Nursing is a dynamic, ever-changing profession. As a nurse, that’s probably one of the things that attracted you in the first place. You’ve already achieved a lot: you earned your Bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN), got your first registered nurse (RN) employment, and made a difference in the lives of millions of patients. Now, you are hoping to take your career to new heights and make an even bigger impact because you have obtained some valuable life experience till now.
Even recent graduates may feel pressured to stay updated on new methods, technology, and treatments. All successful nurses have a few characteristics in common. Experts agree that a few advanced skills can help you advance your career and help you achieve your goals of becoming the best nurse. You may be wondering what skills you’ll need in the coming years to succeed and stay updated in your nursing field. Here are five critical skills to help you advance in your nursing profession.
1. Acquire A Specialized Certificate
Nursing, unlike other healthcare professions, enables you to change specializations at any time during your career. Narrowing down your focus can help you gain more experience and concentrate on the aspects of your profession that you enjoy the most. Certification in your desired specialty, especially if obtained through a renowned organization, can help you advance your career. Professional development is critical in the healthcare field. Registered nurses must be able to keep up with the always changing and evolving profession.
Enrolling in an online certificate program allows you to get your degree in a convenient and time-efficient manner that fits your busy work schedule and is appropriate for the post-covid world also. There are numerous advantages to earning a post master’s certificate online. Professionals with a master’s degree, for example, can use this certificate to quickly develop their abilities, knowledge, and industry expertise. Plus, an online course allows you to manage other responsibilities along with your studies.
2. Seek Out A Nurse Mentorship
Nurses face difficult challenges daily that the normal 9-5 employee does not truly understand. Finding someone with whom you can discuss, seek advice, and learn can be beneficial in your professional life. As you begin your nursing career, having a role model or even just someone to pass on their knowledge can be really valuable. Nothing can replace the real-world experience of a more skilled fellow employee, and it’s not something that can be learned from a syllabus. Many healthcare institutions pair young and experienced individuals from the beginning, but if this isn’t the case at your organization, don’t worry.
If you would like to become a mentee, you should first find someone with whom you feel most at ease. It is not advisable to seek mentorship from someone with whom you work directly or report. Don’t be scared to seek nursing career advice and assistance from a more experienced, successful colleague; they will be impressed by your drive and pleased by your approach.
3. Join A Nursing Association
Joining a professional nursing group will help you meet new people outside of your existing colleagues and contacts from nursing school. These are the kinds of people who can get you in touch with an advanced practice nurse to observe or a nursing mentor.
Nurses who are members of professional organizations may be invited to nursing conferences or receive discounts on continuing education programs. Seminars and conferences allow you to learn from experts and interact with other professionals from different organizations who share a common interest. Members may also get access to job placement aid and other career resources. With over 100 national nursing organizations to choose from, you’re sure to find one that’s suitable for you.
4. Make Technology Your Friend
While novice nurses may lack years of direct patient care experience, they are typically technologically proficient. Senior nurses who did not grow up in a technologically advanced society have a harder time than those who did. Technology is an important component of modern nursing, with apps that help nurses figure out prescription dosages as well as websites that give patients access to electronic health records.
Technology is transforming the way we operate, and it will continue to change how nurses work in the future. The advantages of incorporating technology are significant. Rather than making the time-consuming trip to the ER in an emergency, a specialist may soon be able to save valuable minutes by initially inspecting a patient virtually using monitors and even robotic instruments. Nurses will have to learn how to work in this new environment and practice with technology to obtain a strong understanding. Whether it’s accessing patient records or learning a new drug scanning software, technology will improve your workload and allow you to take better care of your patients.
5. Use Effective Communication Skills
It takes time and effort to improve one’s communication skills. Effective communication with patients and their loved ones is an important part of providing the best care as a nurse. Nurses must be excellent listeners. They must be focused, not distracted, and present in the moment. When caregivers are preoccupied or rushed, patients and families may sense it. Be gentle with yourself as you progress through the learning process. Nurses may be outspoken when it comes to their patient’s interests, but not when it comes to their own.
Nurses should think about the future not only in terms of improving their ability to communicate effectively but also in terms of paying attention to both patients and colleagues without passing judgment so that everyone may work together to reach the ideal possible result. Be kind, cheerful, and self-aware, and practice being a clear and effective communicator by listening carefully to others. These abilities will help you succeed and will provide you the opportunity to advance in your job.
When it comes to the skills that nurses need to succeed, some are easier to learn than others. To succeed as a nurse, you must adapt, which includes creating opportunities for yourself. Your managers will notice if you put effort into yourself and your job. When you combine that with your dedication to your study, you’ll be on your way to the highest position.