NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

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NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

NURS 6221 Entire Course Weekly Discussions And Assignments

| Week 1

Human resources are like natural resources; they’re often buried deep. You have to go looking for them, they’re not just lying around on the surface. You have to create the circumstances where they show themselves.

—Sir Ken Robinson

Human resource management is one of the more important and complex responsibilities of nurse managers. When nurse managers effectively support and develop staff members, operational and financial activities run more smoothly. However, managing a diverse workforce within a highly complex health care environment produces significant challenges.

Understanding the principles that underlie human resource management will help you more effectively manage the most important asset in health care: the people who provide or support the provision of patient care.

This week, you explore the roles human resource professionals fulfill in health care settings. Furthermore, you examine how these roles differ from those of the nurse manager.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Differentiate between the role of human resource professionals and nurse managers

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Janet has been working as a nurse manager for a little over six months. Since she took this position, nurses have asked her a variety of questions related to paid leave, health insurance coverage, retirement plans, and other important issues. Each new question causes Janet to wonder whether she is providing her staff with sufficient information. Janet realizes that she needs help answering these questions, and she is curious to see if she can enlist the assistance of someone in the Human Resources department. Despite her experience as a nurse and as a nurse manager, Janet is not sure what kind of support HR can provide, nor how and when she should request their help.

Nurse managers may be uncertain about the roles that HR plays in health care organizations. In addition, many managers are unclear about how HR can support them with the staff function of their managerial responsibilities. As a nurse manager, what questions might you have about HR’s role? Furthermore, how have your previous experiences impacted your perceptions?

To prepare

  • Reflect upon the role HR has played in your current organization or one with which you are familiar. What interactions have you noticed between HR professionals and other staff in this setting? How do these interactions compare to those of nurse managers and staff that you have observed?
  • Complete the media survey, “Survey on HR,” found in this week’s Learning Resources. Though this survey is not graded, take careful note of the questions asked and the correct answers.
  • Review Chapter 1, “The New Human Resource Management Process” in the course text, Human Resource Management: Functions, Applications, & Skill Development, as well as this week’s media, “Introduction to Healthcare Human Resource Management.”
  • Consider how your perceptions of HR are similar to or different from the roles of HR described in the Learning Resources. How does the role of HR differ from that of a nurse manager?

By Day 3

Post a description of your media survey experience, including your survey results and your reactions to the survey. Explain at least two perceptions that you held regarding the role of HR compared to the role of the nurse manager. Describe how these perceptions were similar to or different from the roles outlined in the Learning Resources. Without identifying individuals or organizations, support your response by briefly describing experiences that may have influenced your perceptions.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Ask a probing question, substantiated with additional background information or research.
  • Share an insight from having read a colleague’s posting, synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience and additional resources.

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NURS 6221 Week 2: Legal, Regulatory, and Ethical Issues

Consider the following discrimination and harassment 2011 end-of-year statistics as cited by the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission:

  • Disability-Based Charges: 25,742 cases filed; over 103 million dollars distributed in monetary benefits (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “Americans with Disabilities Act…,” n.d.)
  • Race-Based Charges: 35,395 cases filed; over 83 million dollars distributed in monetary benefits (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “Race-Based Charges…,” n.d.)
  • Sexual Harassment Charges: 11,364 cases filed; over 52 million dollars distributed in monetary benefits (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “Sexual Harrassment Charges…,” n.d.)

As these statistics demonstrate, workplaces across the United States continue to struggle with instituting effective anti-discrimination policies and creating harassment-free workplaces. As a nurse manager, what can you do to ensure equal opportunity and fair treatment for all employees in your health care setting? Preventing discrimination and harassment in the workplace requires knowledge of legal and regulatory issues, as well as careful consideration of how, when, and why these situations may occur. While you are not expected to know the intricacies of the many laws, rules, and regulations that apply to human resource management, as a nurse manager, you must exercise judgment to know when and how to consult with human resource professionals.

This week, you explore employment discrimination and sexual harassment in today’s workplaces. You also examine the laws that protect individuals.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze Title VII legislation that protects classes of individuals from workplace discrimination
  • Evaluate strategies that may be used to mitigate workplace discrimination
  • Analyze the ramifications of sexual harassment in the workplace
  • Formulate action plans for mitigating and ameliorating behaviors that constitute sexual harassment

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Consider your rights as an employee or job applicant. What do you know about the laws that prevent unfair treatment and discriminatory practices in the workplace?

Prior to 1964, employees and job applicants had few rights. Many employers used skin color, religion, or gender as a sole basis to hire or fire employees. Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act aimed to protect employees from the prejudices of employers. In fact, after its passing it became the core foundation of workplace discrimination law because it protected five categories, or “classes,” of citizens from unfair employment practices. As time progressed, legislators supplemented Title VII with more anti-discrimination acts and policies. Today, employees or applicants who feel discriminated against due to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, pregnancy, veteran status, or genetics can seek grounds for legal representation.

As a leader in the nursing field, you must take all necessary precautions to ensure that you and your unit, department, and/or organization adhere to the laws outlined and associated with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.

To prepare

  • Review Chapter 3, “The Legal Environment and Diversity Management,” in the course text, Human Resource Management: Functions, Applications, & Skill Development. Examine how Title VII protects classes of employees across all organizations and professions.
  • Review this week’s media, “Legal Issues,” and the laws that address employment discrimination.
  • Conduct research to learn more about applicable laws and regulations pertaining to the protected class assigned by your Instructor.
  • Select one of the following options:
    • Option 1: Conduct research via the Walden Library and other scholarly sites (such as the ones listed below) to locate an authentic discrimination case involving the protected class that you were assigned.
    • Option 2: Recall an instance of discrimination you have personally experienced or witnessed related to your assigned protected class. Consider the events leading up to and the resolution of this instance.

