After countless, grueling hours of juggling school with the rest of your life, you’ve finished and secured a job… a huge accomplishment indeed!

Starting a new job is stressful. You’re managing relationships with new coworkers, facing a steep learning curve if you are a recent graduate, and learning to navigate a new workplace environment.

Negotiating your compensation package can be a nail-biting, heart-racing all around anxiety-producing experience.  While some of this anxiety might just stem from inexperience with negotiating a contract, you might also be worried about not knowing what to ask for as a new nurse practitioner.

When thinking about compensation and benefit packages, many people think of salary, health insurance, employer-match retirement plans and vacation time. While these fundamental compensatory items are essential and should be negotiated with rigor, there are other non-traditional, but highly valuable benefits Nurse Practitioners should consider asking of their employer prior to signing on the dotted line.

Many times, as a new employee, and especially if you are a new graduate, you will be matched with a mentor to help train you in your new position. Get as much information as possible from your mentor during your designated training time. When formal mentoring ends, seek out informal mentors such as more seasoned nurses or NPs. This will help you as you have questions day to day ultimately helping you grow your skill set.

You always want to be known as a team player on the job. You will be working with many other providers and hospital or clinic employees from those working in housekeeping to phlebotomists, physicians, and hospital higher-ups. Get to know your co-workers on all rungs of the corporate ladder. Help out in difficult situations even if it means going above and beyond. In the future they will do the same for you.

Being observant and watching how experts in your unit interact with patients and other colleagues is necessary.  Observing others makes you more knowledgeable and gives you a wide range of provider’s perspectives to draw from. Learn how your colleagues arrive at the decisions they make and handle the day to day tasks and stressors of their jobs.

Any job can be overwhelming at times, especially a new position. When you start a new nursing or NP job, you may feel lost. You need time and training to adjust to your new responsibilities and to feel adept in your work. Give yourself a chance! Make it a goal to overcome one new struggle each day and learn as much as possible. It will get better.