Document Type




Format of Original

7 p.

Publication Date




Source Publication

Archives of Psychiatric Nursing

Source ISSN


Original Item ID

doi: 10.1016/j.apnu.2014.01.002


It is important to consider ways in which nurses can be protected from experiencing the effects of burnout. This study examined the relationships between leadership style of psychiatric nurse supervisors, work role autonomy, and psychological distress in relation to psychiatric nurse burnout. Eighty-nine psychiatric nurses from Montana and New York hospitals completed an online survey that assessed their work-related experiences. Overall, results of this study indicate that the participants were experiencing high levels of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization when compared to a normative sample of mental health workers. Results also showed that leadership style and work role autonomy are likely to be environmental factors that protect against burnout in nurses. Finally, it was shown that the relationship between depressive symptoms and the burnout component of personal accomplishment may be influenced by nurses’ perceptions of the leadership style in their work environment. These findings are important because nurse supervisor leadership styles and amount of autonomy are characteristics of the work environment that may be amenable to change through training and intervention.


Accepted version. Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, Vol. 28, No. 3 (June 2014): 160-166. DOI. © 2014 Elsevier. Used with permission.

Nicholas C. Heck was affiliated with The University of Montana at the time of publication.

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