    Note: The case/instance that you choose for this Discussion may be from an organization in any field (not just health care) and must have occurred within the last 10 years.

  • Once you have selected your option and case/instance, reflect upon the following questions:
    • What legal issues (i.e., Title VII and other applicable laws) were relevant to this case or instance?
    • What strategies would you propose to prevent a similar situation from occurring in your unit, department, or organization?

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

By Day 3

Post a brief summary of the discrimination case/instance you selected and how the events impacted the individual(s) and/or the work environment. Describe the key legal issues involved and explain how Title VII legislation applied. Discuss at least one strategy you would employ in an effort to mitigate this type of discrimination from occurring in your unit, department, or organization. Include the APA reference and a hyperlink to your case example (if applicable).

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Provide an additional strategy that could help your colleague mitigate discrimination issues in his or her health care setting.
  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting, synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience and additional research.

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Assignment: Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Julie has been a nurse at Memorial Hospital for three years. During that time, she has developed productive relationships with her colleagues and has earned a reputation for providing exceptional care to patients. One day she approaches you, her manager, and asks to speak in private. Once you are alone, Julie explains that over the past couple of months she has heard a physician and two nurses repeatedly make disparaging remarks about people who are homosexual. She appears visibly upset as she tells you this. Julie says that the situation has become so uncomfortable that she no longer feels safe in this environment.

Does this scenario reflect a possible case of sexual harassment? How would you respond to Julie, and what steps might you take next?

Sexual harassment is an important topic in today’s organizations–one that is often addressed through HR presentations and trainings. However, even for experienced nurse managers and HR professionals, it can be challenging to recognize some of the behaviors and actions that may indicate sexual harassment. Nurses in leadership and management positions have a critical responsibility to become attuned to the various interactions that can be problematic, including inappropriate remarks and jokes, improper fraternization, quid pro quo situations, and potentially offensive images.

To prepare

  • Review the articles, “Sexual Harassment – A Touchy Subject for Nurses,” “Why Are Nurses Leaving? Findings from an Initial Qualitative Study on Nursing,” and “Bullying, Harassment, and Horizontal Violence in the Nursing Workforce.” Consider sexual harassment situations most commonly experienced by nurses.
  • Think about a work environment with which you are familiar. Have you witnessed or experienced any behaviors that–perhaps with the benefit of hindsight and increasing awareness–may be construed as sexual harassment, even if you did not think of them that way at the time? Do you recall any instances in which you might have intentionally or unintentionally contributed to or participated in an environment that tolerated harassment against one or more individuals? If so, what were your thoughts and feelings at the time? How, perhaps, has your perspective since shifted?
  • Select one of the following options:
    • Option 1: Conduct research via the Walden Library, or other scholarly sites, to select an article that presents an authentic example of workplace sexual harassment.
    • Option 2: Identify an authentic example of suspected or proven sexual harassment from your professional experience.
  • Conduct research related to your selected example to assess the ramifications that may result from instances of sexual harassment.
  • Consider how you could partner with HR to mitigate situations of sexual harassment in your workplace. In addition, think about specific steps you could take to diminish inappropriate behaviors in the workplace.

To complete

By Day 7

Submit a 3- to 5-page paper in which you do the following:

  • Describe an authentic example of suspected or proven sexual harassment.
    • Explain how this specific instance of sexual harassment impacted the workplace.
    • Identify at least two legal ramifications that could have (or did) result from this situation and how they could (or did) negatively impact the workplace.
    • Briefly explain other ramifications (e.g., organizational culture, staff relationships, individual and team performances, patient safety, quality of care) that could have (or did) result because of this specific instance.
    • Describe the actions that were taken to resolve the situation, if applicable.
  • Formulate an action plan that can be used to mitigate and/or ameliorate behaviors that constitute sexual harassment.
    • Based on your example, explain how you would educate staff on the identification and prevention of inappropriate behaviors. Describe at least two specific steps you would take to diminish similar sexual harassment situations.
    • Describe at least two ways you could partner with HR to effectively accomplish your action plan.

NOTE: For the purposes of this assignment, please do not reveal the name of your workplace or the individuals involved.

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NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course essay help

NURS 6221 Week 3: Labor Relations

Unionization in health care has long been a controversial issue. The purpose of unions is to protect the rights of heath care workers; however, some nurse managers believe that the presence of unions automatically creates an adversarial climate that makes it difficult to build a positive workplace. Effective nurse managers can use unionization attempts and labor initiatives to better address the concerns of staff. In addition, nurse managers can partner with union leaders to create a more engaged workforce.

In Week 2, you examined some of the key legal, ethical, and regulatory issues in health care settings. This week, the attention turns to labor relations.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Evaluate the manager’s role in responding to unionization attempts
  • Analyze HR’s role in helping to legally address labor relations and unionization attempts
  • Evaluate strategies for developing a management/labor partnership once a union has been established

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

If there is no struggle, there is no progress.

—Frederick Douglass

Since their initial rise in the post-Civil War era, unions across the United States have called public attention to unfair labor practices, wage disparities, and inadequate benefits. Union leaders and nurse managers are learning to approach the unionization of employees as a partnership. Union leaders have taken strides to negotiate with managers in quick and efficient “good faith” dealings, while nurse managers enter negotiations with open minds and the intent to reach an agreement. To benefit future generations of nursing professionals, nurse managers must understand how to effectively respond to unionization attempts and how to partner with union leaders.

