• Nurse Bullying: How to Avoid Hiring a Bully

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    Have you ever interviewed someone whom you thought was a perfect fit for your unit and then 2 months later, she turned into the wicked witch? Now you have employees in your office, sometimes crying, because of how she treats them.

    What happened?

    In this episode of Coffee & Conversations about nurse bullying, I’ll share a few simple strategies to avoid, hiring a bully.

    Hi. I’m Dr. Renee Thompson, the CEO of The Healthy Workforce Institute. Welcome to Coffee & Conversations about nurse bullying.

    In today’s episode, we’re going to talk about how NOT to hire a bully.

    As a nurse manager many years ago, I interviewed a lot of people. It was during one of our most profound nursing shortages and the temptation was to hire anyone who had an active license and breathed. However, my interviewing skills were not the best. It was so easy to bamboozle me during an interview because I see the good in people and think everyone is soooo nice! I hired people whom I thought were amazing who turned out to be Attila the Hun reincarnated.

    Knowing how important it is to hire the RIGHT person, I finally got smart and adopted a new interviewing strategy to make sure I wasn’t hiring a bully.

    First, utilize behavioral interviewing techniques
    Behavioral interviewing allows you to assess how well someone has performed in the past so that you can determine if they will fit in well within your organization. If you want to avoid hiring a bully, asking behavioral based questions is essential!!!

    Second, ask your staff to interview the candidate as a group
    Some people can totally ace the behavioral questions. They know the right language, may have preplanned and rehearsed “right answers” to the most common behavioral type questions. However, your staff hasn’t been trained in these techniques and may be able to catch them off guard by asking questions they hadn’t anticipated. And, the beauty of asking your staff to interview the potential hire, you’re tapping into the collective power of others who might ultimately be better than you at interviewing. As a bonus, they feel more involved in the process and will make sure this person is a good fit!

    Third, insist that they shadow at least 4 hours with someone on your unit
    When you meet someone, you’re not actually meeting who they really are – you’re meeting their representative. However, if left to spend a few hours or if you can, an entire shift with front line staff, they will unravel, perhaps just a bit. But it’s enough to get a glimpse into their true personality.
    One manager shared that she had a male interviewee spend time with another male nurse. This candidate aced the interview, was well educated and extremely polite (the manager was a woman). After spending a few hours with her nurse, he began to unravel. Twice, he made a comment about “these hot young nurses”, walked out of a patient’s room to find the nursing assistant to put a patient on a bedpan and when asked said, “Well isn’t that their job?” and casually dropped the “F” bomb in the break room.

    Do you think the manager hired him? Not a chance!! But she would have if not for insisting that he shadow.
    By asking your interviewee to shadow with one of your high performing employees, he or she can observe for any sign of rudeness or incivility.

    I’m telling you this strategy works!

    Spend more time up front making sure you bring in the right people and avoid hiring the wrong ones. Remember, once you get them in – it’s hard to get them out!

    Are there any tactics that you use? If so, please post in the comment section below. I’d love for you to share!

    If you like this video, make sure you subscribe and share it with others. And if you really want to go down the rabbit hole of workplace bullying and incivility, go to my website http://bit.ly/2AgxPpJ for more resources.

    As an international speaker and consultant Dr. Renee Thompson tackles the professional challenges facing healthcare leaders today. With 27 years as a clinical nurse, nurse educator, and nurse executive, Dr. Thompson is a thought leader on creating a healthy workforce by eradicating workplace bullying. She hosts an award winning blog and is the author of several popular books on bullying and professional development.
    Renee works with healthcare organizations that want to eradicate bullying and incivility. Got a question or situation you'd like Renee to answer in this series?

    Put it in the comments below or contact Renee on her website Healthy Workforce Institute http://bit.ly/2AgxPpJ Show less
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