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Starting at your first office

I am beginning my first career at a small private office. Was wondering how everyone else’s first day on the job compares. There is a new computer system I am getting used to. I manage to schedule my own appointments when I am not far behind. My first full day I walked out 30 minutes late. The dr and the other hygienist both left.
Now I hold myself to a high expectation. I want to make sure the doctor is satisfied with my work. I fell behind on charting and my notes because I still feel uncomfortable with the computer system. How do you go about feeling comfortable in your office and keeping the team happy by staying on time as a newbie?



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1 Answer

First and foremost, a big congratulations on landing your first job! Feeling comfortable in a new office is simply a matter of time. I’m very impatient and somewhat of a perfectionist, so this has always been hard for me. I wanted to be perfect right from the start, much like it sounds you do! Be patient with yourself and don’t be too hard on yourself while you are learning. It may take a couple months for you to feel secure. After everyday though, you will notice that you are finding your routine and things are running smoother and more on time. Give yourself a good few weeks to feel comfortable with the computer system. It will slowly become like second nature, but again, there’s that having patience thing! In my opinion, on your first day, only being 30 minutes behind isn’t too shabby! However, it is kind of icky that someone didn’t stay to make sure you didn’t have any questions. On the topic of questions, don’t be afraid to ask them! This is how you learn; it also shows the team you are making an honest effort to be a part of the team. Also, let’s say you need to know where something is in the office – instead of asking someone to go get it for you, ask where it is located and get it yourself. This shows you are trying to learn and that you are self-sufficient to boot. I like to recommend learning the “sterile routine” as soon as possible because being able to throw in a helping hand when you can by sterilizing instruments is a help to all. If you are up for constructive criticism, ask your doctor or co-workers how you are doing; like if there’s something you should change or aren’t doing quite right (how the office likes it), or even if they have any tips with the computer or how to be more efficient. In turn, your co-workers should be patient with you. They have been new before too and should remember it takes time. If you are showing honest effort in your learning and getting comfortable in your routine the team should be happy.

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