To prepare

  • Review the article “Making a Union/Management Partnership Really Work” in this week’s Learning Resources. Consider how the union and district health board portrayed in this article worked together to create the joint action group. Think about the positive outcomes of this endeavor. How might nurse managers work with health care unions to solicit such a partnership?
  • Examine the article “Unions in the Healthcare Industry,” taking note of the timeline of unionized activities such as the collective bargaining process, the campaign period, and the outcomes of unionization. How do the legal landscape and social environment of a health care setting change once workers engage in unionized activities?
  • Review the media pieces, “The Saga of TrulyGood Hospital” and “The Saga of Beneficent Hospital.”
    • Reflect upon the situations presented in each media case study, and select one for your Discussion posting.
    • Consider why the staff might be seeking union representation. As a nurse manager, consider the steps you might take to address the situation before, during, and after the time period depicted in the case study.

Note: Before you submit your initial post, replace the subject line (“Week 3 Discussion”) with the name of the case study you selected.

By Day 3

Post a description of at least one reason the nursing staff in the case you selected might decide to unionize. Explain three steps you, as a nurse manager, could take to effectively respond to unionization attempts. Then, discuss HR’s role in helping to legally address labor relations and unionization attempts. Justify your response by citing past experiences with unions, union organizing activities, current labor policies, and/or this week’s Learning Resources.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using the following approach:

  • Review the steps described by a colleague for effectively responding to unionization attempts. If a vote determines that the staff will be represented by a labor union, explain strategies your colleague might employ to establish a good working management/labor partnership with the union.

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NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

NURS 6221 Week 4: Recruitment and Selection

Carla is a nurse manager in a nursing home. She recently made the difficult decision to terminate the employment of a relatively new nurse who consistently demonstrated a positive attitude, but seemed to struggle with performing some of the essential patient care responsibilities. Carla is not sure what she could have done differently, but she wants to be sure to hire a highly qualified candidate this time around. What should Carla do to make sure the job requirements are clear and reasonable? How should she work with HR to recruit for this position? What considerations should she take into account during the interview process?

Nurse managers and human resource professionals are jointly responsible for creating a highly productive environment, though each may make distinct contributions toward this aim. This week, you examine opportunities and challenges related to recruitment of desirable and qualified applicants and the selection process.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of recruitment processes
  • Evaluate selection processes
  • Evaluate alignment between job descriptions and actual abilities required of jobs

How many times have you, or has someone you know, perused jobs on Monster.com, LinkedIn or a clinical listserv? When browsing employment opportunities, what factors motivate you to apply for one position over another?

As a nurse manager, it is critical that you consider the answers to questions such as these when designing your recruitment process. Identifying the approaches applicants use to find jobs can help you broaden your pool of applicants. In addition, knowing how to create accurate job descriptions to advertise for open positions can increase the chances of finding an applicant that is qualified and exhibits skills that you and your workplace desire.

In this Discussion, you examine the process in which a health care organization engages when attempting to recruit qualified and desirable job candidates.

To prepare

  • Review Chapters 4 and 5 from the course text, Human Resource Management: Functions, Applications, Skill Development. What best practices can be used to identify, analyze, and describe positions within a health care setting? In addition, what considerations and factors should be taken into account when recruiting job candidates?
  • Reflect upon the recruitment process used in your current organization or one with which you are familiar. Then, select one setting to further investigate.
  • Consider questions such as the ones below to identify the recruitment methods and steps involved in searching for and attracting potential employees.
    • What is expected of the nurse manager in terms of recruitment?
    • What is expected of HR in terms of recruitment?
    • How are job openings posted and/or advertised?
    • What challenges or constraints have been experienced with regard to recruiting desirable and qualified applicants?

By Day 3

Submit a brief description of your selected organization’s recruitment process. Include an explanation of who is responsible for each step, how and where positions are advertised, and any unique methods used to recruit employees. Explain the effectiveness of these recruitment processes by citing authentic examples from the setting you selected and this week’s Learning Resources as appropriate.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Offer and support an alternative perspective on the effectiveness of a colleague’s recruitment process by citing examples from the Learning Resources or from your own research in the Walden Library.
  • Expand on a colleague’s posting by providing a legal perspective for why a recruitment process should be revamped or changed, based on readings and evidence.
  • Share an insight on similar advertising and recruitment methods your setting has used, synthesizing information to provide new perspectives.

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NURS 6221 Week 5: Becoming an Effective Leader and Coach

You get the best effort from others not by lighting a fire beneath them but by building a fire within them.
—Bob Nelson, President of Nelson Motivation, Inc.

My responsibility is leadership, and the minute I get negative, that is going to have an influence on my team.
—Don Shula, Miami Dolphins Football Coach

Coaching is a conversation, a dialogue, whereby the coach and the individual interact in a dynamic exchange to achieve goals, enhance performance and move the individual forward to greater success.
—Zeus and Skiffington, Behavioral Coaching Institute

What themes do you notice among the above quotes? Furthermore, how does each quote speak to effective leadership? Leading and coaching others is a critical management strategy. Whether training new employees or validating employee performance with positive praise, your ability to lead and coach will prove to be one of the more influential aspects of your role as a manager.

This week, you explore two specific management strategies: strengths-based leadership and the six-step coaching process.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Assess personal and professional leadership strengths
  • Apply strengths-based leadership to manage difficult workplace situations
  • Apply strengths-based leadership to capitalize on the strengths of employees
  • Apply the six-step coaching process *
  • Evaluate coaching best practices *

The task of leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it, for the greatness is there already.

—John Buchan

It can be demoralizing when managers focus primarily on the deficiencies of employees, yet it can sometimes be difficult to see beyond the negatives. Strengths-based leadership is a management approach that not only recognizes an individual’s strengths, but also draws upon these strengths to enhance the dynamics of the workplace. Strengths-based leadership can be applied to employees performing at their personal best or to those who may need redirection. In addition, the principles of strengths-based leadership can be carried over to managers themselves. When nurse managers are aware of their own strengths, they can better leverage them to effectively manage difficult situations.

