So, I had an internship this past summer that was truly amazing! I learned so much, especially being under the guidance of my preceptor, who firmly believed in me figuring stuff out (under her close supervision, of course).
I really appreciated everything she did, and near the end of the internship, we had finally come to understand each other.
Pity it took eight weeks to get there.
Considering my upcoming graduation and then new job, I have been contemplating the fact that I will soon be placed under a preceptor, this time someone I will work with on a regular basis. This makes me a little nervous. I mean, I did learn a lot about honest communication and explaining frustration, but my personality just didn't click with my preceptor's, and I felt bullied by her sometimes. I wish I could have had a chance to really sit down with her and talk about each other BEFORE the internship had officially started. Then maybe it could have worked out just a little bit better, with a better understanding of each other.
So, I was thinking...do jobs in certain hospitals let this happen? What I would love to do is have a meeting before the job started. A "get to know you" meeting. Like, I need a guide to this person. I want to know THEIR strengths and weaknesses, and I want to share mine with them upfront. I want to know their past experiences with new grads. What they expect me to do, etc.
Some might argue that you can do this during the work times. I beg to differ. Work is for work, other people are often around, and there is no mindset of "getting to know you." I am under their supervision, and that sometimes constrains what I feel I can say in a moment.
And THEN, it would be awesome if there was follow up into orientation. Like, perhaps separate meetings with a manager or something, where we can both discuss each other and progress, problems, concerns, etc. Have a mediator and someone looking out for the situation.
I don't know...does this already happen, and I just don't know about it? Am I totally off the wall here?
Feb 16, '11
I worked at a hospital that had you fill out a learner's assessment and you were matched to a preceptor who's style met your own.
Feb 16, '11
I like your ideas! I've never worked in hospitals, so not sure what the "norm" is. How about just being proactive and approaching your preceptor and saying "What would you think about sitting down so we can get to know each other's work and learning styles?" Or something along those lines....
Feb 16, '11
It totally depends on your unit. When I first started, I knew who my preceptor would be, and had worked with her before, so I knew we would be a good fit. We had bi-weekly meetings with the unit educator. But other's in my orientation group (on other units, I was the only new graduate hired for my unit) didn't know until the day they started who the would be working with, and were never given any feedback. So, moral of the story is that it's a good thing to ask about in an interview; how do they match people up with preceptors, what is the typical length of orientation, and how do they determine if your orientation is progressing as planned?
Feb 17, '11
I'm a unit educator and this is SO hard. I often get new grads who I haven't met before the first day of orientation. They want an orientation schedule ahead of time so they can plan their lives (I get that) but I then have to randomly assign them when if I knew something about their personality and their learning style I could make a better match. I have 7 new grads starting on Monday. Because of the large number I'm doing clinical instructor method for the first 2 weeks. I will be their preceptor, much the way a clinical instructor was for clinical, and they will work with a mix of nurses under my supervision. This way I will get to know them and then can assign preceptors after seeing them in action for a short period. I hope this works better but only time will tell.
Must Read Topics