Problems with co-workers

  1. I work in a rural hospital (post partum unit) where it seems that EVERYBODY talks about EVERYBODY. Is anybody else really bothered about stuff like that? It seems that these people spend more time gossiping about one another than taking care of patients, and I find myself picking up the slack while the "experienced" nurses are sitting around.

    Like today, I'm still technically on orientation, and the nurse I was working with assigned me 4 patients that required a LOT of care (and 4 isn't bad) but she only had 2 that required very little care. I understand I'm on orientation and I'm supposed to be gaining experience and all that, but I think that the work load could have been a little more evenly distributed, don't 'ya think? Then, she spent like all of her time back in L&D helping out the nurse back there (one of her good buddies) so I wound up taking care of her patients AND mine -- 2 of which were fresh vag deliveries that required frequent checks.

    I mean, come on! I'm new, but that doesn't mean I'm there to do everybody else's work! I usually don't get my break or dinner break and I'm usually there for at least a half hour after my shift ends, catching up on paperwork. (And it's NOT poor time management...I'm working the entire time.)

    Anybody else dealing with stuff like this?
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  2. 21 Comments

  3. by   huggietoes
    I have seen this during my orientation, it seems to occur more frequently on units. They seem like they attempt to test the new nurse or drive the new person out of the group. Just stand your ground, I would bring it up at a staff meeting or to whomever is in charge. Personally, because I am new and eager to learn and prove myself I ask for the heavy slot. As far as cutting one another to pieces, I think it is just the stress of working with one another day after day, half the time I do not believe that they mean any disrespect to the people they are talking about, but instead just venting. I find difusing the situation works best, such as when they begin speaking badly about a member or the staff I always say something like, well she/he has always been very nice or helpful to me. Once they see that you are not going to participate in the 'dirty politics' of the floor they will stop gossiping around you. Good Luck!
  4. by   shay
    Good God, Walmart........do you work at my old hospital??!!??:chuckle

    Yes, yes, yes.....I have been subjected to working in a 'henhouse' as well. I call it a henhouse....a bunch of old hens just sittin' around cluckin' all day long. They b*tched and moaned ENDLESSLY about everyone and everything. And work? WHAT'S THAT?? THEY certainly didn't engage in any WORK.

    The way I coped, quite frankly, was to simply ignore them. Really. I'm sure they talked trash about me because I didn't engage in their clucking with them, but WHO CARES?? Wugh. I would just go on my merry way and hang out with my patients and be as cheerful as possible (if I truly felt good.....no faking). Docs and co-workers often commented on how it was so nice to have someone so happy working for a change. HAH!!!

    Anyway, working in a henhouse sucks, yes. I have definitely been there done that. If you like the floor where you work and enjoy the patients you take care of, just ignore the hens. They're gossipy old farts who just have no lives, so they have to talk about everyone else around them.

    As for the assignment thing, well, if you honestly feel like you're getting dumped on, speak up. But not to a hen. Speaking up to a hen will do no good. Of course, if you DO speak up, you will be the subject of much clucking, but DO YOU REALLY CARE?? :chuckle

    Just go on with your day, and don't worry about the hens. Learn to look upon them with extreme pity for the pathetic losers they really are!!! And give 'em something GOOD to talk about! :chuckle
  5. by   ADN 2002
    Personally, because I am new and eager to learn and prove myself I ask for the heavy slot.
    Don't get me wrong...I'm not afraid to do my fair share of work, but it aggravates me that while I'm up taking care of my patients AND hers, she's hanging around in L&D instead of being out on the floor where she's supposed to be.

  6. by   meownsmile
    I know exactly how you feel. I have been on orientation and have found myself running myself ragged while everyone else sits around and "chats". Have gone without lunch 3 times in the last week i think. Is'nt it ironic that my surgicals all come back at lunch, or my new admits get to the floor and bottom out their blood sugar right at noon? Well sorry but it isnt that i dont have any organization when i have 8 patients and the others have 4 and 5. I got the new admissions, new surgicals, whatever and found i couldnt run fast enough. If the goal is to push me off the floor to another unit,, fine but then who's going to do the work?

