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Being a Team Player

Nurses Article   (31,035 Views | 27 Replies | 544 Words)

1 Article; 2,969 Profile Views; 49 Posts

Many nurses want to advance in their careers. Few go into the nursing profession planning on being a floor nurse forever. Unfortunately, many fail to learn the very basic principle of how to be a team player.

Being a Team Player

I was fortunate to have been oriented to the world of nursing by wonderful team players. They considered the work to be everyone's work. They were highly organized nurses who put the patient's needs first. If there was work to be done, it didn't matter to whom it was assigned.

Not all nurses work according to this principle. There will always be those who, when their assigned work is completed, are not willing to help others. I have heard comments such as "she never helps me, why should I help her?"

Early on I tried to differentiate between coworkers that I loved to work with and those that frustrated me. I carefully looked at all of their traits to determine whose work ethic to emulate. The nurses that I most loved working with were ultimate team players. They not only asked if you needed help, they anticipated what you would need and just jumped in to help. No strings attached.

I believe that learning to be a team player has allowed me to advance in my organization. I never use the phrases "It's not fair" or "It's not my fault". We all know life isn't fair; there is really no need to point it out or whine about it. I also believe in taking personal responsibility for one's actions (which could be the topic of another article!). If I made a decision or did something, I took responsibility for it. It didn't matter if it was good or bad, I owned up to it. Unfortunately, the majority of people do not do this.

When a position would open within our facility, I would often hear people complaining about or at least discussing why certain individuals get promoted, while others languish. Each person is a novice when they start their career. I truly believe after the person has advanced through the novice stage they come to a fork. They can either choose the path of excellence or the path of mediocrity.

Those that choose the path of excellence excel in their field. They are excellent team players, take responsibility for their own actions, and advance their careers. They inspire others just by being around them. Their enthusiasm is infectious. They love what they do and strive to make a difference. They are often chosen for promotions.

Those that choose the path of mediocrity excel at nothing. They just trudge through each day and are there only to collect a payday. They don't take pride in their work. In fact, their work is just a job, it is not a career and it certainly doesn't define who they are. Instead of being inspiring, they are often dreadful to be around. They take no responsibility for their actions and usually will whine that things aren't fair and that it is someone else's fault. They are rarely promoted.

I know what fork in the road that I chose after my novice time was complete. Are you at that fork in the road? Have you long passed it, but realize that you chose the wrong direction? It's never too late to double back, take the right direction, and become a true team player.

1 Article; 2,969 Profile Views; 49 Posts

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gonzo1 has 15 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in CEN, ED, ICU, PSYCH, PP.

1,702 Posts; 23,653 Profile Views

I'm a helper. And I love to be helped. Work always goes easier when many hands help.

To me it is very disheartening to be working while 2 or 3 nurses are sitting at the station talking about being drunk last night.

I believe no one should sit until all can sit.

Keeping this in mind I have decided that I probably need to put in for charge nurse now after 5 years so I can see that this happens.

I would lead by example.

I have been fortunate to be in both work situations and I know which one is best for staff and patient.

Thanks for writing about something very important

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11 Posts; 1,432 Profile Views

Wouldn't it be a wonderful profession if all nurses thought of ways of being a great team player. Having worked in many different settings and with a wide variety of nurses, the fact is nurses are human. Most want to be part of a team but some just don't know how to function in this role.

I am interested into others input as to how to facilitate the learning of the nurse as to how to become a "team-player".

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1 Post; 631 Profile Views

Being a teamplayer is great , yet I have found others who waste (IMHO) their time and or do not know how to prioritize their tasks.... Then look to others to catch them up or do their work for them. I will gladly help others however not to the detriment of my own assignment whch is the expectation of some co workers. My assignment is what I will be held accountable for..... I complete my priorities... if time allows I help wherever needed, and of course if a co worker s not available and a a pt/resident has a need I wll take care of their need.

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CrufflerJJ has 5 years experience as a RN and specializes in ICU.

1 Article; 1,023 Posts; 21,591 Profile Views

Those that choose the path of mediocrity excel at nothing. They just trudge through each day and are there only to collect at payday. They don't take pride in their work. In fact their work is just a job, it is not a career and it certainly doesn't define who they are. Instead of being inspiring, they are often dreadful to be around. They take no responsibility for their actions and usually will whine that things aren't fair and that it is someone else's fault. They are rarely promoted.

I feel sorry for those folks working just for a paycheck. Yes, there may be times where you're forced into a job that you do just to earn some $$$ to keep your family going. Over the long haul, though, there HAS to be something more. Life is too darn short to be unhappy with your job.

I dumped a successful 22 year-long engineering career a few years back, after realizing this fact. I've had enough patients die on me over the years (as a volunteer paramedic), with ZERO advanced warning, to realize just how short and how precious life truly is.

With the strong support of my wife, I went back to school, did an accelerated BSN, and am currently interviewing for my first nursing job.

It's all worth it. Push yourself outside your comfort zone. Do what you want to do - whatever makes you happy. If it means a 40% pay cut, SO BE IT. Money isn't the do-all & end-all.

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DixieRedHead has 20 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in ED/ICU/TELEMETRY/LTC.

