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What to say in exit interview

Nurse Beth   (915 Views 6 Comments)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice) Writer Innovator Expert Nurse

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

17 Followers; 99 Articles; 233,082 Profile Views; 1,981 Posts

Dear Nurse Beth,

My job as a night shift ICU nurse is challenging to say the least. Morale is low, high stress, no breaks, difficult shifts, at least three patients many shifts, a lot of floating, and some passive-aggressive coworkers stirring the pot sometimes. I have decided to resign as I find it is negatively affecting me. I feel that if I am honest with my supervisor I will be blackballed and put on the no-rehire list which is a common tactic of the corporation I work for. What would be a good reason to tell my supervisor why I am leaving to protect my reputation and job history? I feel she will push for more details if I just say it's because morale is low which is what others have told her to avoid problems.


Dear Decided to Resign,

Just as it's smart of you to leave this environment for your own well being, try not to stress or use any more energy around leaving.

There is a scripture that says "Don't throw your pearls to swine" meaning your insights will likely be wasted. You have identified low morale, high workload, floating and dysfunctional behavior- but they already know this, and so far, are not doing enough about it.

While it's not likely you'd be marked as a "do not re-hire" unless they are extremely petty, there is some risk and little, if any, benefit to being honest. Very rarely do employers actually use exit interviews to make improvements.

You could instead say you've chosen to broaden your working experience, or that you are leaving to spend more time with family. By making it about you, and not about the organization, your manager is less likely to push for details.

Line up another job before you quit, and give the required notice. By doing so, you remain the professional that you are, and leave with dignity.

Good luck to you! I hope you are valued in your next job and you land in a better spot.

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth
Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

 

 

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50 Posts; 1,455 Profile Views

It does not matter and may not make a difference but I don’t agree with the advice. Unfortunately, that is one of the reasons we are mostly crushed, disrespected and our profession despite of thousands of schools, degrees and desires to stand up cannot do it. We eat each other and allow it on a daily basis. Having the opportunity to go somewhere else is fantastic and amazing but you will be “jumping” places to places because mostly everywhere you may find that. There are other ways of succeeding in the work place. I hope you will find yours because there is no magic recipe.

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Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

17 Followers; 99 Articles; 1,981 Posts; 233,082 Profile Views

19 hours ago, cubrnjvm said:

It does not matter and may not make a difference but I don’t agree with the advice. Unfortunately, that is one of the reasons we are mostly crushed, disrespected and our profession despite of thousands of schools, degrees and desires to stand up cannot do it. We eat each other and allow it on a daily basis. Having the opportunity to go somewhere else is fantastic and amazing but you will be “jumping” places to places because mostly everywhere you may find that. There are other ways of succeeding in the work place. I hope you will find yours because there is no magic recipe.

Thanks for your feedback. I'm not sure what part of the advice you disagree with, but I'm thinking it's to not be forthcoming when asked "Tell me why you are leaving". I also hear you saying it'd be better for the profession if we did speak up.

You make a good point, and sadly, I'd agree if it wouldn't hurt the OP's career.

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On 11/7/2019 at 8:15 AM, Nurse Beth said:

... I feel that if I am honest with my supervisor I will be blackballed and put on the no-rehire list which is a common tactic of the corporation I work for. What would be a good reason to tell my supervisor why I am leaving to protect my reputation and job history? I feel she will push for more details if I just say it's because morale is low which is what others have told her to avoid problems.

[...]

Why do you feel the need to explain anything to her?  You are under no obligation to provide her any information beyond the effective date of your resignation.  In 20 years of nursing, all I have ever submitted is: "I am tendering my resignation, effective date.  Thank you for the opportunities that you've provided me."  Aside from this, I have never been asked by my manager for any further information.

Best wishes.

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myoglobin has 11 years experience as a ASN, BSN, MSN and specializes in ICU, trauma, neuro.

613 Posts; 4,300 Profile Views

Here is what I will say if I find the courage.  Working at HCA over the past ten years I have been blessed to work with some of the finest human beings on the face of this planet.  Were I to live a thousand years I could never  repay them for the kindness, generosity, and wisdom that they have bestowed upon me and this includes some (like my manager) with whom I have often expressed disagreement.  At the same time I have never personally witnessed an organization so willing to put profit, and expediency above the welfare of their nurses, employees and most of all patients. Especially, since doing so (I believe) ultimately costs them money in terms of lost customer loyalty and employee turnover. It would take days for me to list even a fraction of the instances where this was the case from patients downgraded from ICU who were in acute septic shock, to patients transferred from the ER to the floor without report (during shift change) to charge nurses (in some cases, but not all) willing to sacrifice their nursing soul in order to please management enough to avoid having to do patient care.  I tell you the truth if I won a billion dollar lottery I would use 90% of the funds to destroy this abomination built on profit down to the last brick and replace it with something better.  Also, although I am not a socialist (far from it). If we move to socialized medicine it will be in significant part due to business models built upon short term expediency and greed rather than care of their fellow human beings.  

I could go on for hours, but by this time they will probably be calling security.  

Edited by myoglobin

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Just say you are ready for a change.  Simple and truthful.

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