Being a nurse is a job that requires a lot of commitment. Nurses take care of patients, work with the management, and are tasked with sending crucial information to patients’ loved ones about their health. As a nurse, you must possess the medical knowledge necessary to offer the best patient care and equip yourself with skills to help you perform your job.
To be a great nurse, besides having specialized skills to perform clinical tasks, you need to understand the importance of having skills like communication or teamwork. These skills help you get better at your job and are crucial to your professional success. In addition, arming yourself with the right skills helps you stand out as the best candidate to the recruiters and managers.
On that note, here are six crucial skills every nurse needs to be great at the job.
- Leadership Skills
As a nurse, you must have leadership skills to work as a team, particularly in a power position. Without leadership skills, every nurse would carry on with their jobs separately, missing critical opportunities for communication, learning, and growth. In addition, having leadership skills allows you to bring the team together, improving coordination and avoiding confusion.
But how can you acquire the right leadership skills? First, you can look for different programs or degrees like there is online bechlor of science in nursing; there other degrees to further your education and improve your leadership skills and prepare for future leadership roles. Besides that, you can enhance your leadership skills by participating in decision-making. Efficient, effective, and clear decision-making will contribute to a more organized and direction-driven team, improving patient care.
Adaptability is something every nurse is expected to bring to the job. Learning to be more adaptable allows you to become better equipped to react when a challenge arises. Every healthcare sector needs a nurse who fits within the existing work environment and welcomes changes, making it vital to learn the art of adaptability. In addition, as a nurse, you need to be strong and able to handle a lot.
You can start being more adaptable by observing others. Understanding how others think and react in specific scenarios helps you prepare a more innovative and effective response. Advanced preparation enables you to adapt to sudden challenges and problems quickly. Moreover, consider asking questions. When significant changes occur at work, such as restructuring or changing the computer system, some confusion is understandable, and asking questions can help you adapt faster.
- Communication Skills
As frontline medical providers, nurses depend on communication for all aspects of their jobs. Effective communication skills are necessary to improve patient care outcomes, foster relationships with co-workers, and handle complex situations. As a nurse, you constantly learn about your patient’s needs, concerns, and health issues with the help of communication, making it essential to have communication skills. In addition, making efforts to communicate effectively with patients affects the accuracy of diagnoses.
To instill communication skills, you need to be a good listener. Make sure you pay attention to what your patients or co-workers are saying. Look at the speaker and protect yourself from any distractions. Moreover, you can use your body language to show you’re listening.
Nurses are usually defined by the fact they continuously have their hands full. As a nurse, you have to manage multiple patients simultaneously, ensure all necessary paperwork is submitted, and perform various clinical procedures. As a result, unless you can multitask effectively, you might likely trip yourself up, making your job a lot harder.
Therefore, for effective multitasking, plan ahead of your time. It is a great way to manage your work and set realistic goals. Moreover, take some time to prioritize your plans and tasks. Before you start, take an overview of your list of tasks and remove anything that isn’t necessary at the moment. Managing a precise and manageable list allows you to save yourself from feeling overwhelmed, giving you time to focus on urgent tasks.
- Time Management
Time management helps you organize and prioritize patients, internal administration tasks, and personal obligations. Even though nursing is a demanding profession, nurses who learn techniques to manage their better can achieve balance in the face of time constraints. As a nurse, learning how to manage your time effectively allows you to see valuable benefits such as:
- Improved efficiency
- Higher productivity levels
- Reduced stress
- Better opportunities for professional development
- More chances to achieve career goals
To ensure you’re managing your time well, consider implementing routinization. It is a tool that will help you maximize your productivity. It consists of repeating what works in your way in a systematic process. Creating a stable routine boosts time management by eliminating unnecessary planning and turning crucial tasks into habits. Besides that, consider showing up to work about 15 minutes early to make it an investment that pays off. In a profession like nursing, anything can happen in a day. Hence, spending a few minutes adjusting can help a lot.
- Critical-thinking Skills
Do you want to provide your patients with better care? If yes, you must realize that developing critical thinking skills is vital. Applying the ability to think over problems and evaluate the knowledge in front of patients allows you to become more effective at your job. In addition, as a nurse, it will enable you to provide more personalized care based on the individual’s unique needs. For instance, knowing that a patient tends to underrate their pain might help you decide better when is the right time to increase their pain management.
To improve your critical thinking skills, be open-minded. Open-mindedness in healthcare shows the willingness to learn from other professionals and gain an overview of others’ experiences. Moreover, avoid judgment. When you do so, you build an atmosphere favorable to excellent communication and the necessary element of critical thinking.
As you have read above, being a nurse requires you to have medical knowledge and develop a skillset. You must have effective communication skills to interact with patients and other nurses. More goes into your job than just technical skills, especially if you are working as a healthcare worker. So, make sure you pay attention to developing these skills to succeed.