You are what you wear?
I like wearing scrubs. Even though I am not out on the unit doing patient care, I wear my scrubs every day. I feel like it makes me a part of the team and it shows my staff that I can come out and help if needed.
About three months after I started in the manager position I had to fire one of the nurses on the unit. That day, I had meetings all day and for some reason decided to dress business casual to work. So, the first day I don’t wear scrubs, I fire somebody.
Now my staff thinks every time that I wear street clothes that I have something serious to take care of on the unit. Even though that isn’t true, I have tried to use that to my advantage. When ever I do dress for work, I make sure that I have somebody to pull into the office to counsel or even to just close the door and have a little chat.
The best part…..it works. I can see who the staff looks at me when I come around the corner wearing a button-up shirt. They don’t make eye contact, and don’t want to talk to me. A few will ask me who is getting fired today and laugh, but for the most part they just scamper away.
I am not a manager that likes to intimidate my staff. But, it does feel good from time to time to do something to get their attention like that. Eventually it won’t work anymore, but I will take advantage of it while I can.
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Rob Cameron is currently a staff nurse in a level II trauma center. He has primarily been an ED nurse for most of his career, but he has also been a nurse manager for Surgical Trauma and Telemetry unit. He has worked in Med/Surg, Critical Care, Hospice, Rehab, an extremely busy cardiology clinic and pretty much anywhere he's been needed.
Prior to his career in nursing, Rob worked in healthcare finance and management. Rob feels this experience has given him a perspective on nursing that many never see. He loves nursing because of all the options he has within the field. He is currently a grad student working on an MSN in nursing leadership, and teaches clinicals at a local university.
Away from work, Rob spends all of his time with his wife and daughter. He enjoys cycling and Crossfit. He is a die hard NASCAR fan. Sundays you can find Rob watching the race with his daughter.
By Rob Cameron