Finding Your Place as a Travel Nurse: How to Adjust to New Facilities
Even if you are a “human”, it can be difficult to adapt to a new clinical environment. However, there are strategies you can use to build good relationships with your team members and settle down quickly.
Read tips for adapting to new facilities and colleagues as a travel nurse.
Day One: Be Observant and Optimistic
The first step in adapting to the new environment is to recognize the shared dynamics that are occurring among employees in new roles. The staff may have been overwhelmed before arrival. They probably had a heavier workload than usual and felt that something needed to be changed.
Talk to your peers about the unit and be aware of communication strategies that seem to be successful at first glance. Some staff is grateful for the additional support on the floor, while others may take longer to warm up. The process of re-stabilization takes time.
Maintain a positive attitude regardless of how you are received! It’s critical to approach a new project with an open mind and confidence in your abilities as a professional. Your positive energy will be picked up by your coworkers.
Take the Initiative
Professional development may include the acquisition of new charting software and technical skills. The extra effort to learn new skills and quickly get used to inside and outside the new facility will be rewarded in the long run. Needless to say, colleagues appreciate your sense of initiative.
When you’re calm, make a note of what you think is difficult or stressful. This will help you prepare and manage your time wisely as you settle into your new role.
Focus on learning about your peers and engaging in positive social interactions as often as possible. Do they go out for drinks and dinner on the weekends? Do they participate in recreational sports leagues? Finding colleagues with similar interests stimulates trust and compassion.
Find a nurse who is willing to take you under their wing and help you succeed if at all possible. Finding someone patient and willing to answer your questions will be an invaluable resource as you adjust to your new role. Even if you can’t connect with a single person, don’t be afraid to inquire. It is more important than anything else to do your job well.
When adjusting, remember to be connected to the process of trying new things. You can control your actions, but you cannot control the reactions of others. When things go well, you will be happy to put yourself there. If the reality is not what you expected, you can use more information to reassess and retry the situation. That is all part of the upbringing.
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