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  1. Rainer, Jennifer Boice PhD, MBA, RN
  2. Schneider, Joanne Kraenzle PhD, RN


BACKGROUND: Speaking up is using one's voice to alert those in authority of concerns. Failure to speak up leads to moral distress; speaking up leads to moral courage.


OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to explore the influences of organizational culture, personal culture, and workforce generation on speaking-up behaviors among RNs.


METHODS: We distributed a cross-sectional electronic survey to several thousand RNs, resulting in 303 usable surveys.


RESULTS: Organizational culture was a strong predictor of speaking-up behaviors; speaking up partially mediated the relationship between organizational culture and moral distress but was not a mediator between organizational culture and moral courage. Workforce generation did not explain speaking up.


CONCLUSIONS: The role of organizational culture supports efforts toward healthy work environments. Because not speaking up is related to moral distress, efforts must be escalated to empower nurses to use their voices.