- 0Mar 5, '13 by raianneI absolutely hated my first job as a new grad. Looking back, I can see that it was actually probably a good unit for me to learn on...floor with tele, lots of post-op patients, a very busy "get 'em in, fix 'em up, get 'em out" type of floor. I worked rotating days and nights. 5-6 patients on days, 6-7 patients on nights. I was stressed beyond belief, but I did it.
After 11 months on that floor, I got married and moved from PA to WV. Got a job on a cardiac stepdown unit. Nurse to patient ratio? 1:3. Maybe 4, sometimes, if we are short a nurse, which has happened once in 8 months. I love it. I love it so much. And I work straight nights. I went from being the most stressed out person ever and crying while driving home every day to coming home (most days) feeling like I actually am being the best nurse I can be. I never felt that way at my old job.
Here's my problem. My husband has a job offer in Texas. We may have to move there. I am terrified that I will get a new job and hate it. Since my two job experiences have been so vastly different, I have a hard time imagining any middle ground. I would like to have a job that I love as much as this one. Also, both of the hospitals I have worked at so far have been large and well-known...and if we move to Texas, we would be living in a small town that has a small hospital, which I've never experienced before. I'm just worried. Any advice?
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- 1Mar 5, '13 by uRNmywayStart researching now! Look up those hospitals, try to figure out reviews from employees, staff turnover rates. Start sending resumes out now too, because let's face it, with the current market, its not easy to find a nursing job. You have experience in sought after departments, so that will be helpful. But don't take any chances. Worst comes to worst, you get multiple offers and get to pick and choose, at which point the above mentioned research will be useful to you.
- 1Mar 5, '13 by Good Morning, GilYou are right. There usually is no middle ground. I also love my current unit, job in the ICU, but my first nursing job I did not have those "love my job" kind of feelings. However, I must say, like you, I learned a lot in my first nursing job of which I worked a year, and met some other great nurses of which I still keep in touch.
Anyway, a move can be very exciting. I moved to a new area, new state, and am loving the change. In this economy, it's usually best to go where jobs take you. Also, good news for you, TX needs nurses, I hear, and some areas pay very well. Research the hospital that is in your small town, look up their website to see how big it is, what it's like, look up reviews on things like citydata.com, etc. Call local places, like hotels, etc, and ask them really what they think about the hospital. Say you are considering working there, but want to know if it has a good reputation, have you had good experiences there? etc. Best to get info from local people. You can do this ahead of time, and if you move, you have done your leg work. And, if not, then, that really doesn't take that long to look up the info.
If it's a good hospital, then go for it. But always look for red flags as things vary from unit to unit. Start looking at what's posted now, and look for trends. Is there postings on one unit continually, or multiple postings on one unit? If so, avoid that unit if you can. However, just because one unit has postings regularly doesn't mean it's a bad place to work, just means that unit may have turn-over because that unit always has turn-over no matter the hospital. ICU's, ER's, telemetry, and ortho units have higher turn-over rates because these are the most difficult units to work on, generally speaking. ER is stressful, lots of patients, unpredictability, whereas ICU nurses tend to burn out over time due to the emotional nature of the job, dying patients, and acuity etc. And, telemetry generally has horrible patient ratios lol.
Anyway, best of luck to you! I have never been to TX, but would like to go some day. I have a few friends in TX, but haven't gotten to make the trip down there yet. If you find that hospital has a bad reputation, then look for other nursing jobs outside of the hospital or apply to another hospital. Let us know if you go! Relocation can be fun .
- 3Mar 5, '13 by GrnTeaI've loved jobs in small hospitals, and hated them. I've loved jobs in big academic centers and hated them. A lot of the time, you know, it sorta boils down to attitude. One reason you learned to love your second job was that you really learned a lot about it at your first.
Why not take that positive attitude along for the ride? "I have great experience, I'm excited to come here!" That's a very appealing attitude in an interviewee.
I hate seeing the word "terrified" here so much.
Really? Terrified? As in when you are in a dark theater and the lady in the white nightie is walking out in the graveyard and you're thinking, No, don't go there, and suddenly the guy sitting behind you grabs your shoulders and says, "Booga-booga-booga!" Terrified?
A little healthy anxiety is, well, healthy. Besides, didn't your grandma always tell you, "Don't borrow trouble"? Give over the terrified stuff and go get 'em!
(And never wear a white nightie after midnight in the graveyard...)