Job experiences, challenges, revelations and narratives of nurse academics. A qualitative study.

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Advanced Nursing, 2022, 78, (8), pp. 2622-2633
Issue Date:
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AIM: To explore the views and experiences of nurse academics about their professional work life. DESIGN: A qualitative exploratory interview study. METHODS: Data were collected during 2018/2019 using a semi-structured interview method with 19 experienced academic nurses from a range of academic levels in Australia. All interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed using a narrative approach. Ethics approval was granted by the relevant University Human Research Ethics Committee. RESULTS: Participants provided detailed insights into the type of daily job stressors they faced. They shared narratives about their personal job experiences and how, at times, they chose to remain silent to maintain a cordial working relationship with some of their senior colleagues and leaders. The main themes were identified included a lack of work-life balance, incivility towards staff, increasing workloads and inequitable distribution, lack of recognition, negative workplace culture, lack of awareness of the importance of political astuteness and lack of leadership skills. CONCLUSION: To ensure a sustainable academic nursing workforce and provide a clearer understanding of job stress and what contributes to faculty decision to leave, areas of priority and strategies that needed attention were identified. These included effective mentoring of less-experienced staff and leadership styles that promote greater inclusiveness, being heard, valued and recognized, improved work-life balance and the need to have a sense of belonging. IMPACT: The study explored the job experiences of nurse academics and identified occupational stressors that directly influenced their daily work life. The findings have global implications for the recruitment and sustainability of nurse academics. This also impacts on their professional and work-life balance.
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