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Leaving that first job during orientation.

Nurses   (2,417 Views 7 Comments)
by Elysium_Won Elysium_Won (Member)

888 Profile Views; 29 Posts

I graduated from nursing school in December 2006. I had three job offers, one of which was to remain at the unit & hospital where I worked as a tech during school. It was a great place and I truly loved the people I worked with. However, I opted to join a much larger hospital in a completely different type of unit because A.) I thought it would be a great learning experience, B.) they painted an wonderful picture of their environment and culture and C.) they offered a fantastic tuition repay program (which has to be repaid w/ interest if you leave).

After going through the classroom orientation/classes and the outside training course they offered, the new orientees hit the unit for unit specific orientation. There were two of us on my unit. It was the most needlessly tense environment I have ever worked in. People would cheer when they found out the manager had left for the day or wasn't coming in. There was a lot of talking about people behind their backs (comments on personal life as well as professional). Many other "little" things also occurred. All of this, I could have gotten past but at the end of the day, the type of unit was not my thing and I realized this about 3 weeks into my unit orientation. However, I thought I needed to give it a fair chance and I wondered if I felt this way partly because of the newness of it all, given that it was my first nursing position.

After 2 full months on unit orientation (and a total of 4 months at the hospital) I knew I would not be happy there. I was coming home miserable and making others miserable at home. When an opportunity came up to return to the place I had worked at in school, I carefully thought through all the options and it seemed like a no brainer - return to the place where you were happy & fit the unit, liked the people, and knew they were all outstanding nurses. I even considered the repayment of the tuition money and decided $ does not = happiness and it was worth repaying it, interest and all. It definately was not a lightly-made decision.

I went in to tender my resignation knowing that the manager would be dissappointed and frustrated (the other orientee left weeks earlier w/ no notice and they had lost many other orientees in the previous year) but I was not prepared for what happened. She told me I was "unprofessional" to let them put me through training just to leave. She was going to mark me as ineligible for rehire and that would be a red flag to anyone who called for a reference. I had always been told before that the orientation process was a chance for both parties to see if there was a good fit or not. If I had not been working out well, they sure would not have hesitated to let me go. When I explained the main reason I was leaving (not having a good fit with the type of unit) she said I should have realized that early on. She told me I was letting the whole team down because it was so close to the end of my orientation (it was scheduled to end in 1 more month - which is 1 month short of what they promised to begin with because they felt I was progressing well enough) and I asked if she would rather someone stay and not be happy and have that come across to their patients. (I wouldn't be the only one..)

I realize my part of the blame here is in not speaking up about every "little" thing that was wrong. (Evidently, nobody that works there ever does either, they just sit complaining behind the scenes.) But honestly, if the fit were good for me, I could have been able to work with the other issues.

So I guess my reason for this post is to ask - how long DO you give it before you decide it's not a good fit? I thought two months was almost not enough time to really know, but evidently it's a good thing I didn't give it longer! I really would have been blasted. :uhoh3:

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643 Posts; 8,123 Profile Views

Here's how I see it-- this impacts YOUR LIFE personally. It impacts her life only in a small way professionally. You need to do what is good for YOU.

She's just mad because she is looking worse and worse to her management (they probably track turnover, just like my hospital does). The heck with her. Furthermore, she may just be blowing smoke about the reference.

If you have the other job, you don't need this one for a reference anyway. And if some other job demands a reference, just explain it wasn't a good fit. Or don't even list the job. You were only there for a few months.

I left my first job in orientation after 4 months. The job was misrepresented to me, the people were awful, the manager crazy. I had no trouble finding another job.

Good luck in the future!

Oldiebutgoodie

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mom2michael is a MSN, RN, NP and specializes in Rural Health.

1,168 Posts; 7,455 Profile Views

I left my 1st nursing job after 2 months of floor orientation. They lied, they were catty and it was one of the worst jobs I ever worked in my life. Not to mention, my manager was psycho nuts on a good day.

I went back to my previous facility where I worked all thru NS and I went back to a job I love.

