This isn't an easy topic, nor is the answer a simple one. Multitudes of opinions and as much variety of answers as we have personalities. Here are a few I think might help with recruitment AND retention.
Stop the fighting with each other.
Earn the respect of our patients, our coworkers, the physicians and the hospital.
Set a better example by not tolerating the verbal abuse of new nurses (new grads or just new to the area).
Stop the abuse and the response it gets.
Make nursing appealing by speaking out about the rewards--the small ones are really BIG ones. The feeling deep inside when you help that patient with his/her problem.
Walk the walk of pride and joy.
Speak to children about your joy at schools. Encourage children to do well in math and science because it is the understanding of these skills that provides the basis for the "job" we do.
Stop "eating our young" and stop placing blame on others.
Take small steps everyday towards making a difference in nursing.
Get involved in POSITIVE actions.
Make the committment for change within yourself and keep the momentum going by living it in little ways all day, everyday.
Join in with a solution that you believe in and accept the support.
Be cautious of anyone telling you "this will solve all our problems". There is not one solution that will do this unless you could say our own individual practice can...