Being a nurse is something that appeals to many people for a variety of reasons. The biggest reason that many people cite for becoming a nurse is the rewarding aspect of the career. There aren’t many other jobs in which you can truly make a difference in someone’s life, and perhaps even save lives, other than nursing. 

Although nursing is wondering, it is also challenging, and those who accept that challenge should be aware that the obstacles and puzzles they will face won’t just come from the patient care aspect of what they do, but also because of the career development prospects they have. It might surprise you to find that there are a great many career options when you are a nurse, and if you have the right experience and qualifications, you can go as far as you could ever want and become a leader. 

However, there are certain steps you’ll need to take to ensure this happens, if you have ambitions within your nursing career. Read on to discover how you can find career success in nursing; there is a lot to think about, but if you’re prepared, you can move forward when you’re ready to do so. 

Ask Questions

There are always new ideas and development coming forth in the medical arena, and nursing will specifically benefit from these a lot of the time. However, when things change and there are new ways of working or taking care of a certain ailment, for example, it can get confusing. This is why, if you’re not sure of anything, it’s always best to ask questions. It’s far better to acknowledge that you are lacking in some areas of expertise or information and ask – thus improving your knowledge for the future, and ensuring that you bypass any potential mistakes that could, when you are working in the medical profession, by very dangerous. 

Everyone forgets things from time to time, especially when there is so much information to remember. Again, even if the procedure you’re doing is not new to you, if you’re unsure about anything it’s better to ask than to try to work it out by yourself. This is not true of all careers – some encourage experimentation and innovation – but when you are a nurse things are different, which is why asking questions is crucial. This will help you in your career as you’ll gain more and more knowledge, but you’ll also be more willing to answer other people’s questions as you’ll know how important it is, and that is something employers will be impressed by. 

Support Your Team Members

Nursing requires you to have a lot of knowledge and to work autonomously in some situations. However, it’s also a job that is very much focused on teamwork – you’ll need to be able to collaborate with your colleagues to ensure the very best patient care. 

In order to help you not only work well now but to enhance your career in the future, it’s important that you support your colleagues as much as you can. We’ve already talked about asking and answering questions, and this is certainly part of that support. However, there are more things you can do to ensure that the entire team is working seamlessly together. 

Some ideas include:

  • Taking on extra shifts
  • Offering help without being asked
  • Ensuring your colleagues’ wellbeing is good 
  • Being purposeful in your work and not making things hard for others 

Although there will be team leaders whose job it is to take care of the overall wellbeing of your team, if everyone can help in their own way to make the workplace a better one to be in, then the nursing work that takes places there will be much more cohesive, and patients will receive excellent care. 

In terms of how supporting your team members will improve your career prospects, any potential employer will want to know that you are a team player, since this is such a crucial part of the nursing profession. They will also want to know that you have good leadership capabilities, especially if this the kind of role you are applying for. By taking care of colleagues, you can show both sides of yourself. 

Take Your Time

When you start nursing, you might be excited about all the different career paths you can take. There are so many options when it comes to nursing, and whether you choose a specific department, a certain type of nursing, or you want to be a generalist and work in many different areas, that excitement about where you could go and what you could do can be problematic. It’s great to have passion, but it’s better to take your time about your career

Of course, you can’t take forever to make a choice if you do want to specialize in something; you’ll need to get started at some point. However, there is no need to rush. If it takes you a few more years to be sure of what you want to do or to try out different ideas before settling on something, that’s far better than rushing towards a type of nursing or a department that, when you start working, doesn’t actually suit you. When you take your time you can weigh up all the pros and cons and ensure you’re making the right choice. 

You can also look into exactly what is required to get where you want to go, and make a plan to follow. Again, this will take more time, but once you have that plan and it takes you to a place you know you’re going to thrive in, you can start seriously advancing your career, and you’ll soon catch up. 

Take Learning Seriously

As we’ve mentioned above, the world of healthcare changes almost constantly as new techniques and medical advancements are made. This means that the world of nursing will also be changing, and what you were taught when you did your initial nursing degree might be different a few years – or even a few months – later.

With this in mind, it’s crucial that, if you want to find career success as a nurse, you take your learning seriously. You can’t just have the knowledge you learned in your degree and any experience you have picked up by being a nurse, as this is not going to be enough to help you move forward far enough, especially when you consider how much competition there is for nursing positions at higher levels. 

There are multiple ways to learn, and as a nurse, it’s important to think about all of them, and not just the ones that are easiest for you. Journals and online blogs are great, and conferences are also a good idea. However, so is networking and finding a mentor. What’s even better is gaining additional qualifications.

Take a look at the Uindy online nursing programs and you’ll see there are many to choose from, whether you’re just starting out or you want to advance your career through the University of Indianapolis. An online degree is a good idea as you can work at a speed that suits you best, meaning you don’t have to rush (which we’ve already seen is a bad idea when you’re a nurse) and you don’t have to compromise and either give up on your educational dreams or stop working to follow them. 

Don’t forget that as well as gaining crucial knowledge, these degrees will give you qualifications that will be vital when you want to advance your career. There are many nursing positions that simply won’t be open to you if you don’t have these certifications in place. 

Become More Organized

Some people are very organized, and others are less so. You might think this is just your personality, and there isn’t a lot that can be done about it, but if you want to succeed as a nurse and be as good as you can be, this is not the right way to think – in fact, the right way to think is to learn how to become more organized and ensure you use those organizational skills to progress your career and help your patients as much as possible. 

A good way to start is to look for any apps or other tools that can help you organize your schedule. The more you do this, the more organization will become second nature, and you’ll be able to allocate enough time and resources to every aspect of your nursing career, as well as in other areas of your life. 

Eat Well And Hydrate

Something that many people won’t think of when they are considering how to find career success as a nurse is their eating and drinking habits. After all, surely it’s all about your knowledge and experience when it comes to career progression. 

The truth is that although these things are crucial, if you’re not taking good care of yourself at the same time, you’ll never be able to take care of your patients with one hundred percent dedication and focus. Make sure you hydrate well throughout the day and that you have a full meal before you leave for work. Snacks are also useful, as they can keep your energy levels up until mealtime.