Nepotism and the Workplace

Specialties LTC Directors


Specializes in drug seekers and the incurably insane..

Hi, I have been working in a LTC for psych patients for these last few years, and I'm posting this here because I want some absolutely honest answers from DONs or other nurse managers. Where I work seems that if one is good friends with the HR person, the Administrator, or other person in a position of authority, then that particular individual gets promoted, ideal schedules, and gets out of write-ups. These individuals all party together, and there is not one person in a management position that is not in this group. As managers, what type of boundaries do you have with co-workers? Do any friendships factor in when a promotion is available? I'm just curious. Thank you.

Specializes in Psych (25 years), Medical (15 years).


Separation of personalities and principles occurs in a Perfect World.

In the Real World, it's not what you know, but who you know.

Such is life.


Specializes in Gerontology, Med surg, Home Health.

Friendship plays no part in scheduling or promotions or discipline at my facility. People are judged on the quality of their work not on the people they party with. It's great to be friendly with your co-workers, but at the end of the day, it's still my responsibility to make sure they are doing what they should be doing while they are at work. If they aren't, then friend or not, they will get spoken to (written up, counseled, whatever you call it where you work).

Specializes in medsurg, everything in LTC.

While there tends to be a certain "circle of friends", the line should not be crossed as to blindly favor one over another coworker without thought for ability and skills. I have in the past warned a coworker and a friend that I would hold interviews for a certain position and if a better candidate came along, then I would have no choice but to give the position to the new person rather than her. She understood......But I have also witnessed inept staff move ahead strictly because of connection or just because they new how to play the game and knew how and who to kiss up to.

Like Dave said, there is the perfect world, then there is the real world...........

Specializes in acute care and geriatric.

I have seen that kind of behavior and it is not professional. If you work with managers who favor their 'friends' ( and they will never know if these people like them for themselves or for the favorable work conditions they provide ) then I suggest you start getting in with the in-crowd- or find another job. There is no one you can report this too, there is no real way of proving this, and if you get on the wrong side of even one of them, they will band together to make your life miserable. I am sorry that you landed in such a place. I don't ascribe to this practice, and find it reprehensible and dangerous. Unfortunately you will not succeed in changing them.

Good luck!

Specializes in drug seekers and the incurably insane..

I've no interest in being a part of the "in crowd". Did it when I was in high school.....too old for that now!! I do my job and try to do it right. I don't have a bad relationship with the management clique, I just prefer having no relationship at all. It's worked these last 3 years, I guess. I don't really make any waves. The times I've been in "trouble" I've gotten out of because I was able to disprove the accusation. Almost got wrote up for not having the correct amt. of CE's.....had all the certificates to prove it. They pigeon-holed that one. I just hate to see incompetent individuals being in positions of power because of whom their "best friend forever" is. It's the way the world works though.... Thank you for all your replies and insight.:nurse:

Specializes in acute care and geriatric.


You asked for honest answers, so I gave it, but it sounds like you dont have a problem, you do your work, you are not interested in a personal relationship with anyone at work, dont have a negative relationship with management, it sounds like you CYA with sound documentation (great policy) so why care about nepotism? Again, you will not succeed in changing them.

As I wrote, it is unprofessional but exists. You did want honest (the real world) not ideal!

Well, who you know and what you know can be king in this industry. This is not something you have control over. Although morally flawed it is not breaking any rule or regulation. As you know not getting personally involved with employees and residents is the best policy. Complaints of sexual harassment can ruin your career. Getting sexually involved with a resident can put your nursing license in jeopardy at the least or worse yet land you in jail. In my entire career I never crossed those lines because I realized that my need to protect the res. and to provide for my family came first.

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