To prepare

  • Review the article “Know Your Own Strength.” How can strengths-based leadership improve the skills and attitudes of employees?
  • Reflect on your own personal and professional leadership strengths. Consider how you might use these strengths to manage staff members who seem to be disengaged or problematic. In addition, determine how you might use these strengths to resolve difficult situations between employees.
  • Recall a time when you either observed a disengaged or problematic employee(s) at work or observed a difficult or conflict situation between employees.
  • Imagine that you were the nurse manager in the above situation. How might you have used your strengths to effectively manage this employee or situation? Also, give some thought to the strengths of those posing the problem. How might you have used their strengths to resolve the situation?

By Day 3

Post an explanation of what you consider to be your top two strengths as a leader. Then, briefly describe the situation you selected and explain how you could leverage your own strengths (applying strengths-based leadership) to successfully manage that situation. Explain at least two ways you might also capitalize on the strengths of the employee(s) involved to successfully resolve the situation.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Suggest another way a colleague might capitalize on the identified strengths of the employee(s).
  • Ask a probing question, substantiated with additional background information and evidence or research.
  • Expand on a colleague’s posting by providing additional insights or contrasting perspectives based on readings and evidence.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience and additional research.

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Assignment & Portfolio Submission: Coaching Employees

Consider the following scenario:

You were very pleased with your decision to select Mala during your last recruitment initiative. Just out of college, Mala has the enthusiasm and professional drive that could benefit your health care organization. However, you recognize that Mala will have a lot to learn in a clinical setting. As a nurse manager, you have led many successful group trainings, but have far less experience coaching employees one-on-one. You wonder how you should approach this relationship and what steps you should take to increase the positivity and effectiveness of this experience.

Coaching is an ongoing process that is an integral function of the management role. It focuses on the development needs of the employee and is built on a relationship of trust between the leader and follower. Coaching is a powerful activity that demonstrates value of and respect for the employee. In this Assignment, you examine how you could serve as a coach to facilitate an individual’s professional development.

To prepare

  • Reflect on the information shared in the article, “Coaching Nurses: A Real Example of a Real Difference.” Which of these best practices might you use to strengthen your own coaching skills?
  • Review Chapter 7, “Coaching and Developing Others” in the course text, From Management to Leadership: Strategies for Transforming Health Care. Consider how the author compares coaching staff in a health care setting to coaching athletes, directing a movie, and conducting a symphony. Then, examine the six steps of the coaching process. How does each of the coaching steps build upon one another to create a positive and effective coaching experience?
  • In preparation for this hypothetical coaching exercise, identify one individual, staff member, or employee (from your current organization or a past setting) who could benefit from coaching. Create a pseudonym for him or her.
  • Use the six-step coaching process to develop a coaching and development plan.

Note: This assignment also serves as your portfolio submission.

To complete

By Day 7 of Week 6

Submit a 5- to 7-page paper in which you do the following:

  • Step One: Determine your intention.
    • Describe your intention and purpose for coaching this specific individual.
    • Explain the goals, skills, and/or competencies you have in mind, and define your primary focus.
    • Explain how you would engage this individual in identifying these and other development opportunities.
  • Step Two: Assess the performer.
    • Identify the individual’s strengths and level of development.
    • Explain the leadership style and interventions that would be most appropriate to help this individual achieve his or her identified goals, skills, and/or competencies.
  • Step Three: Clarify expectations and parameters.
    • Describe the roles and expectations of both you and the individual.
    • Outline the learning opportunities you could provide and the order in which they should be approached.
    • Identify the specific objectives to be achieved for each learning opportunity.
      • Explain the coaching best practices you would apply and why.
  • Step Four: Carry out the coaching intervention.
    • List the coaching questions you might develop to ensure that learning opportunities and interventions are applied as needed, and explain how any additional development opportunities might help to address your intended coaching goals.
  • Step Five: Observe performance.
    • Explain the observation method you will use to assess whether or not your coaching has been effective.
  • Step Six: Give feedback.
    • Describe how you will administer feedback to this individual.

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NURS 6221 Week 6: Performance Management

A large part of performance management involves conducting and communicating performance appraisals. Performance appraisals are powerful opportunities that allow you to engage and motivate staff. In addition, they help you to build and articulate the expectations and skills required in your setting. Much like strengths-based leadership and the six-step coaching process, performance management and the appraisal process can be effective tools to foster employee growth and to encourage the development of new knowledge.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Evaluate performance appraisal systems
  • Evaluate the impact of a positive discipline on performance management
  • Apply the six-step coaching process
  • Evaluate coaching best practices

Performance appraisals should be timely, thoughtful, consistent, thorough, and free from bias. How can performance appraisal systems be structured to facilitate this type of environment? Effective performance standards and appraisals can promote an open and continuous relationship among the nurse manager, HR professionals, and employees. How might you, as a nurse manager, use performance appraisals and other performance management strategies, such as positive discipline, in your leadership approach?

In this Discussion, you reflect on questions that commonly arise when assessing performance appraisal processes.

  • Performance Standards:
    • Who creates performance standards, and how are they communicated to employees?
    • Are performance standards consistent with quality standards commonly used in the nursing profession?
    • Do performance standards align with legal and ethical nursing practice?
  • Performance Appraisals:
    • How is employee performance (i.e., behaviors, attitudes, abilities, and skills) documented?
    • What measures, if any, protect employees from subjectivity?
    • Are employees asked to engage in any form of self-evaluation?
    • Do colleagues participate in peer evaluations such as 360-degree appraisals?
    • Does the performance appraisal process encourage employee development?
    • Aside from the written performance measures, what aspects contribute to success or failure in achieving performance improvement?

