back to Work with a Warning

  1. 0
    Hi all! This is a little bit of an update for my previous thread:

    http://allnurses.com/general-nursing...ed-435666.html

    So i finally went to the facility to get things started once again. Like I have said, i asked for a leave for at least 2 weeks, and then called to let them know that i am ready to work again. Things were not written in black and white when I left so i am not sure if that was "official." I just spoke to the administrator (as advised by the company President who knows my story as well), told him the reason why i needed a "break" and he did say OK with no other questions asked.

    I had been a diligent worker, though I agree we make mistakes once in a while, unfortunately one of them was caught and a huge issue revolved around it. Honestly, I do believe from the bottom of my heart that for the mere 6 months that I have worked there, I have done a lot better than the rest who had been there longer. This is not to brag, but I know who I am and my superiors tell me so... that i do have the potential of becoming a DON one day, that a lot of my patients rave so much about me, and that I obviously do a lot more than the rest, a lot of times not even getting paid for staying late, a lot of times not even getting a chance to have a break.

    I've had personal issues of my own, but as soon as I clock in I make sure that everything that don't belong to work I leave behind. I don't think about my problems to work. I step in the door with a cheerful smile, an alert mind, a fit body and a strong heart. Though nursing is not my first love, I still give it my best shot all the time. However, there are instances when I couldn't make it to work. It's either I don't feel like I am fit to work (sick, worried to death) or I don't have the means to get myself to the facility which is 28 miles from home (another story). Nobody gave me a heads up that I might need to keep an eye of my attendance (there would be times when I ask another nurse to switch sched with me, and they agree with supervisor's and DON's approval). It was only when I spoke to the administrator that I said that I'd like to take a leave because I am going through a lot and would not want to mess up the schedule and that I do not want to call in sick anymore. I was sincerely concerned about them.

    Anyway, long story short, I called and I was asked to meet with the administrator, the DON and the supervisor. I was told that 1 more call off and I'd be terminated. (Though I know this was coming, I was never given a verbal warning prior to this. Does this serve the verbal warning now?) That was so cold! Anyway, i told them I would do better with my attendance. But still, i am now left with that kind of fear, and as much as id like to start fresh, i have that kind of feeling that just one miss and i'd totally regret that i went back. please help!
    Last edit by the_alchemist on Nov 7, '09
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  4. 0
    I don't know where you live or what the laws are in your state, nor whether you belong to a union. If you're in a "right to work" state, you can be dismissed just like that. If you are represented by a union, you have a collective bargaining agreement which specifies the steps of discipline. I'm a union steward in a hospital in a "union" state, so as a public employee (which I am) I would be subjected to progressive discipline even if I weren't protected by a contract. This means that there would be verbal warning, followed by written warning, followed by a pay reduction for a 3 month period, and then pre-dismissal. However, if I were new (within my trial service period of six months or a year) none of this would apply. Similarly, if I did something really egregious, like came to work drunk and accidentally killed a patient, I could be dismissed on the spot and subject to criminal charges.

    Okay so, all that being said, I have to assume the period you were out of work was not a FMLA-covered absence. in order to qualify for FMLA you have to have worked at the facility for a certain length of time, and it depends upon hours. Generally six months isn't long enough.

    The details you've given are a little sketchy. What I would say is that you are being given a second chance but unless you have union representation, you may correctly interpret this verbal warning at face value. On the other hand, it is unrealistic to expect ANY employee to never be sick, or never have to care for a sick family member for the duration of their employment. So you need to talk to your administration and clarify the terms. If they want to place you on a probationary status, that's reasonable. But you have to pose the question, what if I am too sick to work? Do I even need to bother to call in sick? Is there a timeframe on this? Research your state family medical leave laws in addition to the federal law. Educate yourself about what is legal and what is not. If you find yourself terminated while in a family medical leave status, you have grounds to sue for discrimination. On the other hand, unless you get it in writing what the expectations are (I would insist) you will have nothing to show an attorney or your union or the EEOC if your employer decides to cut you loose down the road.



    Quote from the_alchemist
    Hi all! This is a little bit of an update for my previous thread:

    http://allnurses.com/general-nursing...ed-435666.html

    So i finally went to the facility to get things started once again. Like I have said, i asked for a leave for at least 2 weeks, and then called to let them know that i am ready to work again. Things were not written in black and white when I left so i am not sure if that was "official." I just spoke to the administrator (as advised by the company President who knows my story as well), told him the reason why i needed a "break" and he did say OK with no other questions asked.

