Dear Nursing Students/Orientees: A Love Note from the Preceptor from Hell - page 6
Warning: The following post is rife with brutal honesty and frustration. Read at your own risk. Memorandum from the desk of Your Friendly Neighborhood Sociopath~~ Dear Nursing... Read More
Dec 5, '12This is not an issue of getting it or not getting it. Some posters disagree with the approach. I think the OP is wonderful because he/she truly does have a new grads best intentions.
This is an interesting read. I love to read the responses, it goes to show that there are different strokes for different folks. I guess.
Dec 5, '12Quote from ThePrincessBrideYes, you can compare the two. Did so for a comparative paper when I was in school.Can't compare law enforcement to nursing.
Both professions see humanity at its worst at times.
Both professions make life or death decisions re situations they encounter.
Both professions are one sex-dominant.
GOOD cops vs BAD cops; GOOD nurses vs Bad nurses --- for all the reasons we can expound on.
Looked at educational preparation for entry to practice, career mobility & options, marital stability, drug & alcohol use, lifestyle impact. Considered historical origins, economic and sociological influences.
In a nutshell, VERY comparable.
But back to the original post, we all see that there are two very different approaches to preceptiing. Either very no-nonsense or more relaxed. And there are two very different approaches to article writing about them - either no-nonsense, like OP, or more relaxed and laid-back. It may be difficult to see beyond the no-nonsense style of OP that elicits a strong reader response.
Dec 5, '12I know plenty of people who would thrive with a preceptor like the OP, but I am definitely not one of them. I don't need skittles and rainbows and hugs, but I also don't need the cold and militant attitude. There is no one-size-fits-all best teaching style. Not everyone needs to be "broken down." That is just insane. I'm glad OP acknowledges that there is such a thing as a mismatch. It's a shame that some people don't think so. Nobody should ever be made to feel like ****, and something that would not make you feel that way might make the next person feel horrible. What's wrong with trying to be considerate of a personality difference by reigning in your attitude?
Dec 5, '12I have read the OP 3 times and I cannot see any ill will towards students in this post, unless some of the sentences are taken out of context. The OP did not say they would make anyone cry. In fact they said they would take the pt. load and let the student go to a private place to cry if needed. I interpret that as someone else may make you cry but don't give the offending person the satisfaction of seeing you cry, hence the do not cry.
I am there to learn, not socialize, so I don't care for the chit chat. I don't think that makes the OP a mean person, but then again I am not easily offended and I understand that there are introverts in nursing, myself included. I prefer to have deep conversations and to build my knowledge rather than talk about menial topics.
I have trained many people in other various jobs and I have found that you have to be assertive with people and instruct them on what needs to be done, at least in the beginning. Giving someone instruction, encouraging them to try new skills, or pushing them to be their best is not the same as being militant. I have trained in this fashion and no one has ever told me that I was ordering, bossy, or militant.
And last but not least the eyes and ears. If anyone has ever worked in an environment with a lot of people, particularly women, they should be well aware of all the gossip and watching that others will do out of curiosity. Word can spread fast in this type of environment and if something happens you can bet everyone working will know by the end of the shift.
Dec 5, '12I am not going to go into too much detail as to why they are not comparable. Nurses as a whole deal with the sick and defenseless. Its backbone is caring and advocating. Cops as a whole deal with criminals and delinquents and law enforcement's role is to enforce the law and punish those who break it. Nurses aren't dealing with murderers and other hard criminals in the same capacity as cops who are seen as disciplinaries. Cops HAVE to be hardasses or there would be no justice or organization in this chaotic world.
I could go on but the two are just not comparable for so many reasons and if you can't see it, then oh well.
Quote from amoLuciaYes, you can compare the two. Did so for a comparative paper when I was in school.Both professions see humanity at its worst at times.Both professions make life or death decisions re situations they encounter.Both professions are one sex-dominant.GOOD cops vs BAD cops; GOOD nurses vs Bad nurses --- for all the reasons we can expound on.Looked at educational preparation for entry to practice, career mobility & options, marital stability, drug & alcohol use, lifestyle impact. Considered historical origins, economic and sociological influences.In a nutshell, VERY comparable.But back to the original post, we all see that there are two very different approaches to preceptiing. Either very no-nonsense or more relaxed. And there are two very different approaches to article writing about them - either no-nonsense, like OP, or more relaxed and laid-back. It may be difficult to see beyond the no-nonsense style of OP that elicits a strong reader response.
