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6 Ways to Advance Your Nursing Career

Nurses are often said to be the heart of healthcare; they are on the frontline, caring for people every day and making a huge difference to their lives and their quality of life. They work long hours all for the love of it. It can be an extremely rewarding career; you can see the impact of your work right in front of you and make real connections with patients and other healthcare professionals.

Healthcare is essential for everyone and embarking on a nursing career means you can be a part of helping people and creating better living conditions for them, but it can be difficult to fit a nursing education around your everyday life because of its demanding nature. Plus, to provide excellent healthcare, you need to have excellent education. 

Below are six ways you can advance your nursing career.

1.   Specialize

Have you considered specializing your education and your skills? Specializing in a specific field, like nursing practitioner or pediatrics, can boost your career prospects dramatically, and it means that you can follow your passion within nursing at the same time. Having a specialist nursing education opens many doors within the healthcare industry.

2.   Take a Course Online

As you probably are already well aware, a nursing career is challenging, and the hours are long. You might find that you simply do not have the time to invest in furthering your education and your skills, so you stay where you are for convenience and comfort.

Many university nursing programs, such as these nurse practitioner programs in Michigan, now offer comprehensive online options for you to complete your chosen program. With an online program and classes, you can fit your education perfectly around your shifts and make it work for your current lifestyle. You won’t need to sacrifice your lifestyle for your education!

3.   Make Connections

When you undertake a higher degree in nursing, you will be automatically enrolled alongside your fellow classmates who have the same or highly similar goals to you. Once you complete your degree together, you will have connections across the country and across various hospitals and healthcare districts simply because they do. You never know what kinds of opportunities may arise purely from knowing others within the same industry.

You can also make connections with those teaching the programs! They will of course offer you support during the program and most will be courteous enough to stay in contact with you afterwards to help you progress your career even further.

4.   Take a Chance

A lot of times, when advancing your career, it can all come down to taking chances. Whether this is by applying to a job you think you have no chance of getting or expanding your worldview by taking on something you hadn’t considered before. If you complete an MSN nurse practitioner program, the directions available to you open so wildly that you’ll be itching to take a chance on something new you’ve always wanted to go into but didn’t have the opportunity to before without your higher education.

Qualified nurse practitioners can go on to work in a variety of healthcare organizations that were unavailable to them previously, including surgical hospitals, physician offices and outpatient care centers. If these are locations you’ve always dreamed of working in as a nurse, but you’ve always seen them as just out of your reach, an online nursing program could give you the chance to progress to your dream position and dream location!

If this isn’t enough to convince you, then the fact that a nurse practitioner’s annual salary is generally 60% higher than a registered nurse’s just might!

5.   Transfer

Sometimes, your work environment can be the thing that is stopping you from progressing further than you know that you can. If you know that there aren’t any ways for you to progress in your career at your current place of work, it might be time for you to consider moving away to a place that can offer you more options for progression and training. There don’t need to be any hard feelings for your place of work, but sometimes you grow bigger and better than where you work, and it suddenly isn’t the best fit for you anymore.

If you are constantly thinking about your ambitions and your nursing goals and you know for sure that you can’t progress in your current situation, then research other nursing positions and healthcare organizations in your local area and discover just what they can offer you in terms of career progression.

6.   Ask Your Supervisor

This one could be a little risky, depending on how your supervisor reacts to you wanting to step out and above of your current role.

If you know that your supervisor will be understanding and willing to help you, then it can be beneficial to you to ask them for advice and if there are any ways for you to gain any new training in your current role. Your supervisor should have connections within and outside of the organization you’re working with and they will be able to direct you to the kind of progression you’re looking for.

It might be daunting initially, but don’t be afraid to ask your organization for the advice that you need from them. You never know, they may have some exciting training opportunities available to you that you can take and use to advance to your next step in your nursing career.

Nursing is a career and profession that rewards you daily. You are constantly learning on the job, but there are always more ways and things for you to learn, whether you complete an online program or complete some extra training at your current place of work. Take a hold of your own future and give yourself the education that you deserve so that you can provide the best healthcare possible to your patients and so that you can keep your brain healthy with learning and expanding your career prospects.

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