We received an e-mail from our manager that spoke of disappointment over some nursing staff  reading, sharing and expressing agreement with this article from allnurses.com: “Dear Nursing Students/Orientees: A Love Note from the Preceptor from Hell.” He attached the link to his e-mail, so of course I had to read the article he described as “negative, and almost confrontational, almost fully endorsing ‘nurses eating their young.’ Please know that there is no way we will ever precept new hires with the nasty attitude of this highly unprofessional article.”

First off, it isn’t an article so much as someone’s essay or editorial piece that the author admits in the beginning to writing in “an exhausted, frazzled moment after an insane day and trauma call.”  As for the rest, I found myself nodding along to most of the article.  I didn’t find it that negative.  It was a nurse speaking plainly about his/her experience as a preceptor.

I’m so tired of that buzzword “negative.”   My hospital has used it in the past to mean anyone who has something critical to stay – whether or not it is constructive is beside their point.  As a very new nurse, I was in a meeting where we were actually told by another manager that among upper management “there will be zero tolerance for negativity. If you’re openly not happy with any aspect of your job, leave willingly or they’ll help you leave.  There are over 200 active applications in HR.  Those people know exactly what it is like here, and they want our jobs.”   While there has been improvement since and many changes in administration, some of those same suits are still there. I’m sure those are the suits that wanted my manager to respond to the article.

I do the majority of the precepting on my unit.  I’ve probably acted, said, or thought most of that essay, yet I consistently receive positive feedback from orientees and my manager.  Nursing students hired onto our floor regularly request me as their preceptor.

I’m doing something right.

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