Constructive criticism versus disciplinary actions on a nursing unit I. Constructive Criticism vs Disciplinary Actions on a nursing unit A. Define constructive criticism vs disciplinary actions 1. Constructive construction is an important part of the manager's role…
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On the other hand, disciplinary actions are means of dealing with unfavorable job-related behavior, especially those which do not meet with work and performance standards (US Legal, 2012). The primary purpose of these actions is to support the employee in understanding that performance issues for improvement exist. It is basically a way of imposing discipline for the employees (Hessler and Humphreys, 2008). While constructive criticisms provide a means for the employee to re-evaluate his actions and further improve on these, disciplinary actions are imposed punishment for failing to live up to the standards of the practice (Kennedy, 2006). Constructive criticism is more palatable for employees who can choose to consider the criticism as a means of improving their practice; however disciplinary actions are mostly met with disfavor due to its final and imposing nature on the work of employees (Hendren, 2011). B. What are likely outcomes to delivered action? 1. In order to deliver the necessary actions while still retaining employee productivity, it is important to first identify the unacceptable action, specifically indicating what the staff member is doing or is failing to do well (Hendren, 2011). The focus in effect is in the action, not the behavior or his personality. Specifying what the employee did wrong is also an essential part of achieving the best outcomes in establishing constructive criticism (Nursing Times, 2007). It is also important to explain the outcome, which behavior is not acceptable and how the action negatively impacts on productivity and on patient outcomes. Descriptive terms must also be used in order to establish how the behavior is wrong and how such behavior can be changed (Nursing Times, 2007). The expectations must also be indicated and clearly established from the very start. The employee must know what behavior is unacceptable and the various actions which can be applied to improve behavior. 2. Personal feelings must also be set aside when giving constructive criticism. There are various outcomes to delivered action and for employees, their actions may produce unfavorable or favorable outcomes (Nursing Times, 2007). In giving feedback to employees, personal and subjective opinions have to be set aside (Clynes and Raftery, 2008). Saying to the employee that they are “useless” is an unnecessary comment and achieves nothing except feelings of discontent in the employee. It degrades the employee and makes his performance even worse (Nursing Times, 2007). Instead, the focus of the criticism must be on the activity, what was not done, what was done well, and what the criticism would be expected to achieve. The criticism must also be clear and concise, as well as professional, indicating positive feedback with information on how to improve actions and performance (Hendren, 2011). Asking the employee how he feels about his performance is a means of achieving improved outcomes and constructive benefits for the overall nursing profession. The manner of giving the feedback must focus on the problem, not the individual (Hendren, 2011). It must be direct and not contain any mixed and confusing elements. It must also be given in person and in private, preventing any embarrassment for individuals involved. The employee should also be involved in the discussion, allowing him to express his issues with his work, and inquiring about his coping skills and difficulties (Nursing Times,
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