Bullying and employee turnover among healthcare workers: a three-wave prospective study
Article first published online: 15 JUN 2011
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Journal of Nursing Management
Special Issue: This issue: Opportunities and challenges facing the future global nursing and midwifery workforce Issue editor: Mary Douglas
Volume 19, Issue 6, pages 742–751, September 2011
How to Cite
HOGH, A., HOEL, H. and CARNEIRO, I. G. (2011), Bullying and employee turnover among healthcare workers: a three-wave prospective study. Journal of Nursing Management, 19: 742–751. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2834.2011.01264.x
- Issue published online: 7 SEP 2011
- Article first published online: 15 JUN 2011
- Accepted for publication: 6 March 2011
- intention to leave;
- prospective study;
- work conditions
hogh a., hoel h. & carneiro i.g. (2011) Journal of Nursing Management19, 742–751 Bullying and employee turnover among healthcare workers: a three-wave prospective study
Aim To investigate the risk of turnover among targets of bullying at work.
Background Exposure to bullying seems to leave targets with intentions to leave their workplaces. However, it is uncertain to what extent they actually leave.
Method Data were collected by questionnaires in a three-wave study among Danish healthcare workers at the time of graduation (T1), 1 (T2) and 2 years (T3) later. We followed 2154 respondents who participated in all three waves.
Results The first year after graduation, 9.2% reported being bullied at work, 1.8% frequently. Follow-up analyses showed a strong relationship between exposure to bullying at T2 and turnover at T3 [odds ratio (OR) for frequently bullied = 3.1]. The inclusion of push factors such as low social support and low sense of community, intention to leave and ill health did not change the relation between bullying and turnover significantly. Three reasons for quitting stood out among reasons given by the bullied respondents: poor leadership, being exposed to negative behaviour and health problems.
Conclusion Bullying may be costly to an organization in terms of staff turnover and subsequent recruitment and training of replacements.
Impact for Nursing Management Managers should regularly monitor the psychosocial work environment. To prevent bullying local policies and procedures should be developed, implemented and evaluated.