Workplace Bullying and Newly Licensed Registered Nurses: An Evolutionary Concept Analysis

Academic Article


  • Workplace bullying (WPB) among nurses, especially newly licensed registered nurses (NLRNs), negatively affects nurse, patient, and organizational outcomes. Despite empirical evidence addressing the prevalence and impact of WPB, the behavior continues to persist within nursing work environments. Increased conceptual clarity of WPB is needed for interventions to be developed, executed, and evaluated. The purposes of this concept analysis, in which we used Rodgers’ evolutionary method, were to obtain a clearer understanding of WPB, to differentiate the concept from other forms of workplace violence, and to describe a definition of WPB consistently used in the literature. Three attributes specific to WPB included negative behaviors directed toward an individual who perceives themselves to be a target, a time frame of experiencing these negative behaviors (e.g., daily or weekly) for a prolonged period (e.g., several weeks), and the inclusion of a power gradient or hierarchy between the bully and target. Antecedents identified for WPB included a scarcity of resources and poor leadership and management. Consequences associated with WPB included adverse nurse, patient, and health care organizational outcomes. WPB was conceptually defined as any negative behavior, exhibited by a nurse of either perceived or actual power, that was repeatedly (i.e., daily or weekly) and persistently directed toward NLRNs who have difficulty defending themselves against the behavior. Implications for researchers, health care organizations, nurse leaders, and nurses are included.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Anusiewicz CV; Shirey MR; Patrician PA
  • Start Page

  • 250
  • End Page

  • 261
  • Volume

  • 67
  • Issue

  • 5