I work in a hospital, and the new director in my department has changed all of our schedules. We are now forced to work 5 days per week plus all recognized holidays and are not allowed to socialize. I have been there for 20 years, and the last 10 years have worked only 4 days a week. Because of the changes, I've had to take time off for emotional stress. What are my options?


With your director being new, she is probably trying to make a positive and immediate noticeable impact to impress her management. New directors/managers are notorious for enacting change and wanting to make their mark quickly.

Unfortunately, yours may be failing to consider the morale of department employees. Employees in any difficult work situation (that's you) have several options when they don't like the changes they are faced with:

1) resist - form a union, sign a petition, approach upper management and/or HR as a group to complain, file grievances

2) flee - quit, retire, request a transfer to a different department, go part-time if that's an option

3) freeze - go out on stress or other medical leave so you can press "pause" on dealing with the situation

4) adapt - figure out a way to make it work, realizing you'll probably outlast her.

As you consider your response, ask yourself these questions:

How are your coworkers coping with the change? Are they having as difficult a time as you with the changes? Talk with those you trust. Talk with your direct manager as well about the changes. Can she help? What are the director's reasons for the changes? Are the changes permanent? (Certainly you can't be expected to work all recognized holidays forever.) Are you a source of the problems or are you simply feeling the pain of a broad sweeping policy change aimed at correcting problems that should have been dealt with individually (e.g., only certain people tend to socialize too much, now everyone is punished for their habits)?

Ask for a copy of these new policies in writing as the changes are made. Oftentimes, they look more ridiculous once they appear in writing and you as an experienced employee can poke holes in them as someone who is "concerned" about patients and employees. Burnout is a real thing among nurses and other medical personnel, and that's what she's flirting with. Does she really want to deal with the consequences of mistakes made by burned out nurses?

Updated on July 8, 2018

Original Article:

Job Burnout: Frazzled, Fed up, and Running on Empty
By FlourishAnyway

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