Healthcare is constantly evolving. Therefore, nurses are familiar with change, flexibility, and being a life-long learner. Nurses have a wide range of opportunities available for them if they are able to take up new skills and apply themselves. These 5 new skills for nurses to explore in the new decade will have them prepared to take on the various challenges that are soon to come.
1. Self-Care Skills
As 2020 continues to unfold, one thing is clear – we all need to be able to take care of ourselves no matter what global and domestic events are thrown at us. Nurses, in particular, may have great difficulty with embracing self-care due to their heavy workload.
However, it is important that nurses are prepared to take care of themselves before they take care of others which takes time, effort, and self-reflection. Some ways to go about this is starting to engage in stress-relieving strategies at work, practicing well-researched coping strategies, and using days off wisely to look within and recharge.
2. Advocacy Skills
Policies, laws, and regulations influence our world greatly. What happens in government offices can change the fate of people all across the globe. Nurses have first hand experience on the health and well-being of their community. With this insight, they are able to anticipate how policies, laws, resources, etc. can influence others. Building advocacy skills takes time and requires listening, participating, and being involved. Some ways that nurses can build their advocacy skills include:
- Identify any public health concerns in your community and research what is being done about it
- Join a professional association and become involved as a volunteer
- Get to know what political officials represent you and your neighborhood
- Write about your experience as a nurse and share on social media, blogs, with political officials, etc.
3. Technology Skills
It is no surprise that technology is 1 of the 5 skills that every nurse should explore in this decade. Technology has taken over the healthcare system through electronic health records, clinical information systems, Telehealth, medical devices, mobile apps, and more.
Fortunately, technology can improve efficiency and expand the reach of healthcare services. Nurses who expect to work within the decade need to be up to date on these various technological platforms and devices in order to better serve others and expand their career options. Nurses can do this by starting off with continuing education classes.
Specializing comes with a lot of benefits such as increased competence, better pay, and often a team of like minded individuals. There is new research coming out every day about the various illnesses that humans are facing and the various ways to overcome them.
With all of this research and best practices, it is important that nurses are well-informed. Specializing allows nurses to focus on one area in order to provide better care to their patients. Nurses can specialize informally by dedicating a long period of time to a specific unit or department, or they can earn certifications.
5. Entrepreneurial Skills
Nurses have a unique set of skills that allow them to be successful inside and outside of the healthcare system. Due to this, many nurses have pivoted from working in healthcare to being entrepreneurs. Some nurse entrepreneurs continue to provide health related services.
This includes V. Yvette Cheeks MSN, RN, the owner of a continuing education nursing company and Racey L. Wolfman, owns an adult day care program. On the other hand, nurses often pivot a little further and explore something completely new. For example, Renee Baldom is a registered nurse and owns Unlimited Potential, a skincare studio. While Eleanor Sullivan RN, writes mystery novels.
The point is, nurses know what hard work, patience, and perseverance looks like. These are the skills that make successful entrepreneurs. It is no wonder, then, why so many nurses are able to flourish in all sorts of paths outside of the traditional nurse role in the healthcare system. Nurses would benefit from exploring skills that would help them transition to being an entrepreneur. These skills might include:
- Creative thinking
- Organization and time management
- Risk taking
- Business storytelling
What skills will you work on within the next decade? Let us know in the comments below!