In the nursing work environment, establishing a framework of cohesion and civility is of critical importance to sustain a positive and meaningful approach to patient care. All nurses must work collaboratively to ensure that the work environment is cohesive, supportive, and appropriate for managing the needs of all patients. All nursing-related behaviors must be professional, timely, and ethically responsible to ensure that patient care and treatment are not compromised and there are opportunities for growth and learning from each experience. However, this cannot be accomplished without review and accountability among nurses regarding the needs of all patients and recognition that nurses have a responsibility to their patients and the practice environment above all else. Therefore, a strong effort to engage in civil and professional behavior is required by all nurses and any problems related to meeting these objectives must be addressed in a professional and timely manner.
Nursing Civility, Leadership, and Accountability
All nurses must work proactively to ensure that the work environment is civil and professional on a continuous basis. This requires a high-level understanding of civil behavior and accountability for all actions, while also considering different approaches to improve performance. Civility within nursing practice signifies showing respect for other people and recognizing that although individuals bring different ideas to the table, their views should be respected and supported by others (Clark, 2017). In this context, all nurses should act responsibly and in a civil and professional manner to facilitate positive performance outcomes and successful results (Clark, 2017). Nurses must recognize that they bring different skills and ideas to the workplace and that all voices should have a chance to be heard, even if they are unique and different from the rest (Clark, 2017). It is important for all nurses to recognize their responsibility to be professional and make decisions which are respectful of others on a regular basis to promote greater cohesion and civility among staff members and during their interactions with patients which impact their performance outcomes.
Nurses should demonstrate civility on a regular basis in the workplace environment by supporting open lines of communication and strengthening bonds associated with common goals and objectives, and this is best accomplished by showing gratitude and support for the needs of all patients. Nurses must effectively collaborate and address any weaknesses or limitations which impact their performance, and if they are empowered to perform at a high level, this will positively impact their professional growth and development (Regan, Laschinger, & Wong, 2016). However, this requires nursing leadership who can address these challenges and aim to unite nurses towards a set of common goals and objectives by setting an example for others to follow (Regan et al., 2016).
Incivility and Ethics in the Workplace
In the workplace environment, the risk of civility among nurses may increase when the patient population and pool of nurses are diverse. Therefore, it is important to acknowledge differences in a positive manner and to set aside any reservations or beliefs which could be detrimental to the practice setting or patient care. This reflects the importance of advancing nursing leadership to be more engaged in developing standards to improve civility and ethical decision-making which has an impact on the practice setting and on patients (Regan et al., 2016).
Methods to Address Unprofessional Nursing Behavior
Nurse leaders must address unprofessional behavior as a learning tool to improve performance. Specifically, there must be a greater emphasis on the appropriate leadership style to encourage nurses to be successful within their roles and to act in a civil manner on a regular basis (Kaiser, 2017). It also requires nurse leaders to develop leadership styles which are appropriate for the nurses who work in the unit and the patient populations who are served so that nurses can provide excellent patient care in a continuous manner (Kaiser, 2017). Nurse leaders must identify and address gaps in nurse cohesion and any conflicts that may arise, as these negatively impact the practice environment and minimize the scope of work and benefits that nurses provide to their patients.
Professional Code of Ethics
A professional code of ethics is required in nursing practice to ensure that patients receive high quality care and treatment on a regular basis and that nurses act in the best interests of their patients rather than their own. This is an essential component of the practice environment and requires nurses to recognize the value of a code of ethics which governs their practices and supports greater cohesion, collaboration, and communication among staff members (Epstein & Turner, 2015). These actions reflect the importance of advancing the code of ethics to support nursing-based objectives and to empower nurses to make ethically responsible decisions in treating patients and in supporting positive treatment outcomes in the workplace setting (Epstein & Turner, 2015).
Nurses must act professionally and respectfully of their patients and colleagues across all situations. This requires an understanding of the nursing code of ethics and the ability to maintain civility and respect for all persons in the workplace environment. This practice requires an effective understanding of the key characteristics which impact the profession and the responsibility that nurses play in providing excellent patient care and treatment with continuity and compassion. This is of critical importance to their growth and development as nurses, their collegial work with others, and their responses to important issues which impact the practice environment and the patients whom they serve.
- Clark, C. M. (2017). An Evidence-Based Approach to Integrate Civility, Professionalism, and
Ethical Practice Into Nursing Curricula. Nurse educator, 42(3), 120-126.
- Epstein, B., & Turner, M. (2015). The nursing code of ethics: Its value, its history. OJIN: The
Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 20(2).
- Kaiser, J. A. (2017). The relationship between leadership style and nurse‐to‐nurse incivility:
turning the lens inward. Journal of nursing management, 25(2), 110-118.
- Regan, S., Laschinger, H. K., & Wong, C. A. (2016). The influence of empowerment, authentic
leadership, and professional practice environments on nurses’ perceived interprofessional collaboration. Journal of nursing management, 24(1).