Dec 5, '12Yes you can compare the two professions on many levels-the two are service industries-cops can be kind and compassionate, so can nurses, nurses can be military in their style and caregiving-authoritative and can change up on a dime for the safety of themselves, their peers, and the patient. Cops and nurses see people at their most stressed and vulnerable. The service provided may be different, you see the gun and the law enforcement-I see the shot and the standards. A lot of comparisons. And if you ever work in trauma, which I hope everyone has the chance to do, police and nurses have a lot to share. They serve and protect, so do nurses. If you can't see that, then you are someone narrow minded and literal in your view.
Dec 5, '12We used to joke, some of us that nursing school was like the army. I appreciated the kick butt instructors, and even more so after I became a nurse. Sometimes they were brutal. However, I know that my "pass with distinction" from clinicals MEANT something, as does my degree. They are doing no favours by sugar coating. Students need to be prepared for the realities they will face. Great article!
Dec 5, '12Nurses are such a diverse group. There are tons of nurses who become nurses later in life and plenty of 2nd or 3rd career nurses who have been successful in their professional and personal lives before nursing.
When I read the original post....it sounds like it's directed at a 20 year old kid who those kind of antics might work with.
However, if that kind of "breaking down" had been attempted on me or the majority of my classmates, I'm sure the preceptor would've been in for a surprise.
Little kid games don't work on grown ups.
Dec 5, '12I'm a second career nurse. Still appreciate the post. Even second career nurses still need to learn the world of nursing.
Dec 5, '12Thanks for posting, MusicalCoffee. I'm a new nurse in orientation myself, and first thought that being more emotionally sensitive is a weakness. In actuality, it can be a great strength if you know how to avoid taking certain things personally. This is challenging at times, but having a strong preceptor makes all the difference. One like SweetPotato can teach you this.
My only recommendation to SweetPotato is to keep this mind, that some people have a more sensitive nature. Not because they are weak, but because it's just part of who they are. I believe you touched on this a bit in your article. And please, no arguments about how perhaps these people are not cut out for nursing, because I know that I can be a great nurse!
Dec 5, '12Quote from joanna73I'm a second career nurse. Still appreciate the post. Even second career nurses still need to learn the world of nursing.
Of course every new nurse needs to learn the "world of nursing."
However, most older nurses who often have more life experience than many preceptors don't need to be taught how to handle their emotions, or what your non-verbal cues mean, or be told that "no question is a stupid question."
They generally just need you to do your job so that they can watch and learn the requirements/routine of the job vs. being praised for "putting the bed low" or learning what their preceptor's tone of voice really means. They definitely don't need to be told that real life is not like a text book.
It just seems a little juvenile so I assume those are the antics that work with people less experienced at life and work in general vs. the world of nursing.
Dec 5, '12Wow....didn't expect to see this thread still alive with active dialogue. Interesting.
So many great thoughts and responses. I appreciate each and every one of them.
You know, on the topic of those that are second career nurses, would it strike you all as strange to know that some of the folks that have the hardest time adjusting to the idea that nursing is not the glorified field they thought it was were second career nurses?
I would never have suspected something like that to be the case, but ::shrugs:: these are things I have seen and even experienced as a second career nurse, myself. Former Candy Stripper. Oh yeah. I went there.
Other thoughts about modifying the manner of precepting are very valid and absolutely should be practiced. No preceptor worth their salt tries to do things the same way every time with every new individual that orients with them. Such a thing would be foolishness. There is no one size fits all. Take it from the girl that firmly believes such sizing tags lie to your face and are the mark of the devil.
But just as those labeled articles of clothing, one can only stretch so much within their own personality and style. As I stated in my second reply, if a mismatch occurs (and it does), a proper fit must be found.
Incidentally, one can be both congenial and direct. I find it fascinating that a direct approach is immediately associated with various feelings which conjure, to my addled mind, images of combat boots and riding crops.
Thank you, again, all for your various vehement replies and thoughts. Lovely, yummy things which will keep my brain busy on this night rotation. Ick.
Have a safe night and a fine tomorrow.
~~CP~~Last edit by CheesePotato on Dec 5, '12 : Reason: So...this is the second time my space bar has gone AWOL...turns out there was a hunk of Pringle wedged beneath it. So yeah..