Posts Tagged ‘nursing supervisor’

How to Communicate Your Way to a Better Work Environment

Sunday, February 7th, 2010

There comes a time in every healthcare professional’s career when things come to a stalemate – maybe a whiny colleague has pushed you past your boiling point, you have a difficult patient, or morale in your department has reached a new low. Something needs to change now. Your success in resolving the problem will largely depend on how skillfully you bring up difficult issues with your supervisor and how well you guide that conversation in a productive direction.

Nursing is a stressful occupation, whether you are a newly-minted STNA or a veteran travel nurse. Often, nurses find they have too much work, too little control over that work and not enough help from each other. Some things you can try include:

  • Brainstorming with peers to find solutions, creating a better working environment and then bringing issues to your supervisor as a group.
  • Designate a peer mediator within your unit or department. A mediator can control the process and ensure everyone involved behaves respectfully toward each other. Peer mediation is voluntary and confidential, which makes the approach successful.

Many times, organizational structure can be the problem. Being supportive of your colleagues is another way to ensure that everyone feels appreciated and “heard.”

  • Be a role model for others.
  • Support effort as well as success.
  • Give encouragement when someone tackles a difficult assignment.
  • Increase your own self-respect.
  • Foster a win-win attitude in your department.
  • Ask your supervisor if you can devote a portion of each staff meeting to talking about what is and is not working in your unit and what isn’t. Give people a chance to express their concerns and brainstorm solutions as a group.
  • Learn to negotiate.