The case of Judie reveals a pressing issue that many nurses may experience in their workplace. The situation when one’s personal and professional values do not align with the strategy of the organization can result in various conflicts and have an adverse effect on the quality of care and employee’s job satisfaction. Judie’s frustration with her job has specific reasons that should be outlined for her to make that right decision. This paper aims to distinguish values present in this case, examine possible conflicts in the situation, and identify potential outcomes.
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Values Present in This Case
Judie’s personal beliefs align with the nursing ethical values that are expected from most medical professionals. According to Shahriari, Mohammadi, Abbaszadeh, and Bahrami (2013), nurses can be characterized by such values as “human dignity… commitment, human relationship, sympathy” (p. 1). Most of these views are present in the situation as well. First of all, Judie believes that the most important part of her job consists of attending to her patients. This way of thinking corresponds with the ethical values of human relationships and commitment. The nurse is interested in providing patient-centered care with an emphasis on interpersonal relationships. However, Judie feels that these values are not supported by the hospital’s administration.
The values of the organization should also be outlined. It is possible that the hospital aims to increase its profitability and create a more rigid structure for employees. Staffing cuts can be explained by the former goal, as the administration most likely hopes to save money on nurses’ pay and benefits. Moreover, Risman, Erickson, and Diefendorff (2016) argue that some hospitals may prioritize profit and efficiency as opposed to staff and patient satisfaction. The values of the organization are not the same as Judie’s. The issue of the system created by the hospital also pressures Judie to change the way she treats her patients. According to the case, the nurse has to attend to various needs of the organization, which shows that the hospital is trying to create a more operations-based environment.
The values of Judie are close to my personal ones. The role of the nurse of any qualification level is to attend to the patients and ensure that they are cared for in the best way possible. I highly value commitment to the job and the client as it allows one to create strong interpersonal relationships and make the process of caring smooth and successful. One’s level of job satisfaction is also based on the way their personal values are aligned with the objectives of the organization. In Judie’s case, the hospital does not seem to center its attention on the patients, which does not correspond with my view of nursing care.
The differences between the nurse and the organization’s core values may result in a number of potential conflicts. First of all, Judie may become so dissatisfied with the hospital’s decisions that her performance will deteriorate. It may happen fast as the administration does not seem to implement any positive changes that would at least partially satisfy the nurse. Therefore, the growing frustration of the nurse manager may compromise the efficiency of the whole group of workers for whom she is responsible. Judie’s performance may become the center of the conflict between the nurse and the administration as the latter is already inclined to reduce the staff of the hospital.
The growing frustration of the nurse manager may also result in some interpersonal conflicts that can further complicate the situation. Nurses’ values to care for their patients do not correspond with the possible goals of the organization. Thus, some verbal conflicts may arise which will lead to the performance being worse than before. Again, the clients may suffer as a result, as their needs will not be answered by the hospital or its workers. The rising tensions between Judie and the administration may involve other members of the staff and create a more significant problem.
Furthermore, the difference between the values of Judie and the administration may exacerbate the negativity that the nurse manager brings to her home. Thus, an interpersonal conflict between Judie and her family may arise as well. Personal frictions are not always based on the reasons that are directly connected to the issue. In this case, Judie’s work can make her tense and irritable. Her discontent will continue to affect her family. Judie’s mental health can also be impacted, as Baillie and Black (2014) note that one can experience moral distress if his or her core values are undermined or ignored. Judie’s frustration with her work may affect her health and the well-being of her family.
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Course of Actions
In my opinion, Judie should try to discuss this problem with the administration. It is stated that she is highly regarded by the superiors, which may make her opinion valuable. Moreover, her experience and seniority may also influence the administration’s course of action. While it is possible that the hospital will not change fast, Judie may become more satisfied with her work as she will have more authority over her actions. Kangasniemi, Pakkanen, and Korhonen (2015) argue that the professional ethics of nurses can be considered an integral part of their work. Therefore, Judie has to feel comfortable in her position in order to show a high level of performance. Her being a nurse manager also has some implications for this situation as she is not only responsible for the patients but also for the other employees, whose performance may suffer from the conflict as well. If Judie gains support from her colleagues, her opinion may become a significant reason for the hospital administration to reconsider its current objectives and values.
Personal Opinion and Potential Consequences
If I were in Judie’s position, I would consider taking some action and interacting with the hospital’s officials before considering other options. While the organization may be set on its current goals and objectives, I believe that is it possible to influence their opinion with enough reason and experience. The goal to provide patients with the best care while keeping the level of satisfaction among employees high would guide my decisions and actions. The ethical values of nursing are outlined with the focus on the client for a reason. One’s openness and communicative ability are aimed at satisfying the patient’s needs. These values can also help to communicate the needs of the staff to the administration. This course of action may result in the hospital changing its ways. However, the clinic may also ignore the concerns of the nurse manager and continue enforcing its beliefs.
If Judie does not want to change the administration’s opinion, she can take two more actions – she can either stay or leave. In this case, staying would mean that the nurse would have to continue working for the administration and performing all activities that are assigned to her. This compliance with the proposed rules may lead to multiple adverse outcomes. As was mentioned before, Judie’s mental health may be affected by the fact that she is dissatisfied with her work. Therefore, she may have problems with her well-being. For instance, she may suffer from burnout which will significantly affect her professional and personal lives. This outcome does not present many benefits for the nurses’ mental state. However, this option would allow Judie to support her family financially, and this position offers her some stability.
Finally, Judie can leave her current job and pursue other options. This decision has its positive and negative consequences. On the one hand, Judie may feel better as she will be no longer forced to act against her beliefs. Her mental state, as well as her family relationships, may improve. On the other hand, her financial position will become unstable. While Judie has the experience and is a professional nurse manager, she may need some time to find a suitable job. Moreover, it is impossible to predict whether her new place of work will have the same values as she has currently. These reasons make the outcomes of this decision somewhat unpredictable.
Judie’s case presents an issue of incompatibility of personal beliefs of a worker and corporate values of an organization. The nurse’s idea of patient-centered care is founded on the ethical values of nurses such as commitment and human relationship. Judie can choose from a number of options regarding her work. First, she can try to interact with the administration and make them reconsider their current objectives and values. Second, the nurse manager can try to get used to the administration’s choices and continue working in the same conditions. This option may further exacerbate her frustration and lead to burnout. Finally, Judie can choose to leave her current jobs and pursue other opportunities. This decision is the least financially stable, although it may benefit the nurse’s mental state.
Baillie, L., & Black, S. (2014). Professional values in nursing. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.
Kangasniemi, M., Pakkanen, P., & Korhonen, A. (2015). Professional ethics in nursing: An integrative review. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 71(8), 1744-1757.
Risman, K. L., Erickson, R. J., & Diefendorff, J. M. (2016). The impact of person-organization fit on nurse job satisfaction and patient care quality. Applied Nursing Research, 31, 121-125.
Shahriari, M., Mohammadi, E., Abbaszadeh, A., & Bahrami, M. (2013). Nursing ethical values and definitions: A literature review. Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research, 18(1), 1-8.