To prepare

  • Review this week’s media, “Performance Management,” and consider the best practices highlighted by this week’s presenters.
  • Reflect on the performance standards and appraisal systems used in your current organization or one with which you are familiar. With the above questions in mind, identify this organization’s strengths and areas for improvement.
    • Drawing from ideas presented in this week’s Learning Resources, think of specific ways you might improve your organization’s use of performance standards and/or the performance appraisal process.
  • Review the article, “Positive Discipline Reaps Retention.” As a nurse manager, how might you incorporate positive discipline into your performance management approach? What effect–good, bad, or indifferent–do you think it would have on your nursing staff?

By Day 3

Post a description of the performance appraisal system used in your workplace, including how performance standards are created and communicated to employees. Describe the effectiveness of the performance appraisal system by sharing at least two strengths and two areas for improvement. Conclude your posting by explaining how you might incorporate positive discipline into your performance management approach and what impact you think it will have.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Ask a probing question, substantiated with additional background information, evidence, or research.
  • Share an insight from having read a colleague’s posting, synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives.
  • Expand on a colleague’s posting by providing additional insights or contrasting perspectives based on readings and evidence.

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NURS 6221 Week 7: Fostering a Positive Workplace

Victor, a nurse manager in a critical care unit at Malabar Hospital, has always felt pride in his nursing staff. On many occasions, he has been amazed at the patience they posses and the genuine care that they provide. He has also witnessed the physical and emotional drain that this high-risk environment places on each of his nurses. Victor wonders how he can positively support them through difficult times on the floor. One day, when making his rounds, Victor stops to talk with a patient named Rachelle. After spending 90 days in the critical care unit, Rachelle is finally showing signs of improvement and regaining her strength. “Thank you so much, to you and your staff, for all that you have done. I do not think your team will ever understand how much they are helping in my recovery,” said Rachelle. “I really wish there was a way I could let them know how truly grateful I am.”

After speaking with Rachelle, Victor devised a plan for how the positive feelings of patients could be shared with nursing staff. He compiled cards, stories, and video segments of patients and families expressing their gratitude. Victor then worked with the HR department to create the first annual “Alumni Day” to honor the nurses. Victor led his staff into a brightly decorated room adorned with cards and photographs of smiling families forever grateful for the nurses’ caring spirit. Victor played the video for his nurses and also had many patients share their memories in person. Alumni Day was a success, allowing each nurse to see the power behind his or her work.

This week, you explore how nurse managers can use their leadership skills to motivate nursing staff. You also examine how positive psychology can contribute to healthy and positive workplaces.

Learning Objectives
Students will:

  • Evaluate leadership strategies for building healthy workplace relationships
  • Evaluate positive psychology strategies for increasing positive interactions in the workplace
  • Analyze the impact of intrinsic motivators on professional fulfillment *
  • Evaluate the impact of intrinsic motivators on professional performance *

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Healthy relationships form the basis for a positive workplace. When staff are engaged in their jobs, supported by one another, and feel a sense of security in their work, healthy relationships among staff members will flourish. Nurse managers can assess the workplace for healthy relationships by observing the interactions among staff members. Are trust, respect, and collegiality evident, or might some staff members display toxic or dysfunctional behaviors toward one another? When toxic or dysfunctional behaviors are evident even among the smallest cohort of staff, nurse managers must take steps to foster positive interactions. In fact, all other efforts to establish a positive workplace will likely fall short if they are not built on the foundation of healthy interpersonal relationships.

In this Discussion, you examine the interactions between employees at your current organization or one with which you are familiar. You also explore positive psychology, a theory of well-being that has helped many workplaces to increase positivity and foster healthy relationships among staff members.

To prepare

  • Review Chapter 2, “Cultivating the Leadership Relationship” in the course text, From Management to Leadership: Strategies for Transforming Health Care. Examine how leaders cultivate healthy relationships among all staff members.
  • Review the article, “Using Positive Psychology to Engage Your Staff during Difficult Times.” How can positive psychology foster healthy workplace relationships and increase staff engagement?
  • Reflect on the interactions you see in your own organization or in one with which you are familiar. What relationships do you observe across different job categories, such as RNs, LPNs, techs, and nursing assistants? Do relationship disparities exist between shifts, departments, or members of different disciplines, such as nursing staff and physicians?
  • Identify environments where unhealthy relationships most commonly occur. What leadership strategies might you use to build healthy relationships among these specific staff members? Furthermore, how could you apply positive psychology to increase positivity in this environment?

By Day 3

Post an explanation of at least two leadership strategies you could implement to build healthy relationships among staff members in the workplace you selected. Cite specific examples in your explanation by identifying the staff members you would target and explaining how your strategies would foster healthy interactions among these staff members. In addition, suggest at least one positive psychology strategy you could employ to increase the ratio of positive to negative interactions in your workplace; explain your rationale.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Validate an idea with your own experience and additional research.
  • Share a strategy your health care setting used to build healthy workplace relationships.
  • Provide additional insights into how positive psychology could help to increase positivity in a colleague’s workplace.

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NURS 6221 Week 8: Creating a Culture of Engagement

Working with phenomenal people on some of the toughest and most interesting business problems in the world [is a pro of working with Bain & Company]. You are constantly being pushed to improve and expand your skills and somehow finding room for a lot of fun [with] your co-workers.

— Consultant for Bain & Company, Glassdoor, Inc’s 2012 #1 Best Places To Work

To prepare for today’s challenging health care environment, health care organizations need employees who are energized with a passion for their work. Finding and keeping exemplary employees is one of the keys to running an effective unit, department, or organization. Given the critical shortage of health care workers, retaining employees is one of the more important responsibilities of nurse managers. In fact, some have called nurse managers the “chief retention officers” of organizations. What type of working environment encourages employees to stay? How can nurse managers foster relationships that engender a sense of satisfaction and engagement in employees similar to that expressed in the above quote?

