Nursing is a profession that is currently in high-demand. It is challenging, yet rewarding. It is ideal for someone who is compassionate and genuinely devoted to helping others. Nursing is like most other careers because there are a plethora of opportunities to advance. It only makes sense for nurses who are wholeheartedly invested in their careers to seek advancement opportunities. The good news about advancing in the nursing profession is a nurse does not just have to wait year after year for their superiors to handpick them to for a promotion or a raise. There are many was a nurse can advance his/her career that are in his/her locus of control.
Continue Their Education
The more education a nurse possesses, the more potential he/she possesses to advance in his/her career. Pursuing the next degree level such as a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and even a Doctorate of Philosophy in Nursing (Ph.D) is the best way a nurse can open more doors for himself/herself. In addition, a nurse can also pursue various certifications to further his/her education such as the School Nurse Certificate, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, Certified Case Manager (CCM), and Aids Certified RN (ACRN).
Many nurses may want to advance their education, but they may be intimidated by the idea of squeezing school into their hectic work and family schedule. In modern day, a working nurse can easily advance his/her education through an online nursing degree. A nurse can advance his/her education on his or her own schedule around work and family commitments and from anywhere in the world where he/she has internet access.
Specialize in a Particular Area
A nurse can specialize in an area such as hematology, psychiatric care, labor and delivery, and geriatric care. Choosing a specialization can help a nurse have higher job satisfaction because he/she is focusing in a particular area of his/her interest, which will help him/her render superior care to their patients. A specialization can make a nurse more appealing to prospective employers and promotable to current employers, which will thus increase his/her earnings overtime.
Network and Building Connections
Being involved in a networks helps nurses learn because they are constantly sharing and exchanging strategies, ideas, and experiences. Networking plays an integral role in a nurse developing new problem-solving stratagems. This can be done through networks such as Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society, American Nurses Association, individual state’s nursing association, and a network of colleagues. A nurse can even start his/her own network. This network can be in-person such as conferences, reading groups, and workshops or an online social network such as a Facebook group, Facebook page Twitter Page, blog, webinar, or an online nursing degree discussion board.
The saying, “It’s not always what you know; it’s sometimes who you know” applies to the nursing profession, just as it applies to most other professions. Being connected to the right people in the network can help a person snag excellent job opportunities and become a viable candidate for promotions and raises. It is not total nepotism because the nurse will receive mentorship from those in his/her network.
Be Ethical and Professional
Ethics and professionalism are essential in every profession and area of life. However, a nurse should possess a higher standard of ethics and professionalism because he/she has people’s health and lives in his/her hands. The qualities of an ethical and professional nurse are following HIPPA guidelines, keeping patient information confidential, being honest with a patient, being respectful to all patients, being appropriately personable, and being enthusiastic about work. Ethics and professionalism also go beyond the workplace such as a assuring social media posts are appropriate and not connecting with patients on social media. A nurse who makes every effort to be ethical and professional and has an unsullied reputation will make a favorable impression to employers, patients, and patients’ families. A nurse’s job is all about his/her patients, and he/she should behave in a manner that values that philosophy above all else.
Enhance Their Technology Skills
Technology is constantly revolutionizing every aspect of the human race, especially careers and jobs. It is imperative for a nurse to always stay up-to-date with the current technology. Even if he/she is not tech savvy, he/she should at least make an effort to enhance their technology skills. This will show employers, co-workers, patients, and patients’ families that he/she is committed to their work and is competent to independently carry out the vast majority of tasks in which he/she is assigned. Not learning current technology and then being faced with current technology is like a person learning to fly an airplane when he/she has not even mastered driving an automobile. Learning technology will make the nurse’s job easier because if he/she does not master current technology, it will be even difficult to master future technology when he/she absolutely will have to learn it.
Nursing: A Noble Profession
Nursing is a noble profession because it is all about helping people and improving their lives. Job satisfaction directly correlates to job performance. A nurse can greatly increases his/her chances of job satisfaction if he/she puts the effort into advancing his/her career by continuing their education, specializing, networking, being ethical, and enhancing their technology skills. The effort will be worth the rewards of superior job opportunities and wages.