    I had been a diligent worker, though I agree we make mistakes once in a while, unfortunately one of them was caught and a huge issue revolved around it. Honestly, I do believe from the bottom of my heart that for the mere 6 months that I have worked there, I have done a lot better than the rest who had been there longer. This is not to brag, but I know who I am and my superiors tell me so... that i do have the potential of becoming a DON one day, that a lot of my patients rave so much about me, and that I obviously do a lot more than the rest, a lot of times not even getting paid for staying late, a lot of times not even getting a chance to have a break.

    I've had personal issues of my own, but as soon as I clock in I make sure that everything that don't belong to work I leave behind. I don't think about my problems to work. I step in the door with a cheerful smile, an alert mind, a fit body and a strong heart. Though nursing is not my first love, I still give it my best shot all the time. However, there are instances when I couldn't make it to work. It's either I don't feel like I am fit to work (sick, worried to death) or I don't have the means to get myself to the facility which is 28 miles from home (another story). Nobody gave me a heads up that I might need to keep an eye of my attendance (there would be times when I ask another nurse to switch sched with me, and they agree with supervisor's and DON's approval). It was only when I spoke to the administrator that I said that I'd like to take a leave because I am going through a lot and would not want to mess up the schedule and that I do not want to call in sick anymore. I was sincerely concerned about them.

    Anyway, long story short, I called and I was asked to meet with the administrator, the DON and the supervisor. I was told that 1 more call off and I'd be terminated. (Though I know this was coming, I was never given a verbal warning prior to this. Does this serve the verbal warning now?) That was so cold! Anyway, i told them I would do better with my attendance. But still, i am now left with that kind of fear, and as much as id like to start fresh, i have that kind of feeling that just one miss and i'd totally regret that i went back. please help!
  5. 23
    However, there are instances when I couldn't make it to work. It's either I don't feel like I am fit to work (sick, worried to death) or I don't have the means to get myself to the facility which is 28 miles from home

    Honestly, your post sounds full of excuses. Sometimes you can't make it the 28 miles to work when scheduled? What??! Your employer has an absolute right to expect that you will attend work when scheduled, unless you apply through correct channels for leave according to their policies. You asked for 2 weeks off for a "break"? As the other poster said, get FML if it's an approved reason. Otherwise, deal with your personal life outside of work like everyone else does. It's not really your employer's or colleagues' problem to cover for you. Do you have documentation of the leave that was approved by the boss?

    Nobody gave me a heads up that I might need to keep an eye of my attendance

    You're an adult. No doubt you have access to your employer's policies. Who do you think should "give you a heads up"?

    I was sincerely concerned about them.
    You were sincerely concerned about yourself. If you were sincerely concerned about work, you wouldn't repeatedly left down your employer and coworkers with unscheduled absences.


    If you've only been there 6 months and made a serious med error AND you're often out, then you're lucky you still have a job at all. I would pull up my socks and go to work when I'm meant to be at work. Staying late without pay doesn't tend to get you brownie points - just do what is required of you when you're there, and then leave.

    If you have ongoing personal issues, get a part time job so you can deal with your issues on your own time.

    Sorry if this is harsh - but the attitude of some new staff these days just boggles my mind. There is NO WAY I would dare to act like this in a professional environment.
    ScrubMan0416, DogWmn, chare, and 20 others like this.
  6. 1
    Quote from ghillbert
    [/font]
    Honestly, your post sounds full of excuses. Sometimes you can't make it the 28 miles to work when scheduled? What??! Your employer has an absolute right to expect that you will attend work when scheduled, unless you apply through correct channels for leave according to their policies. You asked for 2 weeks off for a "break"? As the other poster said, get FML if it's an approved reason. Otherwise, deal with your personal life outside of work like everyone else does. It's not really your employer's or colleagues' problem to cover for you. Do you have documentation of the leave that was approved by the boss?


    You're an adult. No doubt you have access to your employer's policies. Who do you think should "give you a heads up"?
    [/font]

    You were sincerely concerned about yourself. If you were sincerely concerned about work, you wouldn't repeatedly left down your employer and coworkers with unscheduled absences.


    If you've only been there 6 months and made a serious med error AND you're often out, then you're lucky you still have a job at all. I would pull up my socks and go to work when I'm meant to be at work. Staying late without pay doesn't tend to get you brownie points - just do what is required of you when you're there, and then leave.

    If you have ongoing personal issues, get a part time job so you can deal with your issues on your own time.

