Bullying in the Workplace Old Nurse to New Nurse
A considerable amount of scholarly work has been done on bullying in learning institutions and places of work. Bullying at work place takes place when a worker experiences unrelenting forms of maltreatment from his or her colleagues. Bullying can cause physical and psychological pain to the victims. Workplace bullying encompasses, but is not limited to physical, verbal, and emotional abuse (Huston, 2013). This unvoiced scourge in nursing is characteristically encouraged by the need of bullies to have a total control of a person (, 2009). This literature review discusses bullying of new nurses by their senior colleagues as a significant challenge in the nursing career and proposes some strategies for dealing with bullying.
Literature Review on Bullying
Causes of Bullying
Although the word nursing denotes caring and compassion, nurses are not immune to harassment from doctors, workmates and physicians. There is a classic saying that nurses devour their young, and various survey results have confirmed this statement.
According to a research conducted by Farrell, nursing is one of the most demanding careers because a nurse has to endure many challenges such as dealing with emotional problems, and working in precarious environment (Farrell, 2009, pp. 534-536).
A study by Steven points out that bullying is a multifaceted occurrence that is facilitated by many factors at the workplace (Steven, 2009, pp. 189-190). Junior nurses are particularly vulnerable to various forms of harassment. Nurses promoted to other divisions are also common targets for tormentors because they are envied by others. Although many factors may make a nurse harass others, most bullies are encouraged by a sense of dominance, anger and jealousy.
According to Smith, some of the factors that can create include poor working environment, insufficient recruitment, and unproductive administrative approaches to problem solving (Smith & Singer, 2010, p. 175).
Incidences of harassment are hardly reported by junior nurses since they admit that unfriendly work environment is widespread in all places of work. In an investigation by Anderson, approximately 50% of the participants observed workplace harassment and did nothing to impede it; thus, allowing the aggressive worker to further bully others unchecked (Farrell, 2009, pp. 538-539).
Another study that was carried out by Rosenstein revealed that approximately 70% of bullied nurses also observed or were victims of a form of child mistreatment or intimate spouse violent behavior. Moreover, survivors of abuse reported more workplace violence than non survivors of abuse, especially at an earlier stage in their nursing career (Rosenstein, 2011, pp. 26-28).
Huston contends that bullying has serious ramifications at individual and organization levels. To an individual, physical harassment may result in serious wounds. Junior nurses subjected to verbal abuse and emotional harassment may experience serious psychological suffering, which can lead to depression (Huston, 2013).
According to McKenna, depressed nurses often develop medical complications such as anxiety, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases (McKenna & Smith, 2013, pp. 90-92). Nurses who are physically and emotionally bullied become less productive at work and this can hinder the achievement of organizational goals. Moreover, can compel nurses to quit their jobs. Resignation of nurses due to bullying can lead to shortage of nurses in hospitals (McKenna & Smith, 2013, pp. 93-95).
Recommendations for Bullying
Based on my experiences in nursing, I would like to recommend the following measures to deal with bullies. Although bullying of nurses is a complicated problem, it can be solved through multifaceted approaches. Newly recruited nurses should develop skills to help them deal with bullies. Nurses should help each other overcome bullying by assisting victims of harassment.
The best way to deal with a bullying incident is to seek help from friends, siblings, and trustworthy workmates. This research also revealed that the least effective approach was remaining silent about a bullying incident. Further, it showed that assistance from friendly workmates mitigated effects of bullying. However, friends may fail to to the victim of bullying.