you CANNOT eat me!

  1. I will soon be starting my first RN job in an ED. I am confident and eager to learn. I know have a TON to learn, and the coming months will be a struggle. I have thick skin but I know that there will be people who will try to eat me for lunch. So what I am asking for is a simple one liner to use, tactful but gets my point across, that even though I am new and may have asked a "stupid" question; doesnt mean they were born knowing all this stuff. I don't want to be rude, or insulting, just a statement to let them know they can't walk on me. I don't need comments about dealing with it or just letting it roll off my back. I know its coming, I know I will make plenty of mistakes, but already in my short stay I have seen the nasty that can come from coworkers. They were new once and made the same mistakes I will. I just want a friendly reminder that they were just like me.
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    About lulu rn

    Joined: Sep '07; Posts: 28; Likes: 4

    25 Comments

  3. by   Displaced
    I hate to say it, but you might be better off not saying anything at all, or just thanking the person after your question is answered. You could also just be clear with your preceptor from the beginning and tell them to expect a lot of questions, even stupid questions, because you want to learn so you can be a great nurse when you get off orientation. Any kind of "attitude" from you could cause trouble down the road.
  4. by   nurse_mo1986
    Quote from Displaced
    I hate to say it, but you might be better off not saying anything at all, or just thanking the person after your question is answered. You could also just be clear with your preceptor from the beginning and tell them to expect a lot of questions, even stupid questions, because you want to learn so you can be a great nurse when you get off orientation. Any kind of "attitude" from you could cause trouble down the road.

    i was thinkin the same thing...I know that you don't really think of it as an "attitude", but some nurses will be rude, hateful, and condescending to ya in the beginning...Don't like to put it like this, but we all had to go thru it, and you will too Welcome to the club
  5. by   BriWisco
    Kill em with kindness! No one can argue with a sincere smile and a positive attitude! Do your best and have confidence... and good luck with your new job!
  6. by   victoriaphibes
    a good one from over 20 years of customer service work: "thank you for letting me know!" smile, then walk away. it works, every time. most of the time what people want is to get a rise out of you. don't give them that satisfaction.

    as long as you establish your willingness to work, to learn, and to show firmness of character and good judgment in the decisions that you make, then the good nurses will see this and gravitate to you. they will be willing to share their knowledge and teach you the best of what they know. excellence gravitates toward excellence, believe it or not.

    one of the best customer service people that i ever knew had a q-tip framed and hung on her cubicle's wall. i asked her what it meant one day, and she said that it reminded her to "quit taking it personally." i have a q-tip hung on my wall to remind me of this each day.
  7. by   MissERN
    And I would be careful going in with the attitude that someone is going to "eat you for lunch". That doesn't always happen! I started as a new grad in the ED and I've NEVER had that problem. Yes, I am aware that that is not always the case, but I'm afraid that if you go in with that attitude that it might cause some problems. I agree with all the above posts...whenever someone corrects/coaches (or even criticizes) don't be quick to come back with a smart comment. I wish you the best and hope you love your new job...it's stressful, but it's fun too!!
  8. by   Pixie.RN
    Be a sponge, soak it up, and kill 'em with kindness! (Your coworkers, not your patients. ) I also started as a new grad in the ED a mere 9 months ago ... granted, I've been working in the same ED since 2005, so it's a little different for me. But one thing I've learned about negativity: there won't be any if you don't bring any. Usually works well. Good luck, and congratulations on your first RN job!!!
  9. by   solneeshka
    I'm with the previous poster. A huge dose of humility at this point will work to your advantage in the long run. By maintaining a firm countenance and giving a sincere "Thank you, I appreciate that" even if someone has been snotty with you, that will only earn you respect and make you look good. If someone is rude and you shrivel away, that makes you look weak. But if they are rude and you thank them for the information/instruction they provided, that shows character. A one-liner runs the risk of making you look silly. You won't be new forever and before long there will be a new batch of new RNs to pick on and they will move on from you! And then you will have the expertise and opportunity to demonstrate for them what a nurse who is decent to people looks like.

    (Also, keep in mind that nurses can get stressed out and behave that way - it's not necessarily personal. Yet another good reason to do your part to make certain the situation doesn't escalate into something personal.)
  10. by   ThrowEdNurse
    Also, as a new nurse you probably won't always realize when you are being "eaten." It becomes obvious later down the line when you have more experience and you think about and reflect on situations you were in and the responses (or lack there of) by your coworkers. It also may not just be evil or cruelness. But some nurses genuinely feel they need to "break them in." I think this is crazy, but you know, so are we!!!!
  11. by   Larry77
    And never whine about too many patients or too few breaks, if you man up and just work your butt off you will gain a lot of respect...
  12. by   SanDgroovy
    As a new RN in the ER, I appreciate this post. I've experienced some negativity but I always keep my head up, say "THANK YOU" and smile, and go on with my shift...that's the best one liner that could be used that is tasteful and no one gets hurt. I never vent about coworkers to coworkers, as a newbie, you don't know how to trust just yet, but it also keeps you from gossiping and giving a bad impression. I only vent about pts and I try to make it funny so it's not so dreadful.

    I've come to learn there are people you can always lean on to ask questions, while there are others I would NEVER dare. However, staying positive is getting me through orientation...I've come to realize that the GOOD, positive coworkers far outweigh the negative staff. I'm gravitating towards the RNs with great attitudes, they have the best stories and experiences, and they're super smart!

    Unfortunately, in my case at least, there are a couple of coworkers who will be outright rude until the targeted person stands up to them, but I steer clear & refuse to anticipate it (I feel if I do, it will only bring on an encounter)...so until then, I'm going to spend my time and energy in the ER learning and growing. Nursing is my second career, and I come from "team work" and "professional attitude at all times" environments and thought nursing was the same, until I graduated!

    Keep your head up, and remember to say THANK YOU and go on with your day (or night). Good luck!!
  13. by   2BSure
    I agree with the others. Having a set piece probably will cause you exactly what you do not want.

    It sounds a bit like you may have had an unpleasant experience elsewhere. Give your new colleagues the same benefit of the doubt that you want from them.
  14. by   amandaleebsn
    I have to agree with the "kill em with kindness" strategy. Being positive, and eager to learn will get respect and it may inspire other nurses to give you pointers and more education!

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