Beth Boynton, RN, MS

York Beach, ME, United States

About Beth


MS in Organization & Management-Antioch New England Graduate School-2003 BS in Biochemistry, Minor: Theatre and Communications, University of New Hampshire-1981 AD Nursing, New Hampshire Technical Institute-1986
2003-present: Nurse Consultant specializing effective communication, conflict management, teambuilding and leadership. Includes ‘Whole Systems’ assessment and intervention for teambuilding, facilitation, training and coaching. Workshops include:
␣ Inspiring the Nurse Within You ␣ The Art of Giving & Receiving Feedback ␣ Understanding and Improving Workplace Dynamics ␣ Developing & Practicing Listening Skills ␣ Developing & Practicing Assertiveness Skills ␣ Confident Voices: A Workshop for Empowering Nurses, (with Judy Ringer)
Fall-2005- present: Adjunct Faculty positions with Antioch University, New England College and McIntosh College. Courses involve face-to-face and online work and include:
␣ Organizational Leadership & Management ␣ Organizational Communications, Conflict & Negotiations ␣ Introduction to Medical Assisting ␣ Holistic Health for Massage Therapists ␣ Healthcare Practice and Issues ␣ Human Resource Issues in Healthcare.
1998-Fall 2006: Occupational Health Nurse for Thermo Electron Corporation, Newington, NH. Provided expertise re: employee relations, risk management and loss prevention, workers compensation, short and long-term disability, employee health, safety and ergonomic issues.
1993-2005: Various part-time and per diem Home Health Nurse for Portsmouth Home Health, Integra Home Health & Hospice and Homemakers of Strafford County. Primarily adult, acute and chronic care with significant experience in case management, admissions, discharges and recertification involving Medicare and Private Pay clients in York, Strafford and Rockingham Counties. Familiar with OASIS.
1999-2001: Clinical Coordinator for Living Innovations, Portsmouth, NH. Managed small nursing and CAN staff and helped to develop small home health agency primary serving private pay and NH Medicaid clients. Position included quality assurance, grantwriting, direct care, and recruitment and retention. Developed career ladder program for CNAs.
1996-1999: Utilization Review Nurse and Case Manager for Liberty Mutual. Telephonic nurse case management and utilization review for workers’ compensation cases nationwide, included liason with claims adjusters, physicians, allied health professionals, employer and employee.
␣ Author: Confident Voices: The Nurses’ Guide to Improving Communication & Creating Positive Workplaces, (scheduled for publication in June 2009).
␣ Faculty Presenter, Webinar, Conflict and Intimidation in Health Care Settings: How To Protect Patient Care and Defuse Hostile Behaviors, Dorland Health, December 2009.
␣ “Best Practices” presentation for ANA-Maine Nursing Summit on ‘Listening’ on 4/1/09
␣ Created online “Communication Challenges” via email newsletter that involves case study presentations of common issues that nurses face. Opportunities are available for feedback and expertise is shared with over 9000 nurses all over the US. As ov 10/31/09 four of these have been delivered.
␣ Publishes and writes for bimonthly newsletter: Confident Voices for Nurses: The Resource for Creating Positive Workplaces, since Summer 08, (Archives at
␣ Writes quarterly column for ANA-Maine on communication & conflict issues since Fall 08.
␣ Best practices provider at 2008 Maine Nursing Summit on ‘Using a Whole Systems Approach for Teambuilding on 03/06/08.
␣ Over twenty years practice as an RN in consultant, management or direct care positions. ␣ Over ten years as Nurse Consultant to business and industry for workers compensation
and employee health issues.
␣ 5 years as Legal Nurse Consultant for attorneys on cases regarding medical/nursing malpractice.
␣ Contributed best practices for teambuilding and listening in June Fabre, RN, MBA’s Smart Nursing—Nurse retention and patient safety improvement strategies, Second Edition
Practice Matters: How to Improve Your Listening Skills, American Nurse Today, November/December, 2009, Volume 4, Number 9, HealthCom Media.
No Innocent Bystanders: A Critical Building Block for Successful Good-Conduct Policies, Online Exclusive, Dorland Health, 10/02/2009, Health/no-innocent-bystanders.html
Confident Voices for Nurses: The Resource for Creating Positive Workplaces, bimonthly e- newsletter, self-published, ISBN: 1938:0550, originated May 2008.
Confident Voices, a quarterly column in Q & A format addressing workplace concerns re: communication and conflict, American Nurse Association-Maine Journal, originated: Winter 2008.
The Nurse Who Said, “NO”: Fairytale, Nightmare or Collaborative Opportunity?, Healthcare Review, Northeast

Areas of Expertise

communication, Executive Coaching, Consulting, and training, bullying prevention, Workplace Violence, Organizational Development and Change, Horizontal Violence

An idea worth spreading

I believe that respectful communication among healthcare professionals and positive workplace cultures in healthcare settings will decrease errors, increase safety, save money and help us to have more rewarding careers.

