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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Key to success as an RT: STOP COMPLAINING

Look, anyone who works knows that any job comes with a boss, and bosses can be hard to deal with at times. It's unfortunate, yet it's the way it is in this life.

Yet regardless of what you might think, the bottom line of any business is profit. It's really all about making money. Surely the industry has to generate a good product, and in the case of hospitals, or RT Departments, the product is good patient care.

Still, the bottom line is money. It is for that reason that RT bosses, and any other boss for that matter, has to be firm and, at times, do things that are unpopular. Of course that doesn't mean they have to be jerks, yet sometimes it may feel that way.

If you do not understand this, if you don't see things from the shoes of someone who is an RT boss, then you will never be anything other than an RT, or if you're in another career, you will never amount to anything other than a peon.

And being a peon is not bad, being a regular, classical worker is not bad. Some of us prefer that. We can go to work and then as soon as we punch out you don't have to think about your work.

Yet from time to time there comes opportunities for us RTs. We have students who need to be mentored. We have research that needs to be done. We have Keystone meetings and other administrative meetings that need to be attended. We have protocols that need to be written. We have nurses who need to be educated on the basics of respiratory therapy, or about a new ventilator. We have hospital policies to write. We have students who need to be taught about the basics of RT therapy.

You see, there are an array of jobs you can do to break up the monotony of the job as RT. There are plenty of opportunities based on your interest. Yet if you want to be chosen to do any of these jobs, you must not be a complainer.

Ah, if you are a complainer, if you constantly complain about the RT bosses and about how sucky this job is, they why would the RT boss choose you to orientate the new employee. They certainly don't want the orientator to be complaining. They most certainly don't want the first impression of the hospital to be from a person who already has apathy and low morale.

So quit complaining. I hate it when people come to me complaining because I was chosen to be on the Keystone meeting, or I was chosen to teach this class or that, or that I was chosen to orientate the new student. The reason I was chosen is because I don't sit around gossipping and complaining all day. I'm not pessimistic about the job.

Plus if you're the type of RT who, as soon as you get your work done, you're out gossiping from department to department, or playing video games, instead of educating yourself, then why would an RT boss choose you to orientate the new worker who just graduated, or the student. If you aren't a thinker, if you don't care to make yourself better, if you don't see to make the department better, if you don't see the big picture, then why would you be chosen for anything?

Plus I don't turn down challenges because "they are too hard," or, "I have too much to do at home." Heck, I have four kids and two toddlers at my house, so if anyone in my department has an excuse not to do anything it's me. Yet I don't make excuses. If the boss provides me with an opportunity I do it.

I love a challenge. I love to teach. I know for a fact others in my department do too. Yet whenever they don't get their way they sit around the department bitching all day. When they turn down challenges because "I don't have time," then why would the RT boss go to that person in the future.

Yes, you guys are all great RTs, yet you need to stop your complaining. It may or may not be true that 80% of what we do is a waste of time or delays time, yet have you ever worked any other job in the world? Have you? If you have (and I have), then you'll notice that they all have that one thing in common with this job. They all have politics. They all have bosses. They all have people to deal with.

If there is a part of this job you hate, have fun with it -- create humor. That's what I do on this blog quite often. Yet I don't sit on this blog writing about how much my job sucks. I don't write about how disrespected RTs are. Respect must be earned. If you sit around playing games on the Internet all night, and complaining between treatments, why would a boss choose you to represent the department? I wouldn't choose you if I were the boss.

Yet I hear it all the time, "Why was I not chosen to do that? You get to do everything." Your a brown noser. My answer to that is: "You get what you reap. You get what you earn. You get what you deserve."

Besides, I'm not a brown noser because I succeed in life. The difference between you guys and me is that I made an effort, and a choice, to do better with my time. I taught myself to make sure the boss liked me by my hard work and determination. It's giving 110% when you're on the task.

It's doing the simple things like being to work on time, and coming into work or trading shifts when the need arises. It's doing the little things that make the bosses job easier, and doing it without sniveling behind his back.

I never said that, yet I'd like to.

Look, there is a lot of burnout in any medical job. We go from slow times to rampantly busy in the thump of a heartbeat. And, yes, there are a lot of procedures we do just to satisfy the desires of someone who knows nothing about the medical field yet makes rules we must follow in order to meet criteria. This results in extra burnout and apathy.

Yet we also work three days a week. I was just discussing with my son the other day. Your job is what you make of it. I don't think I have the best job in the world, yet I do have a pretty good job. I do because I worked hard and went to college. Then I continued to learn even after I was hired. I learn. I write. I continue to find challenges. I have to, because otherwise I think any job would become monotonous.

And another thing about this job that is great is that (and I said this to my son) is you get to see me every day. You get to see me a lot. I work only three days a week. If it's slow at work I can read a book or do something fun on the Internet. Personally, my fun is blogging. My fun is this. Ant then I get to come home and do what I really love to do: spend time with you guys.

So your job is what you make it. Respect must be earned. If you want to succeed as an RT you can still be a complainer, yet if you want to have the respect you think you deserve, then you must act like a professional, suck it up, shut your mouth, do the job you are asked to do, and never turn down a challenge.

Don't be a bellyacher. Try it. Try going a week or a month or a year without complaining, and you'll see respect for you will skyrocket. I know, because I did it. My boss used to hate and disrespect me. Then I stopped complaining. I stopped coming up with excuses. I did because I was smart enough to realize it wasn't getting me anywehre. Hating my boss wasn't getting me anywhere either.

Well, actually, you can still hate your boss if you want to and still get along with him, however that's a bit of a challenge. In one of those books I mentioned above or below the author descirbes the situation where the worker hates the boss. If he walks into the room after thinking how much he hates his boss, this showed up in his demeanor.

Yet if before he walks into the room he thinks something good about his boss, then he will come across as positive and optimistic.

I was smart enough to find a good book on how to succeed in business. I read, "The Magic of thinking Big," by David Schwartz. It's an old book, yet the principles are the same.

Another book is Dale Carnegie's "How to win friends and influence people." Or you can try Leslie T. Giblin's "How to have Confidence and Power in Dealing with People." These books were brilliant for changing the way I looked at myself and my work and the people I associate with.

And after you read those books try reading "Personality Plus" by Florence Littlaur. All these books will help you become better at being you and in dealing with people, and they will help you succeed in everything you do.

You will still be you, yet you can be a better you. It starts with making the CHOICE" to quit complaining. The second thing you need to do is make the CHOICE to make yourself wiser, and the best place to do that is by researching things on the Internet, or by reading books like the ones I listed in this post.

Quite frankly, I don't know how anyone could feel good about himself after a bout of complaining. When I do it I feel guilty as sin. Yet that's just me.

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Anonymous said...

Bravo! RT is a 2nd career for me, but as u write here, "attitude" applies universally. Continue to enjoy your blog immensely. - Kim

Anonymous said...

Great post! You're not only making yourself a better person, but you have influenced and motivated me as well, maybe others who come across your blog.

Secretia Bronchoderm said...

Great post :) I concur completely