In Week 7, you began exploring the elements that create a positive workplace. This week builds on those concepts as you explore how positive workplaces can facilitate a culture of engagement.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Assess workplaces for cultures of engagement
  • Analyze interventions that positively improve workplace culture
  • Evaluate the correlation between workplace culture and organizational commitment
  • Analyze the impact of intrinsic motivators on professional fulfillment
  • Evaluate the impact of intrinsic motivators on professional performance

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

[T]he way to create a culture of retention is, in fact, to create a culture of engagement and contribution.

—Jo Manion (2004, p. 30)

When employees feel engaged and motivated, they are often more committed to an organization. Organizational commitment is broadly defined as an employee’s intent to stay with the organization. Nurse managers can have significant influence on an organization’s culture and thereby on employee engagement and commitment.

To prepare

  • Select one of the following perspectives and complete the corresponding survey for this Discussion. Do not look at the scoring directions until after you have completed the evaluation.
    • If you hold or have held a management position in your recent or present workplace, access the document, “Creating a Culture of Engagement: Manager Survey,” found in this week’s Learning Resources.
    • If you have yet to hold a management position, or would prefer to answer the survey from the perspective of an employee, access the document, “Creating a Culture of Engagement: Employee Survey,” found in this week’s Learning Resources.
  • After you have completed the survey, reflect on the results. Based on score breakdown, select the culture cluster you consider the most critical to address in this workplace. Then, review this week’s media, “Recruitment, Retention, and Employee Development.” What strategies could you, as a nurse manager, employ to address this cluster?
  • Consider how this culture facilitates or negates your feelings of organizational commitment.

By Day 3

Post an evaluation of a recent or past workplace by sharing the total score of your survey. Explain whether this score accurately captures the culture of this workplace. Identify the culture cluster that you consider the most critical to address, and suggest at least one intervention you could initiate to effectively change this aspect of the workplace’s culture. Explain how this culture encouraged or diminished your feelings of organizational commitment.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Find a colleague whose critical culture cluster is one of your stronger ones. Share a strategy for strengthening this aspect of his or her culture.
  • Use authentic experiences and this week’s Learning Resources to evaluate a colleague’s intervention, offering suggestions and insights.
  • Assess a colleague’s workplace. Applying what you know about your own intrinsic motivators, explain why this workplace would or would not be a good fit for you.

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NURS 6221 Week 9: Managing Diversity in the Workplace

At the 2012 National Leadership and Education Conference, the University of California Davis Medical Center received an award for promoting diversity. The Med Center was recognized as “Best in Class” for Diversity Management and Workforce, a category that is judged based on a hospital’s efforts to recruit, retain, and promote minority individuals in the workplace.

The advantages of diversity in the workplace are noteworthy; however, diversity also adds another layer of complexity to human resource management. Diversity can bring with it wide variations in how situations are approached, interpreted, and even communicated. It can also add to the depth and richness of the workplace. When all employees are respected and contribute to discussions and problem solving, the solutions tend to be more robust and effective.

The challenge for nurse managers is to appreciate and build on the various strengths that each individual brings to the workplace while also building cohesive relationships that capitalize on the very best that each employee has to offer.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze the impact of diversity in workplaces
  • Evaluate strategies nurse managers can use to mitigate diversity issues
  • Analyze difficulties that work environments might pose to older workers*
  • Evaluate strategies for engaging and retaining older workers*

* The Assignment related to this Learning Objective is introduced this week and submitted in Week 10.

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Creating and managing a diverse workforce is a process, not a destination.

—R. Roosevelt Thomas, Jr.

What concepts come to mind when you think of diversity? What kinds of diversity exist in your workplace? How does diversity impact communication, working relationships, productivity, and patient care?

In the workplace, focusing on differences can create divisiveness. Nurse managers should approach diversity as a way to highlight, communicate, and build on the commonalities of their workforce. Modeling this behavior can encourage appreciation for diversity and create a more positive workplace environment. When managing a diverse workforce, nurse managers should never make assumptions about an individual’s motivations, goals, or work ethic based upon personal traits such as age, gender, race, or culture. Nurse managers should strive to facilitate an inclusive environment for all.

To prepare

  • Review the article, “Diversity within Nursing: Effects on Nurse-Nurse Interaction, Job Satisfaction, and Turnover.” Examine Figure 1 on p. 218. Determine how these and other diversity issues might impact the interaction of nurses in the workplace.
  • Consider situations in your current organization or one with which you are familiar in which obvious diversity exists. How do these types of diversity issues affect the daily work environment?
  • Examine this week’s Learning Resources to identify strategies for finding commonalities among workers. How might these strategies also help to increase appreciation of diversity within the workplace?

By Day 3

Post an explanation of how diversity-related issues impact your current organization or one with which you are familiar. If you do not believe there are any issues related to diversity, explain how this workplace instills a culture of acceptance and positivity. Conclude your posting by describing at least two commonalties everyone in this workplace shares and at least one new strategy you could implement to increase appreciation of both differences and similarities.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Appraise a colleague’s strategy by providing insight into whether or not this strategy could effectively mitigate diversity issues. Support your comments by using authentic examples and references to this week’s Learning Resources.
  • Suggest an additional strategy a colleague could use to mitigate diversity issues.

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NURS 6221 Week 10: Developing Cohesive Teams

The nursing profession is arguably one of the more fast-paced and demanding professions in today’s job market. This can be especially true for nurses working in hospitals. Consider the following scenario:

Kyoko, a nurse manager for a surgical neurologic unit, noticed increased levels of frustration as her nurses began their shifts. Many commented that they wanted to do a good job but felt that their workloads prohibited them from doing so. In an effort to reduce her staff’s overwhelming feelings of stress, Kyoko searched nursing literature to find an effective leadership solution. In an issue of Nursing Management, Kyoko read about the “huddle up” strategy. The next day, Kyoko called her nurses together to inform them that at the start of their 12-hour shifts, they would all “huddle up” to discuss workloads, patient conditions, and any general questions they might need addressed. Before long, Kyoko saw a dramatic improvement in her staff. Not only did the nurses seem more confident and relaxed, but the increase in camaraderie and team cohesiveness was felt by all staff members. This 5–10 minute leadership strategy brought her unit back on the right track.

