1. Cole, Sharon BSN, RN, CCDS
  2. Smith, Heather BSN, RN, RNC-NIC
  3. Dungor, Minaz BSN, RNC-MNN

Article Content

Positive feedback for "Give the Gift of Feedback"

I very much enjoyed the article "Give the Gift of Feedback" by Sharon Cox, MSN, BSN (May 2016), and felt compelled to write a response because it has impacted the way I give feedback to others. The giving and receiving of feedback is an important, if somewhat challenging, aspect of leadership, especially when you want to get it right! As a relatively new manager, utilizing this article is a productive step in the right direction for giving feedback to colleagues and staff in a more beneficial manner.


Many leaders still practice the good-bad-good method, which can leave employees scratching their heads attempting to separate the bread from the meat. The eight-step formula provided by the author clearly lays out the way to provide quality constructive feedback. I also appreciate the helpful conversational tips, along with do's and don'ts. After only a few attempts, I feel more connected with my direct reports and have observed subtle but insightful changes in performance and communication.


In researching this topic further, I was intrigued by 360-degree evaluations. Receiving feedback from superiors, colleagues, direct reports, and even clients can provide a well-rounded, objective assessment that focuses on performance improvement. One study reported that the process impacts areas of goal setting and action taking, whereas another found participants made noticeable improvements in interpersonal skills and behavior following 360-degree evaluations. These evaluations need formal, structured questions for best results. By incorporating both of these processes, I'll be much better equipped to not only provide quality feedback, but also aid in developing those I work with and lead.


Thank you again for sharing the eight steps!


-Sharon Cole, BSN, RN, CCDS


Woodway, Tex.


Job shadowing in high school?

As a supervisor and new subscriber to Nursing Management, I enjoyed reading the article "Bringing Clarity to Job Shadowing" by Briyana L. Morrell, MSN, RN, CCRN, and Julie Detty-Gin, BSN, RN (April 2016). It brought to light the troubling reality of the nursing shortage predictions and the use of job shadowing as a potential remedy. As the authors revealed, nurse job shadowing programs are useful tools that can help people assess whether a career in nursing is right for them. According to some studies, there's an increase in nursing education applications after job shadowing. Although job shadowing is mainly used for people over age 18, I wonder if offering job shadowing earlier in high school may help teens discover nursing as a career path, thereby helping the future nursing shortage.


It has been noted that high school summer camps that include nurse job shadowing enhance student understanding of nursing careers and provide information about nursing colleges and financial assistance. Evaluations after those camps with job shadowing have reflected excitement about a nursing career and strengthened student perceptions of nursing, helping solidify nursing as a top career choice.


As nurses in leadership, we're all aware of the small percentage of men in nursing as evidenced by research and the percentage of men as applicants to our job openings in this female-dominated industry. With the perception of nursing being for women only, we're missing out on the attributes that men bring to our profession. Job shadowing experiences can offer an exciting career choice to young men and help with overcoming perceptions that nursing is just for women. If leaders take an active role in job shadowing opportunities on their nursing units, we can help put a dent in the future nursing shortage and give high school students an exciting view of nursing as a career choice.


-Heather Smith, BSN, RN, RNC-NIC


Southlake, Tex.


Liability and the charge nurse

The article "Sharing Supervision and Liability as a Nurse Manager" by Karen Wilkinson, MN, ARNP (April 2016), has made me rethink this topic. I'm a charge nurse for a busy mother/baby unit. Liability is a topic I've visited often in the past year since my unit moved from postpartum to mother/baby. We've hired a lot of new staff with minimal experience in nursing and also have an international nurse who's having a tough time assimilating. On an average day, I, myself, have a patient load of three couplets or six patients, as well as my responsibilities as a charge nurse. I've repeatedly asked the question: What's my liability as a charge nurse? The answer I've received from my manager and director is: "If you make the right assignments and you believe that the nurses are competent to take that assignment, then it's their responsibility and not yours." After reading this article, I've realized that my responsibilities don't end there.


According to the author, managers are liable when there's failure to perform supervisory duties, properly delegate, or properly train/mentor their staff. Even though I'm not a nurse manager, I'm responsible for my patients, nurses, and the unit as a whole. As a leader, I need to understand my liability and responsibilities. My suggestion is that future leaders must be educated on their liability and responsibilities before accepting the position. The hospital's education department must be able to educate leaders with a short presentation/class, which should be mandatory for all leaders as part of their annual certification.


One article discussed the nurse manager's liability when delegating to unlicensed assistive personnel and even agency nurses. The amount of training and mentoring nurses receive from the hospital varies depending on their background and experience. An agency nurse usually only gets about 1 week, or 3 days, of orientation. This is definitely not enough for them to learn the organization's policies and procedures. On my unit, we utilize agency nurses due to nursing shortages and, again, this exemplifies my concern about liability. In the evolving healthcare industry, nurse managers have increased liability; however, do charge nurses as well?


-Minaz Dungor, BSN, RNC-MNN


Spring, Tex.