Nursing

Blog spotlight: Are you a bully?

Nurse Leader Insider, August 1, 2011

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Do you have favorite nurses on your unit? Are there a couple of nurses who make you want to roll your eyes and sigh every time you interact with them?

While it's to be expected you will have high and low performing employees on your unit, as well as personalities that you bond with more easily than others, nurse managers need to be careful how they deal with their feelings about their staff.

Nurse-to-nurse hostility is a well-recognized problem in the profession. Also known as bullying, lateral violence, horizontal hostility, or toxic behavior, the problem contributes to nurse burnout, high turnover, and poor patient safety.

Victims of horizontal hostility often report the behavior was ignored or condoned by managers, and in the worst cases, managers are the perpetrators. To ensure they are cultivating a healthy work environment, nurse managers must examine their own behavior and ask themselves whether they are doing enough to prevent toxic behavior.

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