from student to shift supervisor???

  1. I have a meeting in a couple of weeks to talk with my DON. I finish my ADN program next month and have been asked to seriously consider taking on the 3-11 shift supervisor position. We have a broad range of cares - skilled, intermediate, an alzheimer's unit and a residential care (assisted living) level....approx. 140 residents - plus 100+ residents who live in totally independent units but will call for nursing assessment/assistance in an emergency.

    I've only worked in nursing since I started my nursing program. One year as a CNA and then the last 9 months as a part-time LPN. I was the social worker here before. I have almost 10 years in so I know the facility, the residents.

    BUT.........am I ready to be a supervisor with so little clinical experience? I told my DON that I want to discuss the expectations of the postition. I have concerns that the other nurses will accept me in that position.

    What should I be thinking about as I prepare for this meeting with my DON? We've worked together the last 9+ years, I think we like and respect each other so my expectation is that she'll be honest with me.

    Any words of experience for me to consider?

    Or should I politely thank them for the offer and walk away as fast as my short legs will take me?
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   nekhismom
    WOW. I would be scared to death as a new grad to supervise. BUt, you have a lot more experience than I do. You know the residents, so I'm guessing that you probably have a good idea of things that you need a supervisor to do already. Maybe you should ask to "shadow" a supervisor one shift so that you can get a more realisitic view of what might be expected of you.

    Sorry, I can't give a definate yes or no answer to this one. But good luck, whatever you decide!
  4. by   jkaee
    When I first read the title to your thread, I thought "No Way", but then I read on and saw that you have been working as an LPN for about 9 months, so you do have some nursing experience under your belt. Plus, you have had a lot of patient contact for the past 9+ years, so you've probably gotten a feel for when a resident is "off". (as you know, our geriatric population doesn't always present with the classic signs and symptoms!) So, I don't think that it's something that you shouldn't consider at all.....but you are right to worry about how the staff will handle a "new grad" taking on a supervisory role. I've been there before, and it wasn't always a pleasant experience.

    When you talk to the DON at your meeting, see if you can work the floor for about 6-9 months first, just to get used to acting independently as an RN, because there is so much to learn and remember. If not, then ask about working the majority of the pay period as a floor nurse and just be the "relief supervisor" on the other days....like 3 days a week floor and 2 super. That way, you can learn the ropes while not having to take on the full responsibility that a full time supervisor would (ie: scheduling, staff issues, audits, reports, committees, etc.)

    I would be hesistant on taking on that kind of responsibility right out of nursing school, esp. considering the diverse population type you have at your facility. See if any other options are available, and work into a supervisor role slowly at your own pace.

    Good luck to you!

    Jennifer
  5. by   Shed13911
    I too would be very reluctant to go from school straight into a supervising position. Even with some prior experience, that is a difficuly position. I think I would also wonder why they are asking you to do this as a new graduate to take this position, is it because no one else wants it? I think you would be better prepared after getting a few months of experience as an RN. Good luck in what ever you choose to do! Congratulations on your impending graduation.!!
  6. by   IowaCindy
    I have some deep thinking to do and questions to prepare before that meeting.
  7. by   FrazzledRN
    Quote from IowaCindy
    I have some deep thinking to do and questions to prepare before that meeting.
    In our facility all RN's are "charge nurse supervisors", so if you are employed there as an RN (on the floor) you ARE the charge/supervisor for your shift with your LPN's, and STNA's. So if this is the case in your building you probably won't have an option of "working the floor" first. Just a thought, or ask for an extended orientation until you feel comfortable in the role. Chances are that you will do just fine with your past experience and years at the facility. Maybe begin on a daylight shift if possible where there is administrative back-up to help until you get your feet wet. Just a thought. Good Luck!
  8. by   Havin' A Party!
    Cindy -- Don't underestimate your qualifications. You've intimate knowledge of the place and from your extended tenure I'm sure management is aware of your abilities.

    I say if you continue to like this facility and the type of work it offers, you'll do a good job.

    Are the majority of the nurses there RNs or LPNs?
  9. by   newgrad2004
    I know new grads who have taken supervisor or charge positions with in the year. Crazy yes. But its the shortage, so it isnt hard or doesnt take long to move up. I would be scared. But if you feel ok with it. Good luck to you!

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