Nurses, CNA’s and LPN’s are jacks-of-all-trades; they can do everything from taking your blood pressure to saving your life. But truly successful nurses have an extra set of skills they probably didn’t learn in school:
Savvy nurses network with everyone, from colleagues to administrators to everyone in between. They know that a bright smile and a memorable conversation can lead to unexpected opportunities. A connection at a conference, for example, inspired one nurse to shift gears after five years on an oncology floor and take a position on a mother-baby unit. Today, she is a certified Nurse-Midwife who has helped deliver hundreds of babies.
Nursing is half patients, half paperwork. Nurses with experience know to keep everything – and keep it in order. One LPN suggests keeping hard copies of all her paperwork in a designated folder and take a picture of them to store. You just never know when you’re going to need it.
Knowing their value.
Talented nurses don’t only care for patients, they care for themselves. They own the value of their work and their dedication to professional growth. This isn’t easy for anyone, especially professionals in “helping” professions. But at the end of the day, the person who will advocate best for you is you. When a managerial position opened in her unit, one nurse recognized that her decade of experience made her a great candidate. She overcame her fear, took a shot, and got the job.
Communication and connection. It’s one thing for a nurse to provide basic care. But nurses who are passionate about their work take the time to connect with patients and their families. When a young child was diagnosed with terminal cancer, one of the hospital nurses went above and beyond to care for her and her parents. She provided quiet, loving care, offering the family support and giving them space when they needed it. After the child passed away, the father said at the memorial service, “If you want to see God, go up to the fourth floor of Children’s Hospital and ask for a nurse named Cece.”
Being a successful nurse is about more than just medicine. It’s about being the best possible version of yourself.