    Sorry if this is harsh - but the attitude of some new staff these days just boggles my mind. There is NO WAY I would dare to act like this in a professional environment.
    I agree, many employees, not just certain age groups, tend to have this attitude.......
    rc72rn likes this.
  7. 4
    By allowing you to return to your job, they were being kind to you and are giving you a chance to get your act together. By giving you the warning, they are telling you upfront and in a no-nonsense way, that they will not tolerate any more attendance problems from you. One can't expect better from an employer. I would resolve your attendance issues with this employer before you move on to another employer, otherwise you will continue to have the same problems over and over and will develop a spotty work history because of them. You don't want to get a spotty work history in an economy where people with perfect work histories have problems finding work. Good luck.
    Scrubby, Otessa, canoehead, and 1 other like this.
  8. 0
    In any professional enviroment you normally sign that you understand company policy. I make it a point to know those policies for cases like this. Yes everyone does have to leave work sometimes, or call in. children get sick, you get sick, and sometimes its just not possible to come in, BUT it is your responsiblity as an employee to know your company policy. Have you thought of going to a PRN schedule, where if you can't work because of your personal life you don't have to.
  9. 9
    Quote from the_alchemist
    Honestly, I do believe from the bottom of my heart that for the mere 6 months that I have worked there, I have done a lot better than the rest who had been there longer. This is not to brag, but I know who I am and my superiors tell me so... that i do have the potential of becoming a DON one day, that a lot of my patients rave so much about me, and that I obviously do a lot more than the rest, a lot of times not even getting paid for staying late, a lot of times not even getting a chance to have a break.
    alchemist, i hate to be the one to break this to you, but you are expendable.
    my goodness, you could be the DON him/herself, but if your attendance is erratic, it is a terminable offense.

    i just don't understand why you are surprised by this??

    leslie
    ScrubMan0416, Scrubby, Otessa, and 6 others like this.
  10. 0
    Honestly, your post sounds full of excuses.

    Yes, it does sound so and I truly believe that I needed time to sort things out. I'd rather keep this private, but since I'd like to hear your advice, I did ask for a"time off" with the excuse of a "family emergency" -- truth is, there had been a police intervention on this matter and I was advised to find myself a safe place to stay and a means to come to work on time, and I couldn't do that if I was at work. It was a very difficult situation for me and I didn't expect any sympathy. Just pure consideration.

    You were sincerely concerned about yourself. If you were sincerely concerned about work, you wouldn't repeatedly left down your employer and coworkers with unscheduled absences.

    I knew that my decision could lead to these consequences. It was in good faith that I spoke to my boss and told him that I will be back as soon as I sort things out. I told him about my situation. I asked if there's any paperworks I need to take care of before I leave, he asked me to just call him when I am ready to work (and I did). I said that I was concerned about "them" because I thought it might help by letting them know that I'll be gone so they could fix the schedule, and not fix it only when I call off. I truly understand that it is not easy to look for someone to work for me on the spot. And they were able to do that as soon as they learned about my decision. And i dis specifically tell them when i am coming back.

    I am currently working 56hrs/2weeks.


    alchemist, i hate to be the one to break this to you, but you are expendable.
    my goodness, you could be the DON him/herself, but if your attendance is erratic, it is a terminable offense.


    I totally understand this comment. I can't agree more. And I appreciate that they "took me back" but also thinking... what if I didn't tell them that I was concerned about my absences, would they even notice? I felt like I put myself on the line by doing that.
  11. 1
    I notice that you're 27 - is this your first job? I ask because it seems possible from your post that you do not have a good understanding of the employer-employee relationship and the expectations that most employers have. For instance, "worried to death" is not an acceptable reason to call in. Nor is lack of transportation. In this climate of more nurses than available nursing jobs positions, someone who has a job needs to be on their toes to keep their position.

    I think that (1) you were extremely fortunate that your employer gave you the "break" that you requested (most wouldn't without invoking an official LOA or FMLA); (2) you were equally fortunate, after the employment history that your post implies, that they took you back; and (3) your statement that "i am now left with that kind of fear" may be what saves your job. A little bit of fear/anxiety can be a compelling influence for good and it seems that you now have a better understanding of what it means to be a full-time, responsible employee.
    Last edit by roser13 on Nov 7, '09
    tvccrn likes this.
  12. 0
    Quote from roser13
    I notice that you're 27 - is this your first job? I ask because it seems possible from your post that you do not have a good understanding of the employer-employee relationship and the expectations that most employers have. For instance, "worried to death" is not an acceptable reason to call in. Nor is lack of transportation. In this climate of more nurses than nursing jobs available, someone who has a job needs to be on their toes to keep their position.

    I think that (1) you were extremely fortunate that your employer gave you the "break" that you requested (most wouldn't); (2) you were equally fortunate, after the employment history that your post implies, that they took you back; and (3) your statement that "i am now left with that kind of fear" may be what saves your job. A little bit of fear/anxiety can be a compelling influence for good and it seems that you now have a better understanding of what it means to be a full-time, responsible employee.
    :yeahthat:


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