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Now that you have earned your degree(s) and are beginning your nursing career or taking a new job, transitioning to floor nursing can be difficult in the first year. For many newbies, it can take two to three years to become competent at a new job, and a year just to begin feeling comfortable on your own. Following these three tips can help you make your first year on the floor a successful one!

1. Show What You Can Learn.

Our natural tendency when starting a new job is to show others what we already know. That isn’t necessarily wrong, but it’s best to show others what we can learn. Our demonstrated ability to learn will set us up for success both right away and in the future. As your preceptors and colleagues see you picking up on skills quickly, using critical thinking during complicated situations, and being a team player, they will be excited to work alongside you.

2. Ask Questions.

When we think we know all the answers, you often miss out on the most important details. Asking questions can help you avoid this. Asking your coworkers for feedback or if you missed anything shows diligence, determination, and wisdom. It might not be long before people are asking you if they missed anything!

3. Investigate Anything You Don’t Know.

In nursing, you must deal with many different diseases, diagnoses, treatments, medications, therapies, and other matters. Keeping track of all these details can be overwhelming at times; therefore, if you are unfamiliar with a treatment or disease process, investigate it. Google it. Research it. Ask a colleague. Familiarize yourself with whatever you don’t know.

Add these tips to your skill set and you will be ready to succeed during your first year as a floor nurse in no time.

Got a tip you would like to share? Let us know what has worked for you in the comments!

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Tyler Faust, MSN, RN

Tyler Faust obtained his BSN from Winona State University and a Master's degree in Nursing and Organizational Leadership from Winona State University. He has worked at Mayo Clinic for the past 6 years and is in the process of transitioning from a staff nurse to a nurse manager. Tyler is passionate about professional development, nursing leadership, and strategic thinking.
Tyler Faust, MSN, RN

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