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Manager Woes

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by WriterRN WriterRN, BSN (New) New Nurse

Specializes in Surgical, Healthcare for people of Faith, BreastCA. Has 19 years experience.

Since I started my current job we've had 3 managers. The first two were terrible. We were so exited to get the 3rd one. She seemed invested and interested in helping us improve our department. For the first 4 months or so, she was fabulous. Then things started going down hill. Our department has suffered with the last two managers and needs a major overhaul. It would be difficult for an experienced manager, but this 3rd one is new. She's only getting worse and now most of the nursing staff hate her. I think she still has potential, but needs help, and a kick in the pants. But, I know a lot of her focus is on climbing the ladder and looking good to get the next job she wants. Is it worth it to try to help her? And how would I help her without seeming like I'm helping her? 

Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience.

Why would you help management? That chick has an agenda that has nothing to do with you or the patients.

Keep your head low, do your job and go home.

Sour Lemon

Has 9 years experience.

2 hours ago, JMCobbRN said:

Since I started my current job we've had 3 managers. The first two were terrible. We were so exited to get the 3rd one. She seemed invested and interested in helping us improve our department. For the first 4 months or so, she was fabulous. Then things started going down hill. Our department has suffered with the last two managers and needs a major overhaul. It would be difficult for an experienced manager, but this 3rd one is new. She's only getting worse and now most of the nursing staff hate her. I think she still has potential, but needs help, and a kick in the pants. But, I know a lot of her focus is on climbing the ladder and looking good to get the next job she wants. Is it worth it to try to help her? And how would I help her without seeming like I'm helping her? 

Let's hope she doesn't come to this site, especially if that's your real picture. You might be the one who ends up getting "helped" with a kick in the pants.  😉

I suspect there's someone higher up making it impossible for these managers to succeed. The fact that they've hired someone with no experience after two recent departures is a big red flag in itself.

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 29 years experience.

29 minutes ago, Been there,done that said:

Why would you help management? That chick has an agenda that has nothing to do with you or the patients.

Keep your head low, do your job and go home.

Understandable, but what the manager does often affects the job to be done, which directly affects the worker bees. Might it be in the staff nurse's best interests to selectively "help" the management? (If it means influence, that is...)

JMCobb, You may want to change your user name to something that doesn't identify you, and remove your photo.  🙂 

Hannahbanana, BSN, MSN

Specializes in Physiology, CM, consulting, nsg ED, LNC, COB. Has 51 years experience.

An organization that has three unit managers in two years has problems that are higher up than just that unit. The managers are either not competent (but maybe cheap to hire), inexperienced (ditto), unsupported (red flag) or otherwise hamstrung in their abilities to effect positive changes. Somebody is breathing down their necks, and maybe somebody higher up is doing some heavy breathing too. 
Time to polish the resume and start looking around.

Agree with the advice to change your posting name and photo stat. You have no idea who could be reading this. If you’re new here and need help, ask the admins. 

WriterRN, BSN

Specializes in Surgical, Healthcare for people of Faith, BreastCA. Has 19 years experience.

Thankyou for your advice! Especially about my picture and name. It's something I never even considered!

On 4/27/2021 at 8:19 AM, JMCobbRN said:

Is it worth it to try to help her?

It isn't so much a matter of helping or not helping. It's a matter of agreeing or not agreeing to expend efforts towards a project that has already been sabotaged.

What you can do is not contribute to the hate. Do your part to remain professional, take the best care of patients that you can. Be discerning in what to worry about and what not to with regard to the business and goings-on of the unit. People who foment hate and angst are not doing the right thing either.

She'll get promoted soon enough. Just hang in there. If you can't tolerate whatever is going on then look for a better atmosphere in which to work.

👍🏽

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

A lot of positions I had held went through more than one manager. In some, I ran the gamut and sometimes made my position almost indispensable.

On the other side of the coin, in one position, I worked as a NS for medical services and the methadone clinic at a community mental health clinic in one of my last positions. I was hired by one medical director, worked with another, and trained two others.

The final medical director wanted to change several procedures that I had worked a year on to successfully tweak. This Doc had worked previously solely in research and had a parochial perspective, was  limited in his knowledge and understanding, of the whole picture.

I stuck to my guns, we butted heads, and I was eventually terminated, but good riddance to that position. I got another position which paid more with less work and stayed there for 17 years.

TriciaJ, RN

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 40 years experience.

I would "help" the manager by being a top-notch employee and maintaining a professional relationship.  If you can't help things to improve, then at least you don't have to contribute to the chaos.

I agree with the previous posters that she may have arrived all dewy-eyed and is now getting her leash jerked by the upper crust.  While you're riding this out, waiting for the next boon or catastrophe, start looking around at what's out there.  It's always good to have a backup plan if things become suddenly intolerable.

CommunityRNBSN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Community health. Has 3 years experience.

I’ve been at my current job for about two years and I am on my SIXTH nurse manager. The people in administration just make their lives a living hell. At first I was all excited that each new person was going to solve problems, but now I just say “Nice to meet you” and start counting the days until they storm out. 

amoLucia

Specializes in LTC.

23 hours ago, CommunityRNBSN said:

 .....  but now I just say “Nice to meet you” and start counting the days until they storm out. 

Sounds like you could start a pool and make some money on the side with your predictions! :))

klone, MSN, RN

Specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership. Has 15 years experience.

Unit level management is a thankless job. I question myself daily as to why I continue doing it. The only thing keeping me in this role is knowing that I am one of the good ones, and that I make a tiny difference, and every day in the job is one day that the nurses are "protected" from the higher ups, and can just do their job (because at its basic level, that's what I consider my job as unit manager to be - the protector of the staff).

TriciaJ, RN

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 40 years experience.

On 5/2/2021 at 11:01 AM, CommunityRNBSN said:

I’ve been at my current job for about two years and I am on my SIXTH nurse manager. The people in administration just make their lives a living hell. At first I was all excited that each new person was going to solve problems, but now I just say “Nice to meet you” and start counting the days until they storm out. 

And the ones who work the hardest to advocate for their staff will be shown the door that much sooner.

Hannahbanana, BSN, MSN

Specializes in Physiology, CM, consulting, nsg ED, LNC, COB. Has 51 years experience.

6 hours ago, TriciaJ said:

And the ones who work the hardest to advocate for their staff will be shown the door that much sooner.

Not necessarily-- the best nurse manager I ever had was promoted from night charge to head nurse. Because she'd been on nights for awhile a lot of us didn't really know her. The first thing she said to us in her first staff meeting was that she knew how very good we were, that we did what she couldn't do, and if there were ever anything we needed or wanted to trial, to ask. She was as good as her word. Had an idea about how to do somethiing better? "OK, give it a try and let me know how it works out." Eventually she eneded up as DON for the whole hospital. She was terrific. Loved you, Laurie Gunderson!