I got a lot of smoke blown about the references and the ever faithful "do not hire list" I even got threatened with them getting me fired from my new job (they share the same name but are not affiliated but they were hoping I wouldn't know that). HR was great but my manager was nuts about it. HR did tell me if I left w/o proper notice (it changed from 3 to 4 weeks depending on who I talked to) that I wouldn't be eligible for rehire. The facility is 1.5 hours away from my house, I really didn't want to make the drive ever again......there are 18 other facilities in this area to work for...it was a chance I was willing to take by leaving before my full notice was worked.......

I've been at the new facility for almost 4 months now, no problems at all and in fact...HR there still laughs to this day about 1st facility trying to get me fired from a placed I've worked for over 2 years......

I am now looking for PRN jobs and haven't had one bit of trouble finding a job and getting offers despite being told I would always be "blacklisted". I just list on my reason for leaving....took position at X facility. I was asked during my interview at the facility I finally decided upon for PRN work why I left and I said "floor nursing is not for me...I enjoy ER" and that was good enough.

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mercyteapot has 20 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Dev. Disabilities, Health Disparities.

2,756 Posts; 21,797 Profile Views

This woman makes it sound as if she doesn't hear this all the time, and given what you are describing, that is obviously untrue. She'd do better to look at how she can improve the experience on her unit than unloading on everyone who quits, but that's probably not going to happen.

As to your question, I don't know how long is long enough to stick something out, but I do agree that ''not eligible for rehire'' isn't the death knell your NM would like to believe that it is. Most likely, you'll be asked to explain why you left and some generic explanation such as that suggested above will suffice. When it comes down to it, hospitals who lose orientees right out of training probably pick up as many recruits from other facilities as they lose and it is probably close to a wash, not that they'd ever admit it! I do hope that if given the chance to share your discussion with the NM in an exit interview, you'll do so.

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RNfromMN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Developmental Disabilities, LTC.

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She's just mad because she is looking worse and worse to her management (they probably track turnover, just like my hospital does).

That is exactly what I was thinking when I read the original post.

If you have the other job, you don't need this one for a reference anyway. And if some other job demands a reference, just explain it wasn't a good fit. Or don't even list the job. You were only there for a few months.

The only thing I'd be worried about is what if the OP hates the new job as much as the first? That would suck.

So I guess my reason for this post is to ask - how long DO you give it before you decide it's not a good fit? I thought two months was almost not enough time to really know, but evidently it's a good thing I didn't give it longer! I really would have been blasted. :uhoh3:

It occurred to me after reading your post, if you'd told her you wanted to leave after a couple weeks, she probably would have turned this around and said, "You've only been here a little while...you'd be letting the team down if you left now...just give it a little bit longer..."

Good luck - I hope you let us know how things work out. You sound like you have a good head on your shoulders - I think it's awesome that you know exactly what you want and aren't afraid to go for it.

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29 Posts; 888 Profile Views

Thanks for the replies folks. Pretty much confirms what I thought/knew. ;) I have no worries about job references and I know the "old" unit & staff very well so I have no fear about it not working out. They truly are great. (I was the idiot to leave in the first place! Lesson learned.)

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112 Posts; 1,884 Profile Views

Elysium_Won, your decision to leave that hospital sounds reasonable. We all know that the responsibility itself of being a nurse is hard enough wherever you go; if you add the low morale on that unit to the things you have to deal with everyday when you have decided to stay there, it would have been very bad for your personal well being and for your family members as you were unintentionally affecting them negatively with your high level of work related stress --this is like a virus you are carrying to your family.

Regarding your question, I personally prefer to stay for a year before I would apply to another hospital; but I think I would do the same thing if I were you for the sake of the well being of my family. It's really hard to definitely say how long a person would stay before one decides if "it's not a good fit" since different people can tolerate different degree of stress. For instance,

Nurse A can tolerate Situation #1 better than Nurse B does. however, Nurse B can tolerate Situation# 2 better than Nurse A does. Therefore, it does not mean Nurse A is better than Nurse B or vice versa. It's all depends on the context of the situation and the people who are involved. Perhaps it's more accurate to say that it depends on individual's preferences or subjective experience.

The most important thing for you is to be in the place where you feel you can function better as a nurse because if you don't take care of yourself, who will take care of you-- that manager? I don't think so!

wishing you the best!

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