638 Posts; 9,682 Profile Views

You can't remodel the world. People will be what they will be. Generally, your only motivational opportunity will be by example.

Do what you think should be done. If others need help, help. If you need help and don't get any, ask.

If you still don't get any, keep working.

Be professional.

Be STRONG.

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3 Posts; 765 Profile Views

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Edited by mebaker12
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madwife2002 has 26 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in RN, BSN, CHDN.

1 Follower; 74 Articles; 4,777 Posts; 121,028 Profile Views

I work really hard at being a team player, I am probably one of the strongest nurses on our floor so I rarely get help because when I am snowed under, so are everybody else LOL

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8 Posts; 934 Profile Views

I find being a team player can very challenging? I love to teach and share other colleagues if they are doing something new for the first time, or if the opportunity for a procedure arises and I'm very capable of performing I will look for someone who doesn't have that experience. If they do not have time because of pt load then I just get to have more experience honing my own skills. It's very rewarding to see a colleague be able to advance their skills. The challenge to give an example; I was asked to help with a port-a-cath; if I had any experience could I show him how to reimplement a new one.? I said I'd be glad, let me know which room I'll meet you in there. I was heading that way and the gentleman that was asking was at the desk with fellow charge nurse and two other RN's. To skip a long conversation which I was not included in on after standing there several moment listening of this matter to reimplement a new one or as one said pass the buck to the next shift...The conversation I felt all three did not know how to re implement a port-a-cath...fellow co-worker didn't feel comfortable passing the buck so he asked several to help him since he never did this skill. I was more than happy to help. The fellow co-worker did a great job, he stated we don't see these much on our floor. I have only been working at this facility for seven month so I'm the newbee with experience from working ICU & ER. Remember pt's are always number one! Not only was I helping a colleague with a new skill to him but the main importance was the pt didn't miss out on heparin therapy until the next shift arrived. The next day, same crew of colleagues I started getting different vibes. I started to feel real uncomfortable as the shift progressed. I didn't say anything during their conversation as stated above, I just listened and went to help co-worker because they were already discussing even after they knew co-worker ask me to help, whether to pass the buck...was this because they didn't know how???? To me thats okay we all learn something knew every day I hope. Too me that a GREAT day to learn at least one knew thing a day...that's progress...if this was the case why didn't they ask to come watch the procedure, "the more the better" then everyone would know how to do this. This did not happen, instead because I helped a colleague and pt. I felt like I stepped on someones toes....Why does this happen??? I thought I would try to remedy these weird vibes and brought in chocalates the next day, every one was happy and back to usual selves, "I thought" til the next weekend. Life and people's lives are too short, could this be jealousy??? Can someone send there thoughts as to why this keeps happening...the example above is not the onle time this happens...this has happened several time in a past facility I also worked at... some colleagues seem to respect while others seem to move father & farther away with eye balling everytime you turn around. Why do people feel this way and how can I remedy from this continually happening??? Why?? It's rewarding at the time and then a slap in the face later on........Thanks for sharing your thoughts everyone for being a team player....it's exciting to hear!!!!...if only we could put all of us that believe in Team Player to work at one facility!!! WoW a concept and plan!!! LOL If life could be this easy... LOL Keep being Team Players twinklebelle

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1 Article; 49 Posts; 2,969 Profile Views

Twinklebelle-

You are receiving the "who the hell does she think she is" treatment. Sometimes those of us who are "doers" make the pass the buck people look bad (okay, most of the time).

That's the hard part about being a team player and helping others even if they haven't helped you (and never do). But it is all about putting the patient first, so hold your head up high, keep on keeping on, prove yourself, and you will move past the pass the buck people! :)

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QueenIam has 20 years experience and specializes in all.

10 Posts; 882 Profile Views

Teamplayer is like a football team, If everyone play their position we will have a touch down instead of a technical knock out. Nursing is my passion which we are here to serve the people. I have been in the nursing field for 20 years and just finish my BSN and I am proud of myself. I practice Excellence everyday. I have Excel form CNA-UNITCLERK-PCA-PCT-PHLEBOTOMY, HHA, CAREGIVER, PRIVATE DUTY and BSN. EXCELLENCE IS MY BUSINESS AND PERFECTION IS GOD'S BUSINESS

Edited by QueenIam
misspelled

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vintagestudent specializes in Just started in HH.

101 Posts; 3,238 Profile Views

Twinklebelle-

You are receiving the "who the hell does she think she is" treatment. Sometimes those of us who are "doers" make the pass the buck people look bad (okay, most of the time).

That's the hard part about being a team player and helping others even if they haven't helped you (and never do). But it is all about putting the patient first, so hold your head up high, keep on keeping on, prove yourself, and you will move past the pass the buck people! :)

Wow, isn't that the truth. I'm a nursing student and already feel the tension between those classmates who are team players and those who aren't. Talk about having to rise above the me-centeredness. Nursing should be about taking care of our patients, about giving the best care possible. Many still don't get it. God bless those of you who are team players at your work sites. I'd love to work with you someday.

Service with a gentle smile...or a huge grin, whichever is appropriate for your patient. :):D

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