This week, you explore how nurse managers create, develop, and lead effective teams within their units, departments, and health care settings.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze leadership strategies used to build effective teams
  • Analyze difficulties that work environments might pose to older workers
  • Evaluate strategies for engaging and retaining older workers

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.

—Henry Ford

A critical skill for all nurse managers is the ability to create, develop, and lead effective teams. When people are part of an effective and well-functioning team, they are more productive and have a stronger commitment to the organization. Nurse managers have a responsibility to create teams that fulfill functional needs within their units or departments. These can include leadership teams, ad hoc project teams, or primary work teams.

As a nurse manager, there is a variety of ways that you can enhance team functioning. The first step is developing the structural elements of the team and then designing the team with the appropriate membership. Just as you must critically examine each application during the employment process, so will you critically examine the skills and attributes of each employee before appointing him or her to a collective team.

In this week’s Discussion, you lay the groundwork for creating and developing a team for your unit, department, or health care setting. You also identify leadership strategies that you could employ to increase the team’s organizational effectiveness.

To prepare

  • Review Chapter 5, “The Art of Effectively Facilitating Processes” from the course text, From Management to Leadership: Strategies for Transforming Health Care. Carefully examine the section, “Essential Elements of a Team” to identify the six steps of creating an effective team.
  • Consider a team you might create for your current organization or one with which you are familiar. For example, is there a project to be accomplished or a problem to be solved? Perhaps there is a need for a leadership team within your unit or department?
  • Identify the purpose or goal for your team. Then, reflect on the following questions:
    • What type of team would you create (leadership, ad hoc, or primary work team) to accomplish this purpose or goal? What are the benefits or disadvantages of creating this type of team?
    • What staff members would you want on this team? Why? How could their skill sets and positions make them effective team members?
  • Explore this week’s Learning Resources to identify leadership strategies you might employ before, during, and after the team-building phase. For example, what leadership strategies might influence synergy among team members while also increasing the effectiveness of the team?

By Day 3

Post a description of the team you would create, including the purpose or goal the team would serve, the team type, and the specific skills each member would contribute as well as their job positions. Describe at least two leadership strategies you could implement to help this team effectively achieve its purpose or goal.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Critically appraise a colleague’s team description. Provide an additional leadership strategy he or she could use to further improve the effectiveness of the team.
  • Find a colleague who would like to implement a team similar to one that has been implemented in your workplace. Share an insight into how your organization benefited from this type of team and the leadership strategies management employed to support the work of the team.

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NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

NURS 6221 Week 11: Social Technologies in the Workplace

Social media is everywhere, and personal use of this technology has found its way into the workplace. This use, however, presents unique social and ethical ramifications, particularly with regard to patient safety and privacy. Nurse managers can partner with HR to educate staff on organizational policies in an effort to safeguard the organization from any legal or financial harm the use of social technologies may inadvertently introduce.

With a basic knowledge of employment law, managers and HR professionals can better address the novel legal and organizational issues that accompany the growing popularity of social technologies. In addition, taking time to analyze how social media is used by staff members can help you develop an effective plan for monitoring the use and benefits of these types of technologies.

In addition to social technologies in the workplace, this week you explore aspects of conflict management. You explore the various types of conflict that can occur in health care settings. You also examine methods nurse managers can use to manage such conflict.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Evaluate social, ethical, and legal ramifications related to social technologies in the workplace
  • Evaluate workplace policies on social technologies

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

As a nurse manager, it is imperative to understand how social technologies can impact productivity, peer-to-peer relationships, and patient safety within the workplace. Collaborating with HR to understand policies and the organization’s expectations related to the use of social technologies allows nurse managers to more effectively and appropriately integrate today’s social platforms while mitigating the occurrence of inappropriate behaviors.

For this week’s Discussion, your Instructor will assign you to one of the scenarios below. You will then use that scenario to investigate the social, ethical, and legal ramifications of social technologies.

Scenario One: You have recently been promoted to charge nurse for the day shift in your department. As a result of this promotion, your former peers are now reporting directly to you. You have been working in your setting for five years and consider many of these peers to be your friends. The way that one of your friends posts on social media sites has always bothered you. Many times, her comments are inappropriate, discussing her negative feelings about “ignorant superiors” and “annoying patients.” You also know that she frequently accesses these sites for extended periods of time while patients are waiting to be helped. Now that she reports directly to you, how do you address this? If your workplace does not have a formal policy on social media use, how can you adapt her behaviors to align with the expectations of nursing professionalism?

Scenario Two: It has been a little over a year since you accepted your nurse management position at a local pediatrics office. Since then, you have observed that many nurses seem uneasy when they work with one of your top physicians. You wonder why so many nurses are hesitant to work with such an experienced physician, particularly since most of your families rave about her dedication and caring nature toward their children. One day, while taking careful observation of your staff, you watch a nurse take out a patient chart and begin to text. The nurse becomes visibly upset as she sees you approach. When you question her about her behavior, she confides that the physician asks all nurses to text patient test results to her. The nurse admits that she feels uncomfortable sending private information via text message and only did so after multiple requests and increasing pressure from the physician. According to ethical and legal guidelines, who is at fault for this error in judgment? Since the nurse is the employee who sent the information, should action be taken against her, against the physician, or against both parties?

