vent on preceptor :( not ready to be off orientation but no choice..

  1. I am in my last (6th) week of orientation. Happy and terrified. Happy because I no longer have to work along side with my preceptor. Terrified because it's my last week he's still doing half of my patient care FOR me. Calling the doctor FOR me. not because I don't want to do it, but he just takes over. He even gets mad when I say I want to call and learn how to speak with the physicians. He then gives me a lecture me on how I don't delegate. It's his first time precepting, he just never learned to "let go". He sometimes will say "I am gonna let you do everything" at the beginning of the shift, but as soon as it gets busy he starts to take everything over!! He's a great nurse/co-worker to others(most of the time), but when it comes to being a preceptor, he turns into a complete different person! He's generally nice, and smiles but whenever he's with me - he never smiles. no kidding.

    - He bosses me around instead of treating me like a co-worker and a nurse capable of making own decision when he's stressed. "Go do ____ right now" "No, stop that, go to room _____ right now".

    - Constantly tell me "You need to be faster, I don't know how, but just be faster"

    - Gets mad at me for taking time on looking up medication, not passing med fast enough and do my 3 check - he say it's waste of time to do that many check.

    - Only answer question when he's in good mood, otherwise he will just say "you don't have time for this right now" and tell me to do something else.

    - When we are in the patient's room, he'd boss me around, to a point my patient had to secretly ask me if he's my boss and "why is he bossing you around"...

    - Today in morning round, our manager is there, so he starts to question me all these things he never asked me or talked to me about, in the past 6 week, he never does that, when I have question he doesn't explain, but he acts totally different in front of the manager, and it made me looked back because I didn't know how to answer some of the questions!

    - When I offered to help a coworker out, he gets mad at me and wouldn't let me to do things for them even though I had time and already offered my help to my other coworkers. So that end up making me look bad.

    - But he turns around and try to act like the most helpful person on the unit. I don't get it!!! I am not trying to compete with him but sometimes the way he does things just make him look like his insecure if I gain other people's approval and he tries to make me look bad.

    - Today, we have a patient about to discharge. In front of other nurses, he said it loudly, "I am going to you do EVERYTHING by yourself, I am not going to do anything for you, I want you to focus on discharge and I will take care of everything else for you.
    So go do the discharge, don't go to other patient's room!" It's not like I don't know how to do it or always ask him for help about discharge. I know how to do it, and I have done it! He just never let me finish the whole process by myself - he likes to take over the job and tell me to do other things.  When he said it like this in front of all other nurses, I think it just made me look stupid as if I am slow, don't know how to do it.Anyway, since he didn't allow me to do anything else for my other patient. I focused on discharge. In the middle of it, I checked on one of my patient. He said he was going to give their medication and all, turned out NOTHING was given. 2 IV antibiotic are late, PO meds are late too. He end up didn't do anything other than taking vital sign for my other patient receiving transfusion.  GOSH!!! It was already almost 1800. And 3 of my patient's 1700 medication is not given.

    - He always does this, lack of communication, changes his mind constantly, sometimes he will say one thing, but do a complete opposite thing.  Or sometimes I will discuss about the things we should bring up to the doctor, he will tell me "no, what's the point of saying that? Don't need it. don't say it" and the next thing you know, the doctor comes in - he goes up to the doctor and address the whatever I just discussed with him.

    Anyway, he seem to be a helpful co worker, a good nurse. But just SUCKS at being a preceptor.He acts differently when he's in front of the doctors, nurses then when he's with me. The only reason I choose to stay with him is because I didn't want to cause drama and I know he's a good nurse. I still learn from him but mostly just secretly observing and taking notes. Talking to management is not an option because he just acts so differently in front of them than me. Management think he's doing a good job, and I doubt they will believe me if I mention all the things he's been doing.

