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The relationship between organizational climate, personality and performance of nursing staff and patient outcomes on long-term care units

Linda E Moore, University of Massachusetts Amherst


The purpose of the study is to present a different perspective from which to evaluate two patient outcomes--infection and pressure ulcer. Past research has looked at the relationship of various medical treatments and/or nursing interventions to these outcomes. This descriptive exploratory study uses a cross-sectional design to investigate the variables being studied. In this study personality type and the performance of nursing staff and the organizational climate on long term care wards is examined in relationship to patient outcomes (infection and pressure ulcer rates). A questionnaire was completed by two hundred and seventy-six nursing employees who worked on 25 long term care wards at three medical centers. The Myers Briggs Type Inventory was used to measure personality. The Ward Environment Scale was used to measure organizational climate. Of the sixteen possible personality types, four types occurred with the greatest frequency. Collectively, these four types accounted for 60% of the staff participating in this study. Of the four bipolar personality dimensions, only extroversion/introversion had a significant effect on patient outcomes. Two of the organizational climate subscales were significantly related to patient outcomes--peer cohesion and task orientation. Six organizational climate dimensions were significantly related to performance ratings. Several organizational climate dimensions were also related to personality. Surprisingly, although both personality and organization climate related to performance and patient outcomes, no significant correlations were identified between staff performance ratings and patient outcomes. This raises several questions about the relationship between staff performance and patient outcomes for future studies. This study supports the belief that organizational climate influences the work site and is a factor worthy of management's attention. Implications for nursing management and nursing are discussed, Several recommendations for future research are offered including longitudinal studies to identify the effects of organizational climate and personality on and patient outcomes over time. The use of personality types to enhance team building and communications, and reduce turnover rates among nurses is also discussed.

Subject Area

Health care|Nursing|Occupational psychology

Recommended Citation

Moore, Linda E, "The relationship between organizational climate, personality and performance of nursing staff and patient outcomes on long-term care units" (1997). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI9809374.