-OP, given that Alice was likely your 3rd or 4th preceptee, I and a few other saw immediately to question your communication skills and leadership abilities. I'll elaborate as I go.
Not sure why you immediately question my leadership skills but ok ...
-Good observation and efforts on your part.
The point was that in the first half of her rotation I was right there with her holding her hand and watching her. Alice is by no means ignorant or incapable, in fact, she is quite capable. She has a bad attitude and is lazy. That's the issue I tried to get at later ....
-Communication/Leadership: Wk1 thru Wk 6 she was "improving"--what is less than "lazy"? Moving on...on day 1 solo, did you re-iterate the expectations of her? See next comment.
Alice started out with the stereotypical student big eyed terror look when you hit the floor for the first time without your nursing school buddies. The first time we walked into a patient room she could barely speak let alone do an assessment or anything else. So I taught her to deal with that. And I taught her the work flow on my unit, how to do an admit, how to prioritize, how to do a targeted assessment, how to interpret a fetal monitoring strip, how to place the fetal monitors, how to start and IV. So by midterm, she had calmed down, she could talk to the patients. She was still nervous and had a bit of an attitude but I thought it was still nerves. That's the improvements I saw. Every single shift when we were walking from the locker room where we met to the nursing station where we received our assignment we reviewed what the expectations for the shift were. Was it an observation day? Was she to be primary with me as a resource? At no time should she have had any question in her mind what her role was in relation to me.
-On day 1 solo, you lose nothing by re-running through the process for her, as in, first lets do H2T assessment, then we start IVs, etc. especially when she voices her poor IV skills to you in front of the patient (imagine her embarrassment, that's why she said this 'Alice tried to blame me for not making her feel welcome and for "pushing her too hard."')
This was not her first day solo. We don't always start IVs, sometimes they come from triage with them already in place, sometimes we come in to a patient who has been admitted by another nurse, it was one example I was using of her refusing to take advantage of a learning opportunity. On her rubric it clearly states that if the opportunity is available to practice skills such as IVs, did the student take advantage of it? At that specific point she had maybe 6 shifts left and she had yet to independently start an IV. I wanted to see if she would even try, as I didn't know I felt another chance would even happen. I'm sorry I wasn't clear enough for you. Perhaps you're right that my communication on an online chat board wasn't clear enough.
Fast forward to when the patient is complete. Alice is nowhere to be found. I'm in pushing with her and the charge nurse has to find her.â€
-At this point, you were rightly frustrated, but how is it that she left the room without you knowing? That's a major disrespect which likely stems from lack of communication and leadership abilities...on your part. (Please refer to my first comment above).
We don't stay in the room with the patient, we watch tones from the desk at times. She had many opportunities to wander away, as admit to pushing specifically for this patient and for many patients is often hours apart. And my first priority is my patient. Even my students that have functioned well left the room to run and grabbed needed supplies and didn't feel the need to inform me every time.
I've confronted her on it and she always makes excuses, and I've now emailed her faculty.â€
-You confronted her multiple times? Did you once sit down with her to discuss she might be on track of failing this portion of her program? She makes excuses because throughout this 7-week relationship, she simply doesn't respect you (it takes two to tango).
YES!!!!!!! It didn't always start with confrontation. We had many discussions which eventually led to confrontations,if I was going to detail the entire interaction from start to finish no one was going to read it. It would have been too long. I was hitting the highlights.
...she only has 3-4 shifts left with me and I'm getting really frustrated with her...of the behavior I've observed. I feel like she's skated by through her whole program somehow and now she's finally having to actually do it and she can't.â€
-Those who lack good communication skills do experience more stress in life in general. Your resentment of her ("she's skated") likely manifested in your speech and body language => instant or further disrespect of you.
TL;DR: OP, you had "easy" first 2 or 3 preceptees, now you got a "harder" preceptee and d/t your lack of experience you did not know how to interact with her, ultimately leading to neither respecting either.
I'm boarding in MS, going to ER training soon, so I'm big with communication skills and leadership abilities.
No matter how you define leadership, the main focus of a leader is to get the most out of his/her people. And the first step is to get to know your people
so I'm curious, would you work with her? Based on everything I've seen from Alice, she's going to continue to do this until someone makes her stop or she's made to leave the field of nursing. I for one would not feel comfortable being her coworker because I'd feel responsible for her patients and mine because I'd wonder if she was paying attention to them or even on the floor. The words "patient abandonment" ran through my head a lot with her because literally if I was not directly supervising even the most basic task (read taking a temperature) she was gone. Even if I have the worst communication and leadership skills on the face of the planet, you cannot place 100% of the failure at my feet and I still can't see how you think you can deduced all these terrible shortcomings of mine from my post.