Scenario Three: A physician in your setting is an avid user of social media. On many of his personal pages, which include blogs about his various outdoor hobbies, he plasters pictures of himself and his friends out drinking. He also tends to post extreme comments about politics and the economy. Many in your setting joke with him about the intensity of his social life, to which he always comments, “Work hard, play hard.” Though his actions are not hurting the morale of the setting, and his posts are always before or after work hours, should anything be said to this physician? In the future, could your setting experience any ramifications because of his presence in social media?

Scenario Four: The environment in your critical care unit has always been somewhat hectic. However, over the last few months, the morale in your unit has noticeably deteriorated. You learn that nurses have begun to share mass e-mail chains complaining about unfair scheduling treatment. As the nurse manager, you have always tried your best to schedule staff fairly and even allow them to switch their shifts when personal problems arise. Since your effort to talk with staff individually does not seem to be working, you decide to hold a town hall meeting to openly discuss these issues. As you prepare the meeting announcement, you notice e-mails from your hospital administrator, chief operating officer and director of human resources. All are wondering why their inboxes have been inundated with e-mails from upset nurses in your unit. How do you respond to these e-mails? Furthermore, how should you address this situation to improve the morale of your unit?

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

To prepare

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources, focusing on the appropriate and inappropriate use of social technologies in the workplace.
  • Conduct further research on the social, ethical, and legal issues that result from inappropriate use of social technologies both inside and outside work hours.
    • For example, what laws protect the privacy and free speech of employees? How can workplaces legally safeguard themselves from various social technology issues such as defamation, misrepresentation, or misuse by individual employees? Of what legal ramifications, such as patient privacy and confidentiality laws, should managers be aware?
  • Reflect on the scenario to which you have been assigned.
    • How might employee use of social technologies impact the rest of the setting? How might it impact the care given to patients?
    • As the nursing manager who oversees the employee(s), what strategies (if any) would you employ to effectively address this situation?
  • Consider the social technology policies of your past or present workplace.
    • With regard to employee use of social media, do you believe the workplace policy is effective? Why or why not? As a nurse manager, could you use this policy to effectively address the behaviors in your assigned scenario?

Note: Before you submit your initial post, replace the subject line (“Week 11 Discussion”) with “Review of Case Study ___” identifying the number of the case study you were assigned.

By Day 3

Post an explanation of the possible social, ethical, and/or legal ramifications of your assigned scenario. Explain the policy your current or past workplace has on the use of social technologies and how effective you believe the policy is. If your workplace does not have a policy, explain what the accepted practices or expectations are for your setting. Has lack of policy led to any problems? Support your responses by referencing authentic examples from the workplace and this week’s Learning Resources as appropriate.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 5

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Ask a probing question, substantiated with additional background information, evidence, or research.
  • Share an insight from having read a colleague’s posting, synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience and additional research.

NURS 6221: Managing Human Resources Entire Course

High-pressure environments, life-or-death implications, constant change, and long days of exhausting work … It is not surprising that conflicts arise in health care settings. In the fast-paced environment in which nurses work, small differences in decision making, processes, work ethic, and personal characteristics can quickly escalate

As a nurse manager, you need to develop and model skills that effectively address conflict situations. Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, offers sound advice that can be applied to conflict management and resolution. In Habit 4, Think Win-Win, Covey (2004) explains, “[m]any people think in terms of either/or: either you’re nice or you’re tough. Win-win requires that you be both. It is a balancing act between courage and consideration.” Ultimately, how you manage conflict in your setting will determine whether you foster an environment that breeds contempt or one that fosters growth.

Conflict abounds in any workplace; it is a normal part of organizational life. Instead of avoiding or ignoring conflict, the role of the nurse manager is to coach employees through conflict situations and to exercise judgment on how and when to intervene. When managed effectively and focused on substantive issues, conflict can actually lead to better outcomes. However, when interpersonal conflicts go unaddressed, employee morale and engagement–two factors that can seriously impact quality of patient care—will dwindle.

When nurse managers observe employees engaging in toxic or inappropriate workplace behaviors, they must prepare to give difficult feedback. Delivering difficult feedback can be challenging for nurse managers, as they must address employees in a way that is authoritative, supportive, and resolute. One strategy nurse managers can use to deliver difficult feedback is to employ the scripting framework. In this week’s Discussion, you gain experience with using the scripting framework to resolve a conflict situation that you have observed in your past or present workplace.

To prepare

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources, focusing on the various forms of conflict that can occur in the workplace.
  • Consider the types of conflict, including bullying, horizontal violence, toxic and disruptive employees, misuse of social media, unbalanced power, harassment, and favoritism, that exist in your current organization or past place of employment.
  • Select one type of conflict you have observed. How has conflict impacted your work environment? How have nurse mangers attempted to address conflict situations?
  • Examine the six-step scripting framework for delivering difficult feedback in Chapter 7 of the course text,From Management to Leadership: Strategies for Transforming Health Care. Then, use this framework to script a conversation between you and the employee(s) involved in the conflict situation you selected.
  • When drafting your script, reflect on how HR might be able to help you in addressing this issue, both before you talk to this employee and if the problem continues to exist.

By Day 4

Post a brief overview of the conflict you selected and how this specific type of conflict has impacted the work environment. Share the script you drafted and explain at least one way you would enlist HR’s help in managing this situation. Support your response by referencing authentic examples from the workplace and the Learning Resources as applicable.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6

Managing conflict effectively includes receiving feedback on your own performance. As such, respond on or before Day 6 to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using the following approach:

  • Critically appraise the effectiveness of your colleague’s script by placing yourself in the position of the employee receiving this difficult feedback. How would you feel if a manager said this to you? Would this conversation prompt you to change your behavior? Why or why not? What strengths did the script have, and where might clarification be needed?

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