There is a saying in the nursing profession that nurses "eat their young" – how veteran nurses are said to treat their younger colleagues – sometimes called lateral violence or horizontal bullying – and this behavior is in direct opposition to the foundation of nursing.
Nursing is based on collaborative relationships between nurses and other healthcare professionals. The way nurses maintain relationships and resolve conflicts are two of the most important skills in nursing today.
"While we like to think that nurse bullying isn't happening – it is a major issue, both in nurse satisfaction, and patient safety. Advanced education and good leadership skills help prevent this behavior in hospitals and healthcare organizations," says Elaine Foster, Ph.D., MSN, RN, Associate Dean of American Sentinel's graduate nursing programs. "Nurse leadership training emphasizes the importance of collaboration and the crucial role that each member of a team plays in making a difference in the lives of patients."
The 'Conflict in the Workplace: Bullying' blog series will run through October 13 and covers such topics as:
- Understanding the source of bullying
- Strategies for managing intergenerational conflict
- Strategies for managing interdisciplinary conflict
- How nurse leaders can effectively manage difficult situations and the role that education plays in conflict resolution
As healthcare organizations continue to move toward team-managed environments, nurses no longer serve on nursing units in subordinate roles. Nurses are finding themselves in new roles as part of a multidisciplinary team improving the overall delivery of care.
"Working to promote a positive work environment and a culture of collaboration and safety illustrates the true professionalism and leadership of our nurses. It's our goal as nurses to focus opinions and behaviors toward our mission, putting the patient first at all costs," adds Dr. Foster.
To learn more about nursing conflict resolution skills, visit the 'Conflict in the Workplace: Bullying', blog series available at http://www.americansentinel.edu/blog/2015/09/21/conflict-in-the-workplace-bullying/
What do you think of this topic? What is your experience with conflict in the workplace? Please share your thoughts below, including your tips on conflict resolution skills that have helped achieve positive outcomes.