Why Do I Care? - page 8

by Ruby Vee

17,283 Views | 109 Comments

Why do I care that new nurses leave our unit after less than two years -- often after less than one year? Why do I care, when they're adults. They're going to have to live with the consequences of being out of work, or having a... Read More


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    Can somebody please explain what is so contemptible about wanting a well paid job? I see so many posts lamenting "They are only in it for the moneeeeeey". Is it so unreasonable to expect decent remuneration?
    nae312213, NurseNightOwl, Fiona59, and 4 others like this.
  2. 4
    Quote from kungpoopanda
    Can somebody please explain what is so contemptible about wanting a well paid job? I see so many posts lamenting "They are only in it for the moneeeeeey". Is it so unreasonable to expect decent remuneration?
    It is the fact they want money WITHOUT the work; everybody knows that we are NOT in this business for free.
  3. 1
    Quote from christina891
    As a New Grad seeking employment for almost 9 months now, I couldn't imagine turning down ANY kind of opportunity like that regardless of the circumstances, where I live it is beyond tough to find a job. I will be so grateful when I get an opportunity like that, I could definitely understand where your frustrations are coming from!

    If you have been searching for a nursing position for 9 months then something is wrong. There are thousands and thousands of nursing positions needed to be filled across the country. If you really want a job in nursing you need to go out and get it or have someone look at your resume.
    canoehead likes this.
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    Quote from KCCO RN
    If you have been searching for a nursing position for 9 months then something is wrong. There are thousands and thousands of nursing positions needed to be filled across the country. If you really want a job in nursing you need to go out and get it or have someone look at your resume.
    I think it really depends on your location.

    Nursing jobs are pretty easy to find in my neck of the woods, but I hear states like California this isn't the case.
    Rose_Queen, xoemmylouox, Emergent, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from Ruby Vee
    Other than for the writer's initial shock at the concept, I don't think the article was disdainful of hiring for attitude, training for skill. I'll have to go back and read the whole thread.
    RubyVee, I did go back to read TheCommuter's Hard and Soft Skills article and I think you are correct-her initial reaction to the concept was surprise, but she seems to have agreed with it after hearing him out. But the crux of the matter is this:

    Quote from TheCommuter
    ..employees can be trained to perform the hard skills, but the soft skills come from within. For instance, an organization can easily teach someone to apply a wound vac machine, but they cannot train this same nurse to have empathy for others, communicate effectively, or change the selfish personality that she has displayed since middle childhood.

    Soft skills are important enough to make or break a person's career because, although a pleasant person can thrive in the workplace without a high intelligence level, a very intelligent individual with hard skills will struggle in his or her professional life without polished soft skills.
    That is not saying, either, that every nurse is going to thrive in the ICU or another high-tech environment, or that every nurse's skill set is the same. (I like to say that nursing is big enough for all of us, at least interest- and skill-wise). What it is saying, though, is that the hard skills/tasks are taught in nursing school and then polished and added to on the job, in whatever setting the nurse is hired.
    Quote from TheCommuter
    Soft skills are comprised of the personality traits, positivity, cordiality, work ethic, dependability, workplace etiquette, behavioral competence, emotional intelligence, reliability, communication style, personal habits, optimistic attitude, interaction, and unspoken social graces that come together to render someone a desirable employee.
    I can't agree with this more. Bad attitudes are far more contagious than good ones. A once-good workplace that becomes toxic is difficult to turn around again.
    barbyann and Emergent like this.
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    Where I live it is not unusual for new grads to be looking for jobs for months up to or over a year. Most facilities around this area will no hire new grads. Period. Relocating, as some have pointed out, is not always an option.

    As far as nurses leaving jobs w/in a short period of time, again, I can only reference the area where I live but most nurses end up leaving because what they were promised/agreed to (certain shift, pay, whatever) often ends up being changed. That is the #1 complaint I hear and why many resign or end up quitting. Right or wrong, not everyone who became a nurse was "born" to be one or is willing to put nursing before anything else in their lives - I like nursing, have been in it a long time, have my BSN and an MS and enjoy working BUT work will never be #1 for me - it's a part of my life but not my life. I would rather live modestly then spend endless hours at work, rarely seeing my family or being able to enjoy life a little. For me, life is too short to dedicate myself to an employer above all else. I don't begrudge those that do - it's their choice - but don't judge me if I don't feel the same.
    Nurses also leave because they realize their dream of working ER, ICU, med/surg whatever is a lot different in reality than the fantasy they had or what they experienced when in nursing school. It's better nurse realize he/she is in over his/her head or simply knows the flavor of nursing they are in is not for them and move onto something that is more along their interest lines and free up a position for someone else. I work in home health..someone I work with recently (last 6 months) came on board. This nurse worked for the previous 11 yrs in a doctors office..she is overwhelmed and extremely stressed out by home health, the charting system, ever changing schedule, and more. Do I think she will last? No. It's not because she is a lousy, job hopping nurse, it's because this area of nursing doesn't fit w/her needs/personality/abilities..she was mislead by a few people early on that home health is easy and your days are short, you are kept close to your home as far as traveling, no weekends, no call.. she has learned its the opposite of all that.
    I don't know what the answer is but I know that if she decides to leave, even though I spent some time training her, I won't take it personal or wish her ill will. People leaving jobs - even after short periods of time - is the norm now - like it or not.
    4boysmama, xoemmylouox, SHGR, and 5 others like this.
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    If particular organizations or particular units cannot keep nurses, management should examine the situation (truly anonymous surveys) and implement a retention plan (internal growth opportunities, better pay, better retirement options, better access to equipment/supplies, better scheduling, better staffing, better training).

