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And the survey says… Staff retention (try to break these 20 habits)

This week I have the pleasure of reading the incredible responses we received to our Nurses Week 2015 survey. So many of you shared your insights, challenges, and hopes for the coming year—thank you! We’ll be emailing the winners of copies of Kathleen Bartholomew’s Team-Building Handbook: Improving Nurse-to-Nurse Relationships in the next couple of days. Keep your eyes peeled for our email.

Your generous responses help us understand your needs and aspirations, and we will try to return the favor by covering those important topics in this blog and in our upcoming books, webinars, and e-learning. For starters, I’ve revived a popular post from the past that deals with retention, identified by many of you as a top priority. Let me know if you recognize any of the 20 bad habits in yourself!

Retain staff by breaking these 20 bad habits

Peter Druker, often called the Father of Modern Management, made the following observation, “We spend a lot of time teaching managers what to do. We don’t spend enough time teaching them what to stop. Half the leaders I’ve met don’t need to learn what to do–they need to learn what to stop.” We simply need to [more]

Save yourself: Tips for protecting your valuable time

First, a couple of brief items:

Better Meetings, Better Outcomes: You can download the PDF I promised a few days ago, “What am I doing here? Tips for being accountable in meetings,” here.

Nursing Survey Ends 5/27: Our 2015 nursing survey is still open if you want to share your thoughts and (not incidentally) participate in our drawing for Team-Building Handbook: Improving Nurse-to-Nurse Relationships. Here’s the link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/hcpronurses2015

Next, my confession.

I’ll admit it, I peeked—I couldn’t resist the temptation to look at the results of our ongoing 2015 nursing survey to find out the biggest issues facing nurses today.

Would you be surprised if I mentioned that time (not enough of it) is as common a concern today as it was in the 2013 survey? To relieve some of your pain, I’ll share some great tips from Sharon Cox, [more]

Happy Nurses Week: A thank you to our favorite nurses

Is there any doubt that nurses heal the spirit, as well as HappyNursesWeekthe body?

The stories in The Boston Globe annual “Patients Salute Their Nurses” piece offer an inspiring and humbling testament to all the nursing profession can be.

In 400 thank-you letters from grateful patients, family members, and colleagues, Boston’s nurses received personal acknowledgment and messages of love inspired by their deep commitment to the profession and their patients.

Here are snippets from some of my favorite letters:

Diane goes above and beyond, treating me with dignity and respect, even calling me weekly to check on my weight and well-being. Like a friendly drill sergeant, she reminds me to keep my weight down and to pay attention to what I eat.

Joe provided intense, meticulous, and sensitive care not only to Mike, but also to his extended family. Joe’s quiet and steady presence gave us hope and strength when we needed it most. Mike did not make it through the night, but the blow of his passing was softened by the gift of time that Joe made possible.
[more]

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Nurses: Say This, Not That

Power can be taken, but not given. The process of the taking is empowerment in itself.
—Gloria Steinem

In a recent post, I promised a free tool adapted from The Image of Nursing.
If you’d like to download SAY THIS, NOT THAT: An Empowerment Glossary for
Nurses,
you’ll find it here. And while you’re waiting for the download, try this: 

If you hear yourself saying:

No one notices my contributions  

Say this instead:

I’d like to share with you how I’ve handled this situation

 

The Image of Nursing: Speak Up!

In a comment on one of my posts last week, Stefani suggested (strongly) that to improve the image of nursing, we need to speak up. I’m reposting her comment below to draw your attention to it.

I’d like to hear your thoughts about why nurses might not speak up when, by staying silent (out of fear?), their personal self-esteem takes a hit and—more importantly—care standards aren’t maintained. Have you developed techniques that help you overcome fear of confrontation so that you can truly speak up?

Speak Up image

Here are a few resources related to speaking up:

  1.  A terrific article from Susan Gaddis, PhD: Positive, Assertive “Pushback” for Nurses
  2.  A table you will be able to download from our reading room in a few days: Say This, Not That: An Empowerment Glossary for Nurses. Look for it on or before 3/19/15.
  3.  Books written by Kathleen Bartholomew, RN, MN, including Speak Your Truth and Team-Building Handbook: Improving Nurse-Physician Communications.

Improving the image of nursing

Every nurse can play a part in elevating the public perception of the nursing profession. The table below shows you how email, evidence-based research, reasonable work schedules, a diverse workforce, preceptorships, interprofessional communication skills, and name tags can promote the professional image of nursing. This table was adapted from the HCPro book, The Image of Nursing, by Shelley Cohen, RN, MS, CEN and Kathleen Bartholomew, RN, MN.

 imageof nursing table 2

Dealing with tardy nurses

Some people appear effortlessly organized and always manage to be on time. Others are perpetually frazzled and think five minutes late equates to being early. Parents of small children usually fall into the latter category!

How do you deal with nurses who are frequently late? Comment below and let us know.

Ben Franklin’s advice to nurse preceptors

Tell me and I forget.
Teach me and I remember.
Involve me and I learn.

How do you provide preceptees with constructive advice Ben Franklin2
or feedback? Do you tell them what they did wrong and spell out how to correct it? Or do you encourage them to use critical-thinking skills to truly ingrain a personal understanding of ways to improve their practice?

Look at these two approaches to feedback, and see which you think would be more effective. (More examples excerpted from The Preceptor Program Builder can be found in the Reading Room.)

The preceptor observes the preceptee greeting the manager correctly, giving her name, and stating that she is a preceptee. However, she was not wearing her name tag.

Evaluative feedback
Your name tag is missing, and the manager
won’t like it!

Descriptive feedback
You greeted the manager according to the facility protocol.
Can you think of anything that would help your manager remember you?

The descriptive feedback encourages the preceptee to use critical thinking, which illustrates Ben Franklin’s timeless recommendation to “involve me, and I learn.”

If you would like to share “aha” moments and techniques for constructive feedback, please feel free to comment below…

Nurses Week giveaway: Free excerpt from Ending Nurse-To-Nurse Hostility and a chance to win a copy!

HCPro has celebrated nurses all week long with special giveaways, prizes, and promotions.

We are giving away an exclusive excerpt from the brand-new edition of Ending Nurse-to-Nurse Hostility!

In this excerpt, Kathleen Bartholomew, RN, MN, is shining a light on horizontal hostility in nursing school. Read about the effect of horizontal hostility and bullying in nursing school and the positive ways nursing students can be supported and mentored as they begin their nursing career.

Download the excerpt here.

Plus you can also enter to win a free copy of the book!

We are giving away five copies of Ending Nurse-to-Nurse Hostility. Be among the first to read the newly updated book from nursing communication expert Kathleen Bartholomew, RN, MN.

Almost 50% of former nurses cite horizontal hostility as their reason for leaving the profession. Beat the statistics! Read this groundbreaking book and discover all-new strategies and solutions to improve the nursing culture at your organization.

Enter here for your chance to win.