Advice on precepting a new grad :O)

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    Hello All!

    Recently I was asked and shocked too precept a new grad on the busy BUSY floor that I have been working on for only one year. A little reluctant at first, I accepted. Management and other staff are fully confident in me and Im honored, as teaching in nursing is a passion of mine. HOWEVER, I want to make this a good experience for the new grad. Im nervous because I want her to feel supported, learn as much as she can, and be confident when she gets out there on her own. I can remember how anxious, slow, and over-whelmed I was as a newbie and keep that in mind every day when we work together. We talk about our goals before the shift begins, and end our shift with what went well and what we can work on for next time. Ive told her that their are no dumb questions, and to ASK whenever unsure, and if I dont know the answer we'll utilize our resources together and figure it out. Ive also tried not to hover too much, breathe down her neck, or make her feel inadequate (because I personally had a preceptor who did that to me and it drove me nuts, made me feel stupid, and kind of made me feel like I had to please my preceptor). Can anyone including new grads, students, and experienced nurses share some advice or personal experiences so I can make this a positive experience for the new grad?? Thanks so much!!
    whslee01 likes this.

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  2. 4 Comments...

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    Sounds like you have a pretty good start already! The rest, however, is going to depend on the person that you are orienting. When I was orienting with an experienced nurse, I didn't need a whole lot of guidance, so it bothered me when she was breathing down my neck or micro-managing me. Then again, a new nurse can feel intimidated by the new environment and need LOTS of guidance. So get to know your orientee! I would just say the biggest thing is knowing how to handle the new nurse making mistakes. I think its good to be direct, but not overbearing or patronizing (which Im sure you are not anyway). Also, I dont know the condition of your unit, but try not to complain in front of the new nurse. Dont want to scare her off too quickly ( :
    bebbercorn likes this.
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    Quote from WunMsJayLPNtoRN
    ...try not to complain in front of the new nurse. Dont want to scare her off too quickly ( :
    ^Yup.
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    Hmm i am a new nurse just got off orientation .. it really does depend on each person. Some new grad nurses are more insecure than other and need the extra hand holding and some dont want it. So as preceptor yes you teach the technical stuff but have to figure out what each person needs and give only that and nothing more. I was the unsecured type so needed to literally see and know my preceptor was nearby otherwise I'd start worrying and what not. So in the beginning I was always with preceptor and she gradually left me with more alone time until one day I wondered where was my preceptor and then forgot about it as it was busy. New situations same thing she would introduce those in piece meal until I got all of it. After orientation I was paired with preceptor this time as her coworker so while we are no longer preceptor and student. I consult with her on complex cases and what not but otherwise I hold my own work load and some.

    My preceptor didn't like to talk much she rather I learn on my own so she would give me the situation and let me figure it out. Safety was never an issue as she was there to step in should patient or my own safety was in danger. and a few times she did have to as I was literally about to be hit by an agitated patient. (know your trainee's learning style and adapt.. if she's audio learner you'll need to speak more, if she's visual needs seeing, reading and if student is kinetic hands on well she's only going to learn by doing it herself).

    For each skill do explain show it to her once then have trainee do it 1x under your watch then the next time she does it by herself. Repeat for all skills and patient handling until she's accumulated enough bits of skills/knowledge either when orientation's up or she's show that she's ready. Politics well ..hopefully your trainee's bright enough to pick up on your body language and mimic. Clearly here you can't say watch out for so and so and this is good person etc.

    At the end of your day think about how you can improve as well. I'm glad that there are nurses out there that believe the newbie can be trained without trial by fire and being eaten alive to prove thier mettle. I was lucky to have a good preceptor who taught and protected me until I learned to defend myself. So when its my turn to precept I too will do the same.

    Good luck and you'll be an excellent preceptor
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    encourage open communication and talking processes and procedures out loud (i.e "i'm going to change this IV dressing because...and these are supplies I have to get ready and this is the policy I looked up and this is my step by step way of doing it). This can be pretty time consuming at the beginning, but it promotes dialogue, allows you to note any things that need correction and gets her/him used to the systematic way of doing things! good luck! (apologies for the terrible punctuation, im on my mobile)


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