6 ways you can advance in your current role

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5 productivity tools and tricks for nurses

You don’t always have to change roles to further your career

You’re happy being a bedside nurse. You enjoy interacting with your patients, but you wonder if you should be doing something to advance your career, like getting another degree or moving into a different role.

What you need is a way to advance without getting away from the bedside or changing positions. Nursefocus.org, part of the American Nurses Association, has some tips to help you do just that.

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Identify which skills and/or knowledge you need to improve

You might need to brush up on professional skills, like how to place an IO; soft skills like communication or assertiveness; or personal development, such as improving your nutrition. “You need to know where the gaps are before you can begin to fill them,” nursefocus.org states.

Check out formal and informal leadership positions within your unit

Would you enjoy being a charge nurse and be responsible for planning, coordinating and evaluating your unit’s activities? If you’ve been in your job awhile, consider becoming a nurse mentor to someone new to the unit. Or you might be perfect for nurse preceptor role to help train the next generation of nurses.

Consider what parts of your job are the most satisfying and rewarding

Are there ways that you can do more of this? What education, skills or certifications would equip you for this?

Who do you admire?

Talk to this person and ask for recommendations on education, including classic articles, webinars and classes. And don’t overlook the simple power of asking about their philosophy of life. Often, this is more crucial to who they are and how they practice than any specific knowledge they could impart.

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Make a plan

Now that you have some notes for where you would like to go, sit down and map out a blueprint for getting there.

Check in with your manager and tell them what you are considering

Be sure they know whether you want to stay at the bedside or are considering a move, so they can steer you toward the right resources. Find out if you qualify for financial assistance. You might be surprised to find just how many resources are available.

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