A great deal of the day is spent in the workplace, and it is subconscious that workplace behaviors transition into “everyday life” attributes. When working, it is human nature to want to “do our best” and to “be our best”. It makes sense to assume that the behaviors exhibited at work are “good” and they should be carried over into other aspects of life. But, this is not always the case.

For example:

  • Skipping meals. Nursing shifts are usually very busy and chaotic. The performance evaluation is often based on productivity. So, it makes sense to think that, if breaks for meals are taken, then production will increase. However, this is not always the case.
  • Sharing phones. When many people share unit phones, the receivers are not always cleaned. This sets the stage for germ transmission.
  • Utilizing poor body mechanics. Usually, proper body mechanics are emphasized and taught during employee or school-based orientation, but how quickly they are ignored. If the body is poorly aligned, there is a greater likelihood for injury. Nurses are forever interacting with patients-bending, lifting, transferring are all commonplace motions. And, to prevent injury, good body mechanics are a must (Susan Kreimer, 2010).
  • Breaching confidentiality. If the workplace culture does not emphasize the importance of patient confidentiality, then a patient’s admission or diagnosis can be exposed. Even if clinicians are casually discussing a patient, this information can be overheard. Similarly, if computers are not put to sleep and/or if faxes are not covered, patient information can be exposed.
  • Inefficiently using time. In many cases, nurses document inefficiently, and delegation is difficult. In turn, time after the shift is spent documenting, and this sets the stage for fatigue and burn-out. Similarly, overtime is often rarely approved (Susan Wittenberg)