I worked with Bob for 16 years. He was a fun guy, and we would spend hours on slow days tossing EKG stickers at the clock or seeing how far our spit would drop from the stairwell. I mean, you have to be fun to do something like this. Then we'd go out to the nurses station at 4 am and flirt with the female nurses. On our days off we also had fun together.
I also remember when it was really busy once Bob and I were taking care of a critical patient. We so happened to rush into the supply room at the same time, and we realized there was no oxygen tubing. Bob said, "Watch this!" as he ripped open a venturi mask and took out the oxygen tubing. "Now we have oxygen tubing."
A few years later Bob became an RT boss and he completely forgot what it was like to be an RT. It was like he completely morphed from a peasant to a dragon. Instead of having fun with us he put a stop to all fun. He was still nice, but he was meticulous at enforcing the rules set forth by the administrators. He morphed from all fun to all no fun. Everyone hated him. He was great at managing the department, but his communication skills dropped off the southern end of the map.
So when he moved on and I became the RT Boss, I decided I wanted to be everything Bob was and everything Bob was not. During my interview I said to the admins questioning me: "Bob was a great boss. He did many great things for this department. I want to continue all he did. Where Bob failed was he was a poor communicator. He made decisions and forced them on us, or at least it appeared that way. When someone approached him he did all the talking. The result was a low morale. I think we would all be better off if we all felt like we were a part of the process. That's the best way to get the best results, at the best cost, and the lowest amount of waste."
And then I added, "At least that's what I think. And I understand you may not hire me because I'm being truthful here, but I think this is important in a boss. This is from my observation."
I was hired. And I kept my door open at all times. And I kept my voice off. The sign on my door read: "Come in and be heard." That's my advice for prospective and current RT bosses. Work among the staff, not above them.
Thanks once again Will.