PurposeFirst-line nurse managers are frequently torn between conflicting demands from management and employees, and previous research suggests that nurse managers use a variety of responses to cope with these demands. The purpose of this paper is to explore the influence of social support on nurse managers’ responses to role-conflict.Design/methodology/approachTwo focused ethnographic studies involving participant observation and interviews with seven first-line nurse managers were completed. One study included first-line nurse managers from four units in two municipalities (2005), while the second included three first-line nurse managers from a hospital in Norway (2015-2016).FindingsThree types of responses were identified: the embracing managerialism career, the emphasising managerialism career and the emphasising professionalism career. Emphasising managerialism was associated with role distance from the role of nurse, whereas emphasising professionalism involved role distance from the managerial role.Originality/valueThis study provides insights into first-line nurse managers’ responses to role conflict, by identifying the mechanisms involved and an opportunity to develop a theoretical framework for future studies among nurse managers.
Leadership in Health Services – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jun 28, 2019
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