Rolling Out The Red Carpet For Your Float Nurses

Today I’d like to tell you why and how you should be rolling out the red carpet for your float nurses. Four years ago I went back to the bedside. It had been 8 years since I independently cared for patients, so I was a nervous wreck! The environment had changed so much that even though I had been a nurse for 20+ years, I was not confident in my ability to get back on the horse. My third day off of orientation (keep in mind I only worked twice a month), I noticed that my name wasn’t on...

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5 Life Lessons Every Nurse Can Learn From John Wooden

John Wooden was arguably the most successful, probably the most influential, and certainly the most studied coach in the history of US sports. His UCLA basketball teams won 11 national championships over a 13 year span. But, his influence is more than a matter of wins and losses. He spoke very little about “winning”. Winning – the final numbers of the scoreboard – was the result of a process, of doing things the right way. And it was the way he coached that made a difference and led to his phenomenal results. Winning is the result of a process,...

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Mother Bear Is Here! The Art of Protecting New Nurses

The bond between a mother bear and her cub is very strong. Mother bears are the quintessential role models for loving and protecting offspring. When a mother bear detects a threat to her cubs, what does she do? She gets “bat sh** crazy” on them! A mother bear will sacrifice her life to save her cubs. When a cub cries, this indicates the cub is cold, wet, or needs food so the mother bear feeds, warms, or moves the cub to dry land. When the cub yells, this indicates the cub is separated from her, so the mother bear grunts...

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We’re All In This Together: Superstar Team Building Tips

Team building is crucial in any business, but I believe it’s especially important in nursing! Why is that? When nurses function as a team, it’s easier to complete all of the gazillion tasks required to care for today’s complex patients. Working together to admit and discharge patients, manage patient’s pain and elevated blood sugars; and prevent falls, infections, and unhappy patients is what’s best for the entire staff and most importantly, what’s best for our patients. It’s also no secret that medical care is becoming more advanced with each passing second, often requiring us to take a multidisciplinary approach...

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Bridging the Gap Between Millennial Nurses and Boomers

Millennials and boomers; they’re different, right? Right. However, different isn’t always a bad thing! Especially in nursing where we can use our differences to better treat our patients. Let me explain. Almost every time I get together with a group of nurses on a unit to talk about incivility, the topic of generational differences comes up. The boomers complain about the entitled attitudes of the newer, younger nurses and the millennials complain about the “crusty”, cranky older nurses. Typically, this is what I hear: From the boomers: The young nurses don’t respect them. They think they’re entitled, think they know...

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3 Traits of Leaders That Create a Culture of Speaking Up

What is your greatest wish as an employee? As you ponder that question it’s likely that everything from being respected and treated fairly to being paid well and being valued has crossed your mind, which are all excellent things to strive for in a workplace! So, what do all of these things have in common? Most of them can be traced back to “being heard” in one way or another. As employees, and people in general, we want to know that our voice matters; that we matter. I recently had the pleasure of reading an enlightening article in The Harvard...

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Bullying & Burnout: The Leadership Challenges of the 21st Century

Bullying and burnout is a huge problem among leadership in the 21st century and it’s time we started talking about it! Gretchen was excited when she accepted a leadership position at a prominent hospital in her hometown. She had worked at a local community hospital for the last 6 years and advanced as far as she could go. Now she had an opportunity to work at a large teaching hospital as the manager on a busy telemetry unit. Within 2 months, Gretchen was questioning whether or not she made the right decision. Although she was looking forward to spending...

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5 Qualities Nurse Heroes Possess

Every year during May, nurses around the globe celebrate the wonderful world of nursing. It’s a time for us to reflect on the progress we’ve made over the years and also a time to recognize the amazing nurses who seem to rise above the rest. I call them heroes because they CHOOSE to make decisions based on what’s best for their patients – not themselves. A nurse who hears gunshots coming from the triage room in the ED and while everyone runs out, she runs in. A nurse who after his shift ends goes back into his dying patient’s...

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10 Tips To Create a Successful Nursing Career

Every year in May we celebrate nurses during Nurses Week.  This celebration lasts a week or so and typically ends on Florence Nightingale’s birthday, May 12th. During this time, we recognize the sacrifice nurses make to keep patient’s safe, honor extraordinary acts of heroism, and reflect on what it actually means to be a nurse. We celebrate our current nurses while attempting to inspire a generation of future nurses to be successful. Here is my definition of success: To become the nurse whom we want to work with at 2 o’clock in the morning in a crisis (when you...

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5 Ways To Build Moral Resilience

Moral resilience is so important in nursing. I’d like to say I’ve always made decisions based on what was best for patients or morally right, but I’m not sure I have. Likewise, I’d like to think I’ve always treated  my co-workers with the utmost respect – but have I? Truth be told, when I think back on my career, I’ve made decisions and treated others that in retrospect, were not exactly admirable. Every now and then I think about the times my moral compass went south. I feel the familiar pangs of regret and guilt but stop and remind...

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Renee Thompson
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