What Are The Qualities Of A Great Nurse?
If you are looking for an easy job, you can just do your hours in and then go home and forget about it until the next time you have to go in; nursing isn’t the right option for you. However, if you want a job that is diverse, fascinating, rewarding, hard, and meaