It would be hard to disagree with the idea that nursing is a demanding yet ultimately incredibly satisfying professional. Compared to other jobs, it’s not at all easy, and that difficultly begins right at the start with the study involved and goes on throughout the work, but those who see nursing as their calling don’t mind. In fact, they thrive on the idea that their work is tough but ultimately crucial, and the fact they are making incredible, positive differences in people’s lives spurs them on.
Of course, if you are going to be a nurse, you need to have certain qualities and personality traits. If you are going to be a great nurse, you need even more. Read on to find out what they are, and see if you are suited to the nursing profession.
First and foremost, a nurse always works hard. There is no time for slacking or only putting in half the effort needed; lives are at stake, and even in less serious cases, the patient’s comfort is at risk. A nurse has to be completely dedicated and extremely hard-working, even when they are very tired at the end of a long shift and have barely taken a break. If you want a career that pushes you and challenges you, then nursing might be just the right choice.
The hard work starts as soon as you sign up for a nursing course. Whether it’s something you do straight out of high school in a traditional college or you choose to switch to nursing later in life and take on accelerated BSN programs online, you will need to study hard and dedicate yourself to what you are doing. If you can do this when studying, you know you can do it for the rest of your career too.
High Standards Of Professionalism
A great nurse will always have the highest standards of professionalism in whatever they are doing. They will display the same professionalism, whether they are seeing to a patient’s dressing, changing their clothing, washing them, checking their charts, administering medication, making a bed, or even if they are in an OR and they are assisting a procedure. For a great nurse, it won’t make any difference what they are doing; every single aspect of their work is going to be met with the same great professionalism as every other.
When you are a nurse, you are going to be meeting with patients from a variety of different backgrounds, ages, genders, and with many different illnesses or complaints. A professional nurse is never going to make any assumptions, and they certainly won’t judge. They will be there to help whoever needs their help, and everything else is secondary. Even if the patient seems to be a person with whom you wouldn’t normally spend time, as a nurse, you need to treat them no matter what.
This level of professionalism can be hard to maintain, but a great nurse will always do it, whatever the situation.
As we’ve mentioned above, nurses are very hard-working people. Because of this, their absolute diligence is crucial, and it’s what sets a great nurse apart from all the rest. They need to be aware of everything that is going on around them, especially as they will generally be responsible for a number of different patients all at one time, possibly for a number of different doctors. Being able to answer the questions put to them and know exactly what is happening at any one time is what makes a great nurse.
This kind of diligence is something that will take time to master, and it is the product of many years of experience. That said, anyone who wants to become a nurse is going to still need to be meticulous when it comes to details if they are going to get very far in their chosen profession.
Exceptional Communication Skills
There are so many important traits that a great nurse needs to have that picking the top one is an impossible task. Communication skills, however, are certainly near the top of the list when it comes to what is required.
There is no choice in the matter; communication skills are an absolute necessity if you are going to be a great nurse. Those nurses who are less communicative due to shyness or an inability to put themselves to the front of any situation may still do fine, but they won’t rise through the ranks like a nurse who can truly communicate will.
Nurses must be able to communicate with a variety of different people. They need to be able to allay patients’ fears, and they need to be able to pass on information to doctors and other healthcare professionals. They also need to be able to help their patients’ families, explaining what is happening in simple terms. Being able to distill information down into an easy-to-understand form one minute, taking on the role of a comforter then next, and then talking to a doctor using medical terms is not easy, but as a great nurse, it’s something that needs to be done.
Something that goes hand in hand with having excellent communication skills is excellent interpersonal skills, and a great nurse must have both. Nurses are the ultimate link between doctors and their patients, and they are therefore relied on by both parties to give accurate information and be a conduit between people.
Nurses must also be able to work with anyone and everyone in order to maintain a level of professionalism and a feeling of comfort and safety within the hospital or clinic setting.
Interpersonal skills aren’t easy to master for some people, whereas others are able to make friends quickly and be pleasant and polite to everyone around them. Due to their compassion and ease of being around people, these are the people who will make great nurses. It will shine through and make the experience a better one for all involved.