Ask the nursing expert

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Ask the nursing expert
Ask the nursing expert
I recently had two of my employees arguing loudly at the nursing station. How should I proceed without blowing my cool?

First, calm the crowd down. There are undoubtedly spectators. Take them both aside and let them both explain the issue, allowing uninterrupted time to speak.

Then, in spite of their sense of urgency to address this issue, point out how unprofessional their behavior was and why. Talk about the potential ears of visitors and the example being set for other staff members. Remind them of how each of them would dislike being scolded in public and that their behavior is no better.

Ask each of them how they could have handled the situation differently. Insist that they call their peers together and explain why their behavior was unacceptable and give a more professional way of handling disagreements in the workplace.

Writing a verbal reprimand is up to you.

As a relatively new supervisor, I am trying to “win over” my employees, but I'm afraid I am getting too friendly with them. What would you suggest?


As a supervisor, you are not expected to be friends with all of the staff you supervise. Staff often feel that if you are their “friend,” you will overlook their mistakes and short cuts.

You will find it hard to coach, teach and mentor as their friend. Some of your staff will accuse you of favoritism. You want to earn their respect of you as their supervisor, and someone they can go to when they need help while carrying out their duties.

When there is an emergency or crisis, your staff need to know you as their leader, who they turn to for direction, not as their friend. Lead by example, demonstrate your credibility and maintain a professional relationship with your staff, and you will create a team that will follow you anywhere!
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