Florida Southwestern State College Nursing Leadership Conflict Resolution Stratagies

In the following situations, choose the most appropriate conflict resolution strategy (avoiding, smoothing, accommodating, competing, compromising, or collaborating). Support your decision with rationale and explain why other methods of conflict management were not used.

Situation 1

You are the ICU charge nurse and have just finished an exhausting 8 hours on duty. Working with you today were two nurses who work 12-hour shifts. Each of you were assigned two patients, all with high acuity levels. You are glad that you are going out of town tonight to attend an important seminar because you are certainly tired. You are also pleased that you scheduled yourself an 8-hour shift today and that your replacement is coming through the door. You will just have time to give report and catch your plane.

It is customary for 12-hour nurses to continue with their previous patients and for assignments not to be changed when 8- and 12-hour staff are working together. Therefore, you proceed to give report on your patients to the 8-hour nurse coming on duty. One of your patients is acutely ill with fever of unknown origin and is in the isolation room. It is suspected that he has meningitis. Your other patient is a multiple trauma victim. In the middle of your report, the oncoming nurse says that she has just learned that she is pregnant. She says, “I can’t take care of a possible meningitis patient. I’ll have to trade with one of the 12-hour nurses.” You approach the 12-hour nurses, and they respond angrily, “We took care of all kinds of patients when we were pregnant, and we are not changing patients with just 4 hours left in our shift.”

When you repeat this message to the oncoming nurse, she says, “Either they trade or I go home!” Your phone call to the nursing office reveals that because of a flu epidemic, there are absolutely no personnel to call in, and all the other units are already short staffed.

Situation 2

You are a new nurse working on a busy medical/surgical floor. The mode of patient care delivery used on the unit is team nursing. You have grown increasingly frustrated, however, with a licensed vocational nurse (LVN)/licensed practical nurse (LPN) on your team who is unwilling to answer call lights. You have directly observed her both ignore call lights and go out of her way to avoid answering the lights. When you confront her, she always provides an excuse such as she was on her way to do something for another patient or that she did not notice the blinking call light. The end result is that you often must run from one end of the hall to the other to answer the call lights because patient safety could be at risk. Your frustration level has risen to the point that you no longer wish to work with this person.

The book below is what we use for the class…use this or any nursing reference 2010 or higher

Marquis, B. L., & Huston, C. J. (2017). Leadership and management functions in nursing: Theory and application (9th ed.). Retrieved from http://www.LWW.com

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