Exploring the relationship between job satisfaction, bullying, and authentic leadership among medical-surgical nurses

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Bennett, Karen
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Background: Research suggests that medical/surgical nurses have lower job satisfaction than nurses in other areas. Research also reports that 80% of nurses will experience bullying in their careers and that leadership style has a significant impact on the organizational work environment. Authentic leadership is a relatively new concept, which has been linked to increased job satisfaction and decreased bullying. Although job satisfaction has been widely explored, the relationship between job satisfaction, bullying, and authentic leadership in medical-surgical nurses has not been studied. Therefore, purpose of this thesis study was to use the Organizational Framework for Predicting Nurse Retention to explore the relationship between workplace bullying, job satisfaction, and authentic leadership among medical-surgical nurses. Methods: As part of a larger study, a cross-sectional survey was utilized (N=317). Invitations to participate were sent to all medical-surgical nurses in Manitoba, via the College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba. Results: The findings revealed that an alarming 43% of nurses had been reportedly bullied (occasionally/ severely) at work. However, 65% of the participants reported overall job satisfaction (i.e., satisfied/ very satisfied) and rated their managers as relatively authentic. While bivariate and multivariate regression analysis revealed significant relationships among the three main study concepts, control/autonomy emerged as a central and common influencing factor. Discussion: Based on these findings, control/autonomy is key factor in the medical-surgical nursing environment. Therefore, strategies to decrease bullying and increase job satisfaction should focus on developing authentic leadership in nurse managers and increasing perceived control and autonomy for nurses working in medical-surgical areas. Further studies with more diverse nursing populations are needed to support this novel research evidence.
Bullying, Leadership, Job Satisfaction