How did YOU make YOUR transition from Floor nursing to Administrative nursing??

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    Just wanted to know the various ways you lovely Nurses have made the smooth transition from an experienced floor nurse to an ADON/DON or Administrator of Nursing or any administration position?? What position did you have before and what position do you have now?? How many years of experience did you have?? Also what degree did you obtain?? :heartbeat Thanks in advance!! :heartbeat
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  3. 15 Comments so far...

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    Its been years since I've been in management, but I do remember a few things.

    A transition will be smoother if you have the support from corporate or your adm. Training and inservices and a mentor or someome to go to with questions.
    Don't distance yourself from your staff. Keep and open ear and open door.

    Read thru some of the other threads on here and you will get a good bit of advice.


    Now...the transition back to "just a nurse" wasn't all that hard, but it was hard to remember "hey, I'm not the boss anymore" it was easy to walk out the door after my shift was done and not have to worry about the med error another nurse made, the call offs, the family complaint, the report that needs to be made to the state...........
    pixie120 likes this.
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    Graduated as an LPN in 1986...unit manager by 1992...staff development by 1994....to MDS in 1998...(RN/ASN in 2005)...ADON in 2008...DON in 2011.

    I took my time getting here because my kids were young, I loved the MDS role and it allowed me a great deal of flexibility to come and go as I needed to with my kids. Was always so fortunate to have bosses that gave me no crap when I left late afternoon to go to a ballgame and come back later to finish my MDS's. I knew if I kept going up the food chain any sooner that I would lose some of that flexibility.

    Once the kids are completely grown and gone I would love to try my hand as an MDS or DON consultant. That will probably involve some overnight travel and that has got to wait a couple more years, which only gives me more time and experience as a DON.
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    Quote from Nascar nurse
    Graduated as an LPN in 1986...unit manager by 1992...staff development by 1994....to MDS in 1998...(RN/ASN in 2005)...ADON in 2008...DON in 2011.

    I took my time getting here because my kids were young, I loved the MDS role and it allowed me a great deal of flexibility to come and go as I needed to with my kids. Was always so fortunate to have bosses that gave me no crap when I left late afternoon to go to a ballgame and come back later to finish my MDS's. I knew if I kept going up the food chain any sooner that I would lose some of that flexibility.

    Once the kids are completely grown and gone I would love to try my hand as an MDS or DON consultant. That will probably involve some overnight travel and that has got to wait a couple more years, which only gives me more time and experience as a DON.
    Your career sounds a lot like mine, although I graduated 2002 LPN, nurse manager from 2002 to 2010, all nurse manager roles including ADON, and took a break and went to Assisted Living, got RN 2010, DON 2011 BUT I think I prefer the nurse consultant role either in AL or SNF, because this daily dramafest is really wearing.

    I had no idea, seriously, that as the DON, people come to work with a 15 minute verbal barrage of crap that they lay right on top of my desk, everyday, and actually think I will fix that dramafest garbage crap. Some of my RN nurse managers fight like little kids and my ED INVITED staff splitting, i guess to entertain her/him. Luckily THAT ED is gone, . Some even CALLED the owner,seriously, before they will tell me what the issues are, call the police, but NEVER would they call the state hotline, the corporate compliance officer violates more employee rights that he can make a policy NOT to violate and he sends out scathing emails. It's like going to the stoning wall every morning, then afternoon, and then by cell phone.
    Needless to say, I no longer work for that particular company, have moved on...still feel a bit stinged by all of that..learning not to feed in or generate or even listen to the dramafest garbage. What I cannot understand is, in this struggling economy, and staff know there are 4 people looking for one job in healthcare, wouldn't you act better rather than worse? Are you NOT interested in keeping your job? Boggles my brain. (and during that dramafest, we had QIS 3 week survey, can you imagine what other behaviors we had to deal with? It was mentally and emotionally exhausting..it's no wonder families and resident call the state so much in that building.. seriously...).
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    I've been ADON for about a month now. First I was a floor nurse, then the MDS coordinator, and now ADON. Definitely having wonderful support from the other departments has made this so much easier, and my DON is a dream! This is a new facility as well as a new position for me, so I've been asking a lot of questions (don't want to step on any toes or mess up their policies). Nearly everyone I've spoken to has been very positive and willing to help.

    Now it's great because I get to help coach the new grads, help out on the floor, and I get to listen to the staff and residents. I get to figure out how to make things better, and I'm lucky enough to have and ED and a coorporate willing to work with us.

    I have 2 years exp in LTC and I have my associates degree. I really want to get my bachelor's degree eventually!
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    I started out as a CNA back in 1990, then a CMT in 1992, and then a RN in 1999. I became the night shift charge nurse right out of school and within 6 months I was the ADON. Not because I wanted to but because I was the only other RN left in the facility and the DON was threatening to quit without an ADON. The company then moved me in January 2000 to a sister facility as the DON. It all happened rather fast for me and sometimes I think it would have been better to take it at a slower pace. However I adapted well and my very first survey was deficiency free. Took a lot to get there though and you have to be willing to put in the time and effort. Good luck with your decision.
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    It was very easy for me. Prior to becoming a nurse I had always held administrative/corporate jobs in other fields. Floor nursing was heinous for me to adjust to. I still marvel that anything gets communicated.
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    RN, BSN in 96'. Worked oncology for 2 years, pediatrics for 3 years and LTC 2 years; majority of my working life was doing something other than nursing. Economy changes brought me back into nursing about 2 1/2 yrs ago. Worked p/t as LTC floor nurse for 2 years, the DON kept asking me about my 'goals'. I was thinking it was time for us to part ways and she was thinking ADON; that has been my role for 3 months now.

    That role is more natural for me, but turning out to be not at all what I expected. There are many days when I just move from one fire to another and get thrown into things I have to figure out the solution. But the challenge is what I guess I thrive on. So now my plan is to figure out how to address these fires so we can move onto bigger and better things....what I feel we are here to do....provide care on all fronts that makes you feel proud to have done and make the business a buck plus staff happiness and all in between; at least for the majority.

    Right now I just feel like I'm spinning my wheels with a long list of issues and what to do with them, I guess I've decided to put myself in the fact finding focus for now.
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    I graduated in 1996 with BSN. Worked for 1 1/2 years as a psych floor nurse then went to LTC where I worked as MDS Coordinator/ADON for 13 years and now DON for the past 4 months. I have loved every position so far
    KbmRN likes this.
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    Somehow, I have ended up being the floor nurse that all my administration counts on yet, haven't moved up the food chain. I understand that most management positions require an RN but, why do the higher up come to me every time something needs fixed? I am always told what an important "go-to" nurse I am. I have taken all the responsibility of running the shift. When anything comes up, I am asked to leave my patients,floor and even building to clean up messes elsewhere. Also of course, while finishing my own work. I always get it done or at least the fire put out so that it can be followed up on. Is that my mistake?


    I was offered an interim unit manager position by my last DON. He let me know that he would like me to take the position permanently but cooperate policy stated it was an RN only slot. I am starting back to school but would like to know what I can do now. Is it just a matter of being better at the politics involved?


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