Does seniority = superiority

  1. We have 2 nurses on our floor who have been there 20-25 years. They are very smart and very experienced. However they are VERY lazy! They sit around and chat... talk on their cell phone and order the younger nurses around. I am still on orientation and one of them is often my preceptor. I leave work wanting to scream! She says quote "I love it when you are here, I get to sit around and drink coffee while you do all my work, he he." She doesn't mean it in a mean or hateful way....She just likes not having to do anything. I feel she should be along side me, teaching me and helping me. They don't chart everything they are supposed to, they don't take home meds to pharmacy, they don't chart on the pathways... ect ect. I am a new nurse.. I want to learn the correct way to do things. And I respect their seniority but I don't feel it is right for them to order us around while they sit on their butt....

    All the other nurses on the floor put up with this and run around doing their job for them... I like the women and they are smart but what should I do? Should I go along with this nonsense as well?
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   Kim O'Therapy
    Could you tell her you are still not as confident as you'd like to be; so you'd appreciate if she could help you out? I don't think that is unreasonable.
  4. by   TigerGalLE
    Well she'll answer my questions when I come too her... I just have to go find her in the break room first
  5. by   chuck1234
    post removed due to inflammatory nature.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Feb 14, '07 : Reason: inflammatory post
  6. by   jennyfyre
    I feel for you! I have a senior nurse (30 years) and another nurse that sit at the desk chatting or making busy work... don't get up to answer lights, or even pick up the ringing telephone in front of them. I have literally had to ask them to answer the phone when I am on 3 other lines at once. They both page MDs to my phone, so that I can answer it and transfer the call back to them. :icon_roll They act offended and overworked if I ask them to do something for a patient whose nurse is on break or off the floor for a moment. I'm the HUC, so I obviously can't give a patient a pain med, etc!
  7. by   piper_for_hire
    I think this has nothing to do with nursing, but general human behavior.. There is a certain kind of personality that can stay at the same job for 20-30 years.
  8. by   Silverdragon102
    All I can say is it is a shame that you are not getting the proper support that you need at the start of your career, shouldn't have to go and find them to answer questions
  9. by   joaha0826
    I don't think I would put up with this. There is a difference between delegating and dumping. I believe I would talk to my supervisor or the chief nursing officer and let my concerns about a lack of support and training be known. You are right to be concerned that you are not receiving the instruction you need, want, and deserve. Don't take this lying down. It sounds like someone needs to say something to light a fire under their butts and get them back on the right track.
  10. by   Soup Turtle
    I'm not a nurse, but this seems like pretty typical behavior, anywhere. I've sat around and let new people do "all the work". At least, it seems like "all the work" to the new person! Sometimes I've done twice as much as they have, but four times as fast.

    I probably wouldn't make much of an issue out of it as long as they're willing to help you when you need it. It could also be that those nurses handle things you aren't even aware of since you're still working on getting down the basics. If you are doing all the work, you're learning a LOT, so hang in there.
  11. by   OB_RN
    This is NOT how preceptors act at my hospital( or at least one floor on a sister hospital). My med surg preceptors were with me every step of the way ( and I was an LPN for 12 years before becoming an RN 6 years ago), as were my OB preceptors.

    You need to approach your Nurse Manager, and if you are not satisfied with the outcome of your conversation, either switch floors or switch Jobs!!!

    You need the mentoring that comes with a preceptor working along side of you!!! DONT short change yourself!!!
  12. by   CHATSDALE
    what you are learning now will be with you the rest of your career . you need some instructions, need to learn the 'tricks of the trade' and you need someone to pat you on the back when they see you blooming
  13. by   Cattitude
    it's unfortunate that you are being treated this way. i think you deserve a better preceptor. my concern is that if you go to your nurse manager, will there be repercussions? being that these two have been there so long, you know they must have a little "rank" on the floor. it's not fair and i don't know what else you can do.
    [color=#483d8b]
    [color=#483d8b]maybe as someone else said, if you're doing all the work, you're still learning a lot?
    [color=#483d8b]good luck.
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  14. by   PANurseRN1
    Quote from TigerGalLE
    We have 2 nurses on our floor who have been there 20-25 years. They are very smart and very experienced. However they are VERY lazy! They sit around and chat... talk on their cell phone and order the younger nurses around. I am still on orientation and one of them is often my preceptor. I leave work wanting to scream! She says quote "I love it when you are here, I get to sit around and drink coffee while you do all my work, he he." She doesn't mean it in a mean or hateful way....She just likes not having to do anything. I feel she should be along side me, teaching me and helping me. They don't chart everything they are supposed to, they don't take home meds to pharmacy, they don't chart on the pathways... ect ect. I am a new nurse.. I want to learn the correct way to do things. And I respect their seniority but I don't feel it is right for them to order us around while they sit on their butt....

    All the other nurses on the floor put up with this and run around doing their job for them... I like the women and they are smart but what should I do? Should I go along with this nonsense as well?
    There are plenty of new nurses who are like this too. This is not a problem related to age/experience, it's an individual problem. Please do not restart the anti-older nurse rants. We have enough of them already.

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