I know what you are doing

Having been a nurse manager, and now being on the other side, back in the trenches in direct patient care, I am seeing things that I really find funny now.

I truly believe in shared governance, letting the frontline staff be a part of decision making, coming up with the solutions and the plans for how things will be done. But I also recognize that ultimately, the final decision is the on the manager’s shoulders. They are the ones that have to answer if things go wrong, and are the ones who get the credit when things go well.

Now I see what I did as a manager. How I was able to lead a discussion, with my agenda already set in my mind. Getting the staff to take my ideas, and make them feel like they were their ideas and fully support those ideas. I know it’s a dirty trick, but like I said…..I was the one who had to answer for what happened on my unit, so why not use my ideas.

I sit in meetings now and just chuckle. I see how other leaders do the same thing. They say that they want to hear all ideas, “nothing is off the table”, and our decisions will be put in place. I see how they manipulate the flow of the conversation to something they have already decided is the best way for the department to operate.

I don’t think they are wrong for what they are doing, heck, I did it too. It helps to get the buy in from the staff.

So, now you too can say “I know what you are doing!”

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Rob Cameron

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.

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