1. Warshawsky, Nora E. PhD, RN
  2. Havens, Donna S. PhD, RN, FAAN
  3. Knafl, George PhD


OBJECTIVE: This study tested the effects of interpersonal relationships on nurse managers' work engagement and proactive work behavior.


BACKGROUND: An engaged workforce may help healthcare organizations improve performance. In healthcare, nurse managers are responsible for creating motivating work environments. They also need to be engaged, yet little is known about what influences nurse managers' performance.


METHODS: A self-administered electronic survey was used to collect data from 323 nurse managers working in acute care hospitals. Instruments included the Relational Coordination Scale, Utrecht Work Engagement Scale, and Proactive Work Behavior Scale.


RESULTS: Interpersonal relationships with nurse administrators were most predictive of nurse managers' work engagement. Interpersonal relationships with physicians were most predictive of nurse managers' proactive work behavior.


CONCLUSION: Organizational cultures that foster quality interpersonal relationships will support the job performance of nurse managers.