    We'll see what happens when i go off orientation.
  7. by   Mkue
    i can probably pick the future chatters gossipers out now in nursing school.. there are some students who just complain about every little thing..

  8. by   meownsmile
    I hope im not reading more into mkue's comment than is there.
    Frankly, i use the word "chat" because in the 8 years i have been a LPN i havent let myself be drawn into the discussions and meeting of the minds at the nurses desk. And i doubt that i will now as a RN.
    The management ideology at my hospital is if people have time to sit and "chat" they have to much help on the floor. So why set yourself up to be shortstaffed, at least offer help to others when you are caught up. I think that is the main point of this thread anyway. In short, there is no reason people need to sit and watch as a orientee runs their butt off, get up and see if they need some help. The pay your dues mentality just doesnt hold water anymore.
    I have also found that you get more co-operation if people respect you for not being one that sits and critiques others and repeats what they are told.
  9. by   ADN 2002
    Originally posted by meownsmile

    The management ideology at my hospital is if people have time to sit and "chat" they have to much help on the floor. So why set yourself up to be shortstaffed, at least offer help to others when you are caught up. I think that is the main point of this thread anyway. In short, there is no reason people need to sit and watch as a orientee runs their butt off, get up and see if they need some help. The pay your dues mentality just doesnt hold water anymore.
    I couldn't have said it better. I swear, if I get told "well, we all paid OUR dues in orientation..." anymore, I'll scream!
  10. by   rachel h
    Oh, good ol' gossip.... that is why after I graduated nursing school I quit the hospital I had worked at for three years and started fresh. I got a job at the county hospital, right in the heart of downtown. The people and the patients are much different here- more down to earth, I think. I think it makes a difference if you work for a private hospital or not. The best thing to do is don't even partake, even the tiniest bit in their gossip. Just zip it! I made the mistake of getting sucked into the gossip at my old job and it just made everything miserable. The best thing to do is say nothing at all, just do the best you can and don't worry about doing anyone else's work.
  11. by   shay
    originally posted by mkue
    i can probably pick the future chatters gossipers out now in nursing school.. there are some students who just complain about every little thing..

    and i bet ya wanna just smack 'em upside the head!! :chuckle bleah!!

    rachel, you said it girl. staying out of it in the first place is the way to go.

    silly hens and their clucking. :chuckle
  12. by   Neon8
    I despise backbiting - always have. It is so distructive. When I hear someone doing it about someone else, I know that they will be doing it to me too. Then I can not ever trust them. Don't they know that this is what happens? I encountered the good old girls club during my externship. What misery - walking into the nurse's station knowing they have been talking about you.
  13. by   Fgr8Out
    I completely agree that co workers who sit around "BSing" all day need to reasses their priorities. It's ironic, because these are the very people who drive the rest of us CRAZY by their inactivity... yet amazingly, THEY don't see it that way at all.

    As for your assignment.... Precepting/Orienting is very different from general nursing. The Preceptor is responsible for proper orientation of a new nurse. Assignments are not made with regard to the total available nurses... the nurse and nurse being oriented are considered as one nurse. And yes, you will be expected by the end of your orientation to take over the care of the entire assignment, with the nurse orienting you observing and intervening as necessary.

    This does not mean, however, that your Preceptor should be off chewing the fat with others or leaving you to flounder.... She should be available to you as a resource for questions, troubleshooting and as a role model for appropriate behavior. Occasionally, she may leave you to assist another nurse or answer a light... but she should certainly make you aware of her reasons for doing so.

    Learn from this experience and take care not to repeat the mistakes you may encounter along the way. Best of luck to you in your career.

    Peace
  14. by   fab4fan
    I can think of a good reason why she might have given you 4 pts and taken 2 for herself...you need to get experience handling a full pt load.

    When you have the experience as a regular staff member, that might be one thing, but you are in learning mode. It might not have been right for her to leave her pt assignments for you to cover, but I see nothing wrong in the original assignment.

    I just had a new nurse do this to me; she outright refused to take another pt (she had one, this would have made two!!).

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