    Sigh anyway, thanks for letting me vent. I don't feel ready to be off orientation but have no choice, I guess I already have the worst planned - quit - if i feel this job is too much for me or if I am unsafe for my patient.
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    About simplelc

    Joined: Oct '12; Posts: 1


  3. by   not.done.yet
    You want to do everything for yourself but say you aren't ready to be off orientation. Recognize you are never on your own even off orientation. Ask for help when you need it. Let your bitterness toward your preceptor go.
  4. by   nyteshade
    It's tough being a preceptor...believe me I know. I totally see his thought process although it may seem bizarre. As a preceptor you don't want to see your preceptee fail, because it looks like a failure on your part. Eventually, though you must learn to let go.
  5. by   BrendaH84
    Dear Simplelc,
    Oh My God, word for word, letter for letter, line by line, every single word you wrote, and I do mean every word (except my preceptor is a woman) is EXACTLY what my preceptor does! EVERYTHING, even saying sometiing is stupid-but then using my exact words when they talk to the Doctor! Everything you wrote-same thing! I texted my husband on my way home from work one day, all I wrote was "she is BAT SH1T CRAZZZY!"
    I will never understand her, never.
    Finally/the only time my manager has every talked to me/was to say it looked like I give my preceptor a hard time and what was MY DEAL? I was speechless, I wasn't able to put it into words like you just did, plus like you said-she's diff around everyone else, who'd believe me? All I mustered up was that I was so new, and I would try to do better!
    Shoot me now!
    I keep figuring they'll let me go after my 3 months probation! I let ya know how it goes when the time comes!!
  6. by   BrendaH84
    OH YA, I ESPECIALLY love it when they talk real loud about how we're gonna do this and that today, then she ignores me allday and is off doing who knows what! She actually LEAVES THE FLOOR, to smoke or whatever!
  7. by   djh123
    I'm a middle-aged guy, looking for my first RN job, and among perhaps a few other things, the 'mean'/crazy/weird nurse thing has been the biggest surprise to me. And kind of depressing as well. This field is tough enough, and I'm just shocked at hearing and reading about these people, plus I saw one good example in my preceptorship as well. Don't call me hopelessly naive - in my previous career, although I saw a few people fly off the handle, it was VERY rare, and in general, co-workers almost always treated each other with respect. I don't know what the hell is wrong with people, honestly. Sure, the job is stressful, but I would think people would want to lean on each other as a result, not to take it out on each other.
    And hey - I do know there are a lot of nice nurses to which this doesn't apply. I've seen them too. But still!
  8. by   SarahB84
    djh, no one could have put it better than you did. i also worked in an office for several years and like you said, poor behavior was rare, it's creepy, suprising and VERY diappointing.
  9. by   HouTx
    Educator here - just wanted to share some insight that I have gained over the bazillion years I've been dealing with orientation, new grads, etc....

    Most organizations do not provide sufficient training or structure for Preceptors. It's just "poof! You're now a Preceptor!". Being a preceptor is not a 'natural' part of nursing. It involves a whole new set of skills and behaviors. In a best-case scenario, it even involves a whole different (or addendum) job description. They also need some supervision & follow through to make sure that they are performing as they should.

    Untrained/unprepared Preceptors tend to try to establish a power gradient with the poor preceptee.... "Me boss, you must obey me"... instead of focusing on helping their newbie gain the skills and confidence needed to become independent. They should also know what type of things are needed for specific types of development; fostering critical thinking; instilling confidence; improving communication skills; time management, etc...... I would bet that the OP's preceptor doesn't have a clue.

    I know that I am old and cranky, but it just chaps my hide when everyone thinks that education tasks (including precepting) are something that can just be assigned, without any preparation or competency development.

  10. by   djh123
    Maybe because I'm middle-aged - even though I'm a new RN - but I agree with you ('HouTx') completely. My preceptor was good, especially as a nurse, and she did teach me some things, but she could've done a little more of that. As you say, a lot of them are just thrust into the thing and don't think enough about - or weren't taught at all - what would be best for the student.
  11. by   BrendaH84
    it's also odd how some techs will sit around, yes sit and read, while i'm crazy busy, if i ask them to help Joe to the bathroom, they get huffy. that's fun.
  12. by   Anne36
    simplelc, wow your story sounds like some of the preceptors I have had. They interrupt my med pass and tell me who to give to next and so on because they have been working the hall forever and Im brand new. It is helpful at the beggining but I am on my own for the first time tommorow night and I feel ready in some ways but in others Im a little scared. I had one super bad night last week with my preceptor that made me want to quit. I have been getting physically ill because of the anxiety and stress of this job. Im going to work tommorow but I am going to make myself a "plan" for what I would like to accomplish in my ideal night and how to handle everything else that could throw my night off. Im also working on a list for trouble shooting s/s of illness and other issues that could arise. Im bringing a small notepad to write down notes as I go along. If Im going to survive this I need to make sure I am as prepared as I can be and learn something new each night to add to my knowledge.