out candy, and when I asked her why? she scheduled herself instead of working for one of the mother's with small children she simply said because I have more seniority and "they" need to know what it is like. I say why? Why not be nice to each other. When I worked in the city near me I never worked Christmas or Halloween, others did and I did for them when they needed something.
    I guess if nurses were actually nice to each other the profession would have gone farther.
    Does anyone work in an unit that gets along fairly well? If so I would love to hear the hows, and whats-
  10. by   sunnyjohn
    Quote from Sylv
    This is off the topic but reminds me of something.

    One year I planned on going with two of my sisters, we are all in the south, to the very north of this country, to see our mother, who has since passed, also one of the sisters has passed.

    This one nurse asked me when I was planning on taking the vacation time, stupid me, I told her and the next thing I knew she had requested that time, and of course she got it because she had seniority. So I did not get to go, and that was one less time that I had to spend with my mother.

    I can only hope that that nurse got it back in some way, karma.
    Wow... what a sly rat bazzzztad she was!:angryfire
  11. by   htrn
    I must be very naive and very lucky. I work in a wonderful unit, we all help each other out whenever possible and there is not a nurse there I would not be comfortable with taking care of my family. The turn over is extremely low. In 5 years, four colleagues have retired and three came back to work part time. We lost one nurse to another floor (personality conflict with a doc), another nurse to a too busy teaching schedule, and an LPN that got her RN and found a hubby in another city along the way.

    We work every other holiday and every other weekend - holidays take precedence over weekends. We have a request book that we can request days off, PTO, etc... Our scheduler will do everything in her power to make sure we get our PTO, requests, etc. We do have to make our own switches for weekends though. We switch weekends and holidays with each other to help out if we can. We go on vacations together, plan campouts with each others families, go to concerts together and for many of us, we are our own support group.

    When I was a student doing clinicals I asked them what the 'real deal' was. Everyone seemed like such good friends and got along soooo well. The told me it wasn't a front, one nurse told me in the 24 years she worked in that unit she never missed a child's event that she really wanted to go to. Nursed have been there for, in this unit, for 20, 30, 40+ years.

    I have never not been able to find someone to work for me if I needed off for some reason - and in exchange, I go out of my way to help them out too. I am soooo sorry for other nurses that work in a cut throat environment - talk about eating your young - that type of behavior is intolerable. Good luck.
  12. by   sunnyjohn
    Quote from obrnheather
    I must be very naive and very lucky. I work in a wonderful unit, we all help each other out whenever possible and there is not a nurse there I would not be comfortable with taking care of my family. The turn over is extremely low. In 5 years, four colleagues have retired and three came back to work part time. We lost one nurse to another floor (personality conflict with a doc), another nurse to a too busy teaching schedule, and an LPN that got her RN and found a hubby in another city along the way.

    We work every other holiday and every other weekend - holidays take precedence over weekends. We have a request book that we can request days off, PTO, etc... Our scheduler will do everything in her power to make sure we get our PTO, requests, etc. We do have to make our own switches for weekends though. We switch weekends and holidays with each other to help out if we can. We go on vacations together, plan campouts with each others families, go to concerts together and for many of us, we are our own support group.

    When I was a student doing clinicals I asked them what the 'real deal' was. Everyone seemed like such good friends and got along soooo well. The told me it wasn't a front, one nurse told me in the 24 years she worked in that unit she never missed a child's event that she really wanted to go to. Nursed have been there for, in this unit, for 20, 30, 40+ years.

    I have never not been able to find someone to work for me if I needed off for some reason - and in exchange, I go out of my way to help them out too. I am soooo sorry for other nurses that work in a cut throat environment - talk about eating your young - that type of behavior is intolerable. Good luck.
    See, this is the kind of unit I hope I get hired into when I graduate. It sounds like they stick around for 20+ years BECAUSE they have professioanl courtesy, collegiality and are downright decent human beings. What better recruiting tool than this.

    *praying that she gets a unit like this*
  13. by   fiestynurse
    Workplace bullying has been defined as offensive behavior through vindictive, cruel, malicious or humiliating ways to undermine an individual or group of employees. These older more senior nurses are abusing their power and engaging in workplace bullying or harrassment.

    The abuse of power can cause chronic stress and anxiety, so that the less senior or younger employees gradually lose their self confidence and don't believe in themselves. It's not good for the team as a whole. Some will tough it out, but many will eventually quit.

    Examples of bullying/harassment behavior are:
    *Spreading malicious rumours or insulting someone
    *Ridiculing or demeaning someone, generally picking on an individual or group.
    *Exclusion or victimization
    *Unfair treatment
    *Missuse of power and seniority
    *Unwelcome sexual advances
    *Making threats
    *Deliberately undermining a competent worker - overloading them with work
    *Preventing individuals from progressing to a higher level of achievement

    This is where management and unions can work together to improve the working conditions for all. Set-up a meeting to talk about the issues. Why are the night shift nurses so angry and mean? I would want to know what is driving it? I think this is a quality of care issue because less people are able to attend the CCRN course to enhance their knowledge and skills to improve their patient care. Why are the senior nurses threatened by this?
  14. by   Elisheva
    Please don't be offended but misspellings are a pet peeve of mine, mostly because it was drilled into our heads as nursing students that misspellings reflected poorly on our charting. The word "coarse" refers to inferior quality or a rough texture, so I think the word you want to use would be "course." Just trying to be helpful. I'm really not a mean old witch nurse.

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