This week we didn’t have a discussion, just a modern healthcare post and working on our final exam. I reflected this week on the class as a whole. It was very interesting to take on the “role” of nurse manager or other leadership positions to put ourselves in situations we may be in if we carried that role. It was fun to see how different people deal with different situations and to learn from the perspective of others. The discussions in this class were probably my favorite part.
This week we talked a bit about risk management. We read the case study about the man who was under the influence and tried to burn his way out of restraints resulting in major burns all over his body. The nurse assigned to him missed a 15 minute round which likely didn’t have much to do with this happening, but it also doesn’t look good on the nurse or hospitals part. What I would have done in this situation is first and foremost to assign a 1:1 caregiver to this patient. They were not in a state to be left alone.
I loved the topic this week about motivation. I think that morale on the unit is something that is very important and that managers need to do all in their power to keep employees feeling valued and happy at their place of work. Coming up with 7 ways to boost unit morale was fun. It was also interesting to see everyone else’s ideas to keep employees happy, motivated, and feeling valued. It was interesting that the one thing we all had in common was rewarding employees with food! Whether it was potlucks, pizza parties, BBQ’s etc., we all felt like bringing food in is a morale booster. We agreed that we should also look into management and see if there is a problem or reason there for all of the employees leaving or wanting to leave.
This week we talked a lot about conflict. I always like to discuss conflict and hear about the different ways that people like to deal with it. I always think it’s best to go straight to the source and try to have a good discussion and work things out without going over someone’s head. Most people on my team who participated in the discussion felt the same way.
I loved watching the guardian too, the conflict between Jake and Ben was interesting to watch, to see how Ben dealt with Jake and his cockiness. When we have to do movie reviews it’s nice to be able to watch movies that are not only good examples of the subject matter, but also entertaining.
This week in the discussion we talked about how each of us have different opinions on what MSN programs would be beneficial for a university to have. It was interesting how we were pretty much split three different ways. The majority thought it would be beneficial for nurse practitioner programs, or nursing administration programs. We did a strategic planning activity as well. The strategic planning activity was also kind of confusing but fun to get everyone’s different input. I havent always liked working as a team but it has been fun in this class to get the different input from different people, I appreciate alternative points of view and thinking outside the box.
Budgeting has always been one of those things that is really interesting to me. Different people have so many different views on the ways that money should be used and why. As a team, we came up with several questions to conduct a budgeting interview. I decided to interview Derek Edwards who is the owner at Big O tires in Sandy, UT and has to manage the budget there.
During the interview with Derek, he expressed that he thinks it’s important to really listen to your employees all the way down the line on where the budget should be spent. He says that a lot of times the employees who are on “the front line” often have good ideas of where improvements need to be made and money needs to be spent. Of course there are a lot of things that he has to make decisions on with things higher up the line. As a newer business owner, luckily there are a lot of Big O franchises and he expressed that it’s good to be able to talk with other owners to see how their money is being spent and give him ideas on what things he should be spending on, and what things he should be saving on.
He admitted that when it comes to budget cutting, it’s really difficult for him to cut anywhere that could affect his employees. He considers himself to be pretty soft hearted and has a hard time making cuts that could affect employees even when it’s necessary.
This week in the readings we read the article “Who moved my cheese” and also did a group discussion on it. I loved reading through how the four different characters dealt with change. In the discussion, it was interesting to see who people most related with. I was sure that like me, everyone would relate most with Haw, but one of the group members related most with Sniff which was surprising to me. In the assignment on dealing with change it was fun because it’s something that the organization that I work for has already faced and I can relate to that situation having already been through that experience. What had most of an impact on me when going through the readings this week was that when we are faced with change it’s best to just embrace it with a good attitude because the changed is likely going to happen either way.
This weeks focus was on career development and staffing. Reading through discussion posts and responding is always my favorite part of the assignments because it’s really fun to see all of the different points of views, and everyone’s different experiences.
Seeing all of the ambition in people when reading through their career goals was really inspiring, but not surprising. Most people want to be professors, nurse practitioners, CRNA’s or things of that sort. There are a lot of people hoping for ICU experience in the next few years.
What surprised me quite a bit was the staffing question. There were SO many different staffing modules used. Some of which made a lot of sense, and others which seemed completely unfair, inefficient, or just downright stupid. It’s interesting that what works for one unit doesn’t work for another, units are very individualized in their needs. I think that no matter the unit that patient acuities should always be taken into account which wasn’t the case. If I ever end up in a position to be staffing a unit, I will always take acuities into account and try to make things as “fair” as possible.
I loved the lecture we listened to this week about the direction in which healthcare is going. These were some of the goals I liked for the future of nursing. To promote a system that:
-Makes quality, compassionate and patient centered care accessible to diverse populations
-Intentionally promote wellness
-primary care and prevention are central drivers
-Interprofessional collaboration and coordination are the norm, not the exception.
-Payment rewards value, not volume.
I feel like the system is already moving this way. The company that I work for has done several things to support these goals. I work on a unit that is very interdisciplinary, we have a lot of teams that work together for the wellness of the patient. We have a lot of trainings that focus on giving culturally competent care. The company I work for started a “live well” campaign a few years ago to promote wellness throughout the workplace and also surrounding communities. I think one of the major barriers is that along with all of these things, we have also been pushed to take bigger patient loads which also makes it a bit more difficult to provide the quality care and time that patients deserve.
This week I did the Performance Appraisal Interview. I interviewed Val Jo Anderson who was the department chair of the integrated biology department at BYU. He also happens to be my dad. Both my mom and dad have been in hiring/firing positions and have done a lot of HR type work in their jobs over the years. It was interesting to see both of their takes on some of the questions that were asked. The majority of the questions they had similar viewpoints on, but my dad tended to be more lenient and understanding where my mom is definitely more black and white.
Some of the questions about working with employees that have scored unsatisfactory for multiple evaluations was interesting. He mentioned a lot about teamwork and working as a team to improve as a whole. He also mentioned that the team is only as strong as it’s weakest link so you have to really take a long hard look at the weakest link to figure out if you can help to strengthen them, or if you need to get rid of them. He says he always gives his employees the benefit of the doubt and helps them to set achievable goals until they have been unsatisfactory several times. He also said that it’s very important as a “boss” or manager to follow up after evaluations with those who have scored poorly and set new goals. The employee in question needs to have a good idea of where they stand and if they are making those expected changes or if they need to be trying even harder. Sometimes the problem is just that the employee may not exactly know what is expected of them so it’s really important to make sure those benchmarks are known.
He stated that it is obviously much easier to do interviews with those employees who are doing good work and don’t have a lot to question. With those employees, he typically praises them and asks what they feel are the things that are going well, or are going poorly in the department. He likes their input both positive and negative and draws ideas for improving the department through them.