Useless manager or have I misplaced my backbone?


  • Specializes in Peds, PICU, NICU, CICU, ICU, M/S, OHS.... Has 14 years experience.

So a while ago, I was pulled into THE office by my manager. She stated that another nurse came to her and said that I did not respond to a patient emergency because I was too busy "spending time" with another patient. Apparently, I must really suck as a nurse according to her testimony to my manager.

So, after listening to this TOTAL line of B to the S, I informed my manager of the actual events of that afternoon. Regardless, she reprimanded me and her decision has had a detrimental effect on me and other patients as well.

AFTER our conversation and after she spoke to her manager, she talked to another person who was an EYEWITNESS to the event in question. That individual totally corroborated and validated EVERYTHING that I told her that happened.

Well, of course this person couldn't go back to their manager and tell them "I made a mistake about this situation, it seems Sofla98 did, in fact, respond to the situation and totally handled it the way she does. We're lucky that we have her on the team." SHE DID NOTHING to remedy the situation. NOTHING. I'm guessing that she never went back to her manager and said anything to her about it.

The sad part is, I have done nothing either. Can someone help me find my backbone? You know, the one that would always stand straight up and say, hey you listen up (in a professional way, that is)!

Any advice is appreciated, especially from those seasoned nurses like myself. I think all of those years of "eating the young" thing has finally come right back 'round and bit us all in the *ss.

Thank you :)


38,333 Posts

I don't know what you should do, but get a nagging feeling that you need to follow up, in writing if need be, to make certain to counteract any detrimental pieces of paper placed into your file. I have seen before that people are caught off guard when something(s) "surfaces" at evaluation time. You know that no one will look out for you if you do not.


66 Posts

Specializes in Peds, PICU, NICU, CICU, ICU, M/S, OHS.... Has 14 years experience.

I am going to. the thing is, my manager really really needs some help with her ADHD problem. I am being serious. She is a hot mess and I have no idea how they pick these people to be managers. They are training this one nurse to be in charge. I am so worried of how those days will go when she is in charge. She hates to work, does NOTHING to help ANYONE, and will delegate EVERYTHING she can to the cna's even if they are not assigned to her patients. If they don't do it, well then she runs and tattles to the managers. I would change jobs in a minute, however, I have way too much on my plate at the moment (in school FT working on my masters, family things, life) and really just want to stick it out for a little longer until I am done w/school. Thanks for the info. I will f/u this week...If I cannot be an advocate for myself, then how can be an advocate for anyone else?

Double-Helix, BSN, RN

1 Article; 3,377 Posts

Specializes in PICU, Sedation/Radiology, PACU. Has 12 years experience.

You mentioned that you were reprimanded and that has had negative effects on you and other patients. What do you mean?

Reprimanded is usually a word to describe verbally corrected. Written up or disciplined might make me think of a formal complaint or a part of your file.

It sounds that all that happened here is someone lied to the manager about you, and she bought it and got upset with you. If what was said is not the truth, what really matters is that YOU know it wasn't the truth. Yes, it hurts when other people, especially our boss and coworkers think badly of us. But this is one coworker and your manager has probably forgotten about it. Since it happened "a while ago," it doesn't really make sense to try to rectify anything now.

So please correct me if I am wrong, but it sounds like you are holding on to this one bad situation and letting it affect your performance. The best advice I can give you is to learn from it, and move on. Next time, ask to confront your accuser or bring the other co worker to the manager to verify what you said. But for this time, know in your heart that you were right, and disregard the reprimand. Care for your patients the best way you know how, as though none of this has happened.

If I'm mistaken, and the reprimand from the manager was something more severe that really affected the patients, please let me know so I can correct my advice.


852 Posts

Specializes in none.

When I work for the state, there was a sentence that use to make supervisors or head Nurses stop and ponder. It was "I will not take to you about this without my union rep/attorney present." and then we turn around and leave. What can they do? They can not shoot you, they can't kill you. If they say anything just go to their supervisor. If they try and fire you, it's lawyer time. Don't be too timid when you say this. Say it as a matter of fact. Now you know that you don't have a lawyer, but they don't. But you have rights. You don't have to stand there and take her BS. You can write the whole meeting up and send it to her supervisor, DON, The CEO anybody in charge. Look her straight in the eye and lie your butt off. I had one of these meetings. I stare the person in the eye so much that she had to go home. Of course, I have a beard, tattoo, and gave this woman a look as if I would kill her in the next minute. But I was angry not scared and this woman knew it. Go into the meeting, that you know you are going to be read the riot act, angry not scared. Never show them your weakness.

CapeCodMermaid, RN

6,089 Posts

Specializes in Gerontology, Med surg, Home Health. Has 30 years experience.

Lie your butt off? Try to intimidate her?!?!Really really BAD advice.

Specializes in Trauma, ER, ICU, CCU, PACU, GI, Cardiology, OR. Has 55 years experience.

unquestionably, document, document, and my last advise never let them see you sweat! i'll share what a wise man said to me once..."you can either follow your fears or be led by your passions" :cool:


5 Posts

Specializes in med/surg and telephone triage.

Must set boundaries right away.My suggestion would be to request a meeting with your direct manager and straight up tell him/her what you need from her, specifically saying, "what I need from you is...."Additionally, I would be direct with the nurse that "turned you in". Request to speak with her in private and again use the exact words, "I need to have you come to me first if you have an issue that you want to talk to me about".The goal is to move on and be transparent. Don't argue about what happened. Just like first aid, stop the bleeding first.I have told my direct supervisor to his face that I needed him to stand up for me and back me up in regards to a confrontation with his manager and I.Don't be a victim, don't be passive aggressive, just be assertive.Maybe at some point you could even communicate with the potential "lead nurse" who does not help out and "tattles".Best of luck. It isn't easy, but it is easier than the other options.


5 Posts

Specializes in med/surg and telephone triage.

Oh yeah, if you are union, get your union rep for any meetings with your manager that involves any defense of your work and yes, document, document, document!