Workplace bullying is a huge problem among doctors and nurses. There is horizontal and vertical abuse as well as covert and overt abuse. Another term that is becoming popular is 'disruptive behavior'. There are some general differences between doctors and nurses, but research shows that over 95% have observed behavioral problems among professionals.

Intellectually, the changes we need to make are deceptively simple. Just speak up and listen respectfully. But these relationship and cultural changes require new behaviors and that is HARD. Time, $, senior leadership commitment & practice are all key.



We make terrible mistakes in healthcare despite our intention to help. I believe that if we become more effective communicators

I'm passionate about

Helping health care professionals become more effective communicators.
Communication failure is implicated in just about 100% of the mistakes we make in the US Costing lives, $$$ and burnout

Talk to me about

bullying in healthcare (nurse to nurse, doctor to nurse, nurse to doctor)
victim of medical error(s)

People don't know I'm good at

Engaging nurses in respectful and honest dialogue about REAL problems in healthcare. This is a critical step in changing behavior.

My TED story

I wrote a book called, Confident Voices: The Nurses' Guide to Improving Communication & Creating Positive Workplaces. I want to travel the US and maybe abroad to engage nurses in honest discussion about our work and help to create a stage for respectful conversations with each other and our peers.

There are 3 million nurses in the US and 12 million worldwide. We are smart and compassionate people with great potential to change healthcare for the better.

Comments & conversations

Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted over 1 year ago
Are the ethics of healthcare compatable with the ethics of business?
No! If business in the USA was ethical i.e. not so greedy, profit-making in healthcare would not be such a big problem. However, excessive fortune-making in healthcare is directly or indirectly involved in decision-making about providing care. A shameful state of affairs. From NY Times in June, 2013 some Healthcare CEO salaries and holdings in the millions for 2012: Richard Bracken, CEO of HCA-34.6 & 84.5 million, Leonard Schleifer, CEO of Regeneron, 30.0 and 666.1 million, Kent Thiry, CEO of DaVita, 26.8 and 66.3 million, David Pyott, CEO of Allergan, 19.4 and 108.0 millio, Miles White, CEO of Abbott, 19.0 and 143.2 million, Ian Reed, CEO of Pfizer, 18.5 and 48.1 million.
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted almost 2 years ago
Elizabeth Loftus: How reliable is your memory?
Fascinating talk and important information. As a communication, collaboration, and emotional intelligence specialist, it made me wonder more about the importance that input from others has on our realities. Validation and respectful listening seem to honor our very existence. Recognizing the power of this, perhaps can help us to be mindful of what we add. Also, the thing about telling your kids something false so they'll eat better is more disturbing from a trust standpoint than memory 'bit'. I'm not necessarily against it, but again, caution. Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted almost 3 years ago
Ben Goldacre: What doctors don't know about the drugs they prescribe
Sadly, not surprising. Another symptom of a money driven system where results that lead to profit are more likely to be published or receive any focus. Not only that, but it also seems self-serving in that physicians/healthcare leaders insist on 'evidenced based' practice on one hand and undermine it on the other. Hmmmmmmm I suspect this is true in terms of surgical, rehab, and any other research in healthcare. Thanks for getting the talk out in the open and I will share it as you suggest! Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted over 3 years ago
Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone?
I think she is right on! Human connections/relationships are fundamentally important to us, yet intimacy is scarey and requires work. On ourselves and in relationship. Technology isn't bad, but we need to be mindful of Sherry Turkle's message. Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted over 3 years ago
Brené Brown: Listening to shame
This is the most inspiring Ted Talk I've ever seen. the so key....and vulnerability a very human place to start. I vote for Brene Brown to win the Nobel Peace Prize b/c this is going to be how we get there. Beth
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted over 3 years ago
Scott Summit: Beautiful artificial limbs
You have to care about the person to make this work. And you obviously do. We can use your philosophy in healthcare. So often we standardize things that should not be standardized and don't standardize things that we could. I think caring is key. Awesome work!!! Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Beth Boynton, RN, MS
Posted over 3 years ago
Susan Cain: The power of introverts
Great talk and interesting insights. We need introverts! Rather than decreasing our focus on groups, I believe that there are ways to make groups safer and more welcoming for introverts. As a small group process consultant and introvert, I think the most creative groups will have introverts in them!!! Making sure there is a pause between people talking, encouraging ALL group members to offer feedback on topics, asking for everyone's input on what they need to be comfortable participating are some keys to doing this. I think assertiveness is so key to individual and social evolution and further that introverts and extroverts have different things to teach each other, (to feel more comfortable speaking up; to be more comfortable listening) and with a little guidance and perhaps expert facilitation, a small group of people can do amazing things. Beth Boynton, RN, MS