Personality traits, staff attitudes and their association with absenteeism and presenteeism in public sector hospital nurses in Hobart, Tasmania

Mr Colin Banks1, Dr Sue Pearson2

1THS-S, Hobart, AU, 2UTAS, Hobart, AU


Absenteeism and presenteeism in the healthcare environment has been shown to have significant negative impacts on individuals, departments and organisations. As the largest professional group within healthcare settings, the negative impacts in nursing include poor work performance, decreased perceptions of own health, poorer patient safety, reduced or no productivity and a significant economic burden.

Predisposing factors linked to both attendance dynamics include the individual’s physical and mental health status, workplace culture, work characteristics such as job security, work overload, social factors, individual and team attitudes, workplace policies, age and gender. Individual nurse’s personality traits and attitudes may also have an impact on absenteeism and presenteeism.

Thus the aim of my study was to examine the association between individual personality traits (using the five-factor model) and attitudes to absenteeism and presenteeism in public sector nurses in southern Tasmania. I will present the findings of my Masters thesis, discuss the implications for nursing practice and opportunities for future research.


Colin Banks. Acting EDON THS-South.

I trained in the UK and have been a Registered Nurse for 22 years mainly specialising in Renal Dialysis. For the past 10 years I have worked in nursing management roles, firstly as Nurse Unit Manager, ADON and currently as the Acting EDON for THS-S. I completed my Master of Management and Leadership in 2018.

Hobart has been home for the past 15 years so I’m probably as close to being a local as I’ll ever be. I live here with my wife and young family.