The irritating work habits you must nix (or you may lose your job!)


It’s easy enough for organized people to tell the disorganized ones to just manage their time better, but hints and help are much more appropriate, such as:

  • Identify and prioritize your tasks.
  • Write down all you need to do.
  • Organize all the supplies you need for each task before starting.
  • If you keep forgetting one supply or tool, make a list of your tasks and the supplies and tools you need for each one. Keep them in a notebook with you when you’re at work.
  • Ask for help from a more organized nurse.

4. Sloppiness
Nursing is a field where precision is of the utmost importance. There’s no room for error, let alone sloppiness. Sloppiness in charting could mean points against you in a lawsuit down the road or a misunderstanding when someone goes back in the nurses’ notes to check the patient’s progress. Sloppiness in report may mean that the oncoming nurse may not get the full picture of the patient, missing something vital. Sloppiness in doing procedures, such as changing dressings, could result in infections, which can lead to much more serious outcomes. You see, sloppiness can’t be tolerated.

If you believe you fall into the sloppy spectrum, you have to straighten out. Sloppiness is usually due to one of two things: laziness or disorganization. Both can be fixed, but you have to want to work on them.

5. Constantly checking yr email & phn messages @ work
Work is work and your social life shouldn’t be part of it. In facilities where cell phones are banned, don’t hide one in your pocket and check your messages while in a patient’s room or in a supply room. And when using the facility’s computer, use it for work, not personal stuff unless you have explicit permission to do so.

If you absolutely must check messages and emails during your workday, you’ll have to do so during your break. If you can’t take a break, maybe you can speak with your nurse manager to find some mutually agreeable times to do this.

If you only check your messages out of habit, leave your phone in your locker or in your bag. If you don’t have it with you, you won’t be tempted.

Marijke Durning
Marijke is a professional writer who began her working career as a registered nurse over 25 years ago. After working in clinical areas ranging from rehab to intensive care, as a floor nurse to a supervisor, she found she could combine her extensive health knowledge with her love of writing. Although she has been published in a wide variety of publications for professionals and the general public, her passion is writing for the every day person to promote health literacy.

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