    I think it is unwise for any nurse, new grad, or not, to stay put when there are better situations to be had. By leaving my first two employers after less than a year each, I settled into a good situation where I have stayed put. Each time, I increased my salary (the last move increased it over 25 percent), benefits, and work environment (support, supplies, ethics).

    I left unsafe places that poorly staffed, lacked supplies, and also pushed nurses to do unethical behavior (e.g., work off the clock, write physician orders without disturbing the physician), etc. I was shocked to see how many nurses at my first two work places found the situations acceptable.

    I don't think high turnover can just be blamed on a "lazy" generation of nurses, etc.

    I also found it interesting to learn (from this board) that the original Baylor plan was for two 12s - Sat and Sun - to be paid as full-time. I don't think - with the current economy - that we will see that any time soon, but I do think that nurses, by voting with their feet, can cause employers to rethink how they might increase retention.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and mclennan like this.
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    Wow, I would love a Baylor plan at my job. The closest thing I have is plain weekend status, 3 days a week. Which is full time, but oh to just work 2 12 hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday and still be considered full time, would be awesome.
  9. 1
    Quote from llg
    Many of you have missed a key point in Ruby's series of posts. You are wrongly assuming that people are leaving her unit because of poor orientation, poor morale, bullying, etc. Her point is that an increasing percentage of new nurses have no intention of staying longer than a year or two no matter how wonderfully they are treated. A morale committee, etc. cannot solve that problem.

    As someone who works with a lot of senior level nursing students and with hospital orientations ... I am seeing the same phenomena. The career plans of many new nurses involves "1 year at this first job ... then move on." That is causing a huge problem for the best hospitals/units who try to provide the support needed by new nurses. We don't have the resources to keep providing that much support to a constant flow of new folks. And that causes hardship to all involved and compromises the quality of patient care along with compromising the quality of the work experience.

    That is why you see hospitals not hiring as many new grads as they used to. Is that what we want? Another possible solution is also being tried -- internships that pay extremely low rates to new grads until they are off orientation and pulling more of their own weight. Is that the solution we want to see? We need to discuss these things because they are the types of solutions that administrators have at their proposal. Higher pay, better schedules, easier work loads, will not solve this problem -- because. as Ruby is saying, those are not the reasons many people are leaving! (Sure, there are some terrible places to work and some people leave because of bullying, etc. ... but those are not the people we are talking about!)
    I disagree with you that things such as higher pay, better schedules, and safe staffing will not help motivate people to stay. (I do also think that other things are important, like internal growth opportunities, regular and substantial pay increases, health benefits, retirement options, good IT and communications systems, good provider/nurse relations, etc., are important).

    ICUs are stepping stones for many to other career options, like CRNA, etc. Why shouldn't management accept this and help "grow" the employees so they meet their objectives? I also had thought that CRNA schools require a certain number of years in the ICU as a prerequisite. Wouldn't it be great to help these folks meet their goals? Such folks (who would actually be successful) work hard and would surely be an asset to the unit while there.

    On the other hand, if there are folks who are too lazy to do things like clean up poop, these folks really aren't much use. Hopefully, more careful screening during interviews can help weed them out.
    Not_A_Hat_Person likes this.
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    Quote from kungpoopanda
    Can somebody please explain what is so contemptible about wanting a well paid job? I see so many posts lamenting "They are only in it for the moneeeeeey". Is it so unreasonable to expect decent remuneration?
    Nothing wrong with wanting a well paid job. But in my opinion it's reasonable to expect professionalism at work, which includes not coming in telling all of us you became a nurse for "job security." I could be wrong though.
    Fiona59 and LadyFree28 like this.


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