This has been the week of meetings for me. On Wednesday morning (after working 12 hours), we had a town hall meeting to go to. Now in the nearly 5 years I worked at my other hospital, I had gone to the town hall meetings ZERO times. Yep, that's right. I had no desire whatsoever to hear what the administrators had to say...because it's typical b.s.
This time I was inspired to go to my first town hall meeting at the new hospital....inspired why? Because of it being mandatory. I can't get into trouble this quickly on the job...so me & my fellow co-workers ventured into the conference room for the first time hoping it would be over quickly so I could rush home & get some sleep.
I was pleasantly surprised....greeted by happy, smiling faces. The theme was baseball oriented & they were dressed as though they were on a baseball team.....even had some admin dressed up handing out crackerjacks & leading us into doing the wave. Wow! All this at 7:30 in the morning. They also gave us breakfast & these "clapper" type gadgets so we could make as much noise as we wanted. I could quickly tell that these were fun people....not just people pretending to have fun. And I was amazed at how quickly that fun feeling spread.
I work for a religious hospital and while I do not consider myself to be religious all that much, I do consider myself to be spiritual. With that being said, as much as I find it odd that my workplace stops often to say a group prayer....I feel embraced by the feeling of God all around us. I am glad to have this religious influence in my life. Our motto is to extend the healing ministry of Christ...the skill to heal, the spirit to care. It is an inspiration.
If I'm losing you, I apologize...but I need to write this out so I can look back & remember the difference.
The hospital I quit is within the same exact organization as the hospital I am at now. Their motto is the same.....both hospitals advertise pretty much under the same name. Now when the adminstrator at this meeting started talking...it was the first time I had ever seen or heard him. And while the first 10 min of listening to him talk, I'll admit....I was sitting there wondering how someone around my age could be so high up in administration. As he spoke about this hospital....about all it has going for itself, and the videos they showed & him saying "people tell me there is something different about this place, there is an energy here like no other"....I was doubtful...at first. The more he talked, the more I was proud of where I now work. The more he spoke, I realized how just down to earth he was.....he didn't think he was better than any of us (as opposed to the admin from the previous hospital who always thought they were on top while nurses were at the bottom of the barrel). When he went on to not just mention all that was going on within the hospital...they had banners posted for every single department with at least 10 positive things going on in every dept. And when we walked out the door that morning...they were handing us ice cream & t-shirts (hey, we're easily influenced, what can I say?)....I felt really good and somewhat disappointed in myself for dreading having to go to that meeting in the first place.
As I came into work that night, it was still ringing in my mind about how things are different here. It's the little things...people helping people, no arguing between departments, everyone working together to get the job done. It was finally clicking. I have been at this new job now for 6 weeks. It has flown by & not for one minute have I had any problem communicating with anyone or any other department. Something is different there....things work & it's not just by luck or magic....it's because something is different there. They don't just say what they mean, they mean what they say. Nothing is b.s. or tell them what they want to hear...they truly care about patient satisfaction AND employee satisfaction. They don't sit around trying to figure out how to pinch a penny or how to find ways to make the staff feel overwhelmed & overworked. They are so proactive that it isn't even funny. It's refreshing.
The next morning I had a department staff meeting....yet another thing I never looked forward to at my previous hospital. Only because it was blah, blah, this or blah, blah, that. It wasn't about us....it was about more admin b.s. Sure it was an open forum to speak up....but nothing ever changed for the better & that's frustrating. So I went into this meeting somewhat hesitant and went out feeling quite relaxed. This department has multiple staff meeting times during the week....because they know we are busy & they try to have multiple meeting times so that hopefully one of the meetings times will work out for each & every one of us.
We had maybe 10 people at this meeting...small, but more intimate. More personal. We were informed that our floor is about to be renovated. Amazing considering the economy. They are moving us to another floor for about 4 months while they invest hundreds of thousands of dollars into making our floor look brand new & updating the rooms. We got to see another floor that had the renovation done & I am excited. This is what I mean...they want the patients to be happy...they want the staff to be happy. My manager said that administration pretty much gets us anything she asks....because they know we need the equipment/supplies to get the job done properly. And a job well done is a job that makes most patients happy.
It's refreshing to see how things are supposed to be. It's not just a dream. I feel like I left an abusive relationship and have found something so good, so rewarding....but in the back of my mind I'm thinking it's too good to be true. Any minute now the reality will hit. Well, I've decided if it does, it does...but I'm not going to worry about it. I'm going to enjoy the feeling I have right now when it comes to work. I went in last night and my floor was preparing for "fun Friday." They just started doing this once a month.....they pick a theme, decorate, provide food & get into the theme for the day. Today it was a Hawaiian Luau.
They went all out on the decorating...in fact, I think they were even planning on giving lei's to the patients to include them in on the theme. Everyone was smiling, having fun...working together. This is how it's supposed to be...especially in healthcare when there are a lot of stressful situations. You have to bond with your co-workers in order to survive. And you need the managers and administrators working with you to accomplish this. This hospital has it figured out. Communication is wide open & everyone works together.
Now the last meeting I had was this morning....it was to review the PCU/ICU test and the EKG/ACLS test from a couple of weeks ago. I got a 90 on the PCU/ICU test....highest score among the new hires. Woo hoo...go me! However, my score of 73 on EKG/ACLS wasn't good enough & I have to do some computer based learning modules. All of the new hires have to do them. I somewhat disagree because I don't believe that basic EKG analysis includes rhythm strips such as accelerated idioventricular or paroxysmal junctional tachycardia. That sounds a lot more than basic to me...but oh well. What doesn't kill me makes me stronger, right?
I have plenty more to write as I haven't posted about my patients in the last 2 weeks. I will try to catch up with that over the weekend. It has been an adventure to say the least.
I did manage to find the time to visit my old hospital. Myself and another nurse that left with me went up there last Saturday night. Nothing has changed. While it was a quiet, calm night....we heard nurses arguing with pharmacy and another nurse had to transport her patient for a CT scan & it was 1 am. They hired agency and a lot of new grads. Weird to go back after only 6 weeks & not recognize nearly half the people that were working that night. We were told that they are now thinking of offering part-time or per diem to those that are thinking of leaving or have left...in fact, there was someone else that just left & they were hoping to get her to stay part-time by offering her that. We were asked if we would come back on a part-time basis. Nope. Nothing has changed. The reasons we left are still the same. I miss my co-workers, but not enough to go back to working under those conditions. Not after seeing how it doesn't have to be that way.
It feels good to be proud of where I work. While I still dread having to work 40 hours a week, at least it's a good place to work.
Have a good weekend everyone!