Research Problem: To determine the various values that influence nurses within the hospital, and ascertain, through comparison, any significant differences between the values of the floor nurse and the values of the emergency room nurse.
Method: The value systems (Tribalistic, Egocentric, Conformist, Manipulative, Sociocentric, and Existential) were developed by Clare W. Graves as the “Levels of Psychological Existence.” A values test was utilized in order to collect data. The “Values for Nursing” test was administered to 161 nurses in a large metropolitan city in Texas. The specific hypotheses were tested via an analysis of variance.
Results: No significant data was discovered to support the view that emergency room nurses and floor nurses differ with regard to their values in nursing. The younger the nurse, the higher her egocentric score; the older the nurse, the lower her level of egocentricism. The male nurses exhibited significantly higher scores at the tribalistic value level. The male nurses tended to display lower levels of egocentrism and higher levels of conformity and existentialism. The female nurses maintained a higher manipulative score. Sociocentrism remains high in both groups. In the areas of egocentrism and manipulation, the single nurses maintained the highest scores, while the widowed nurses held the lowest scores at these levels. The registered nurses displayed significantly higher manipulative vale levels and maintained lower levels of egocentrism than either the licensed vocational nurses or the practical nurses. Both LVN’s and the PN’s maintained higher levels of sociocentrism than the RN’s. The data indicated that there were no significant differences among staff nurses, charge nurses and head nurses at any level, however, the scores do indicate a move away from tribalistic values as leadership responsibilities increase. The data indicated a significant difference at the manipulative level between nurses who had received their training from a four- year college and nurses who had graduated from a diploma school for nursing. The college graduates demonstrated higher manipulative value levels than the diploma school nurses, while the associate degree nurses maintained a level between the two. The data also indicated the higher the level of education, the higher the level of egocentrism and the lower the level of conformity. The data suggested that as the nurse gains years of experience, the level of tribalism decreases. The nurses with the most years of experience also displayed the lowest levels of egocentrism.
Conclusion: Value System Analysis offers the means by which a hospital can learn the basic human psychic needs and reactions of its nurses, as well as the needs of the citizens of the community in which the hospital serves. Within the hospital environment every human situation exists, and the nursing supervisor must be aware and understand these different human situations. Value System Analysis could be used in the initial selection, placement, and management of nurses. Administrative communications could be written in such a way that they would communicate more effectively to all six value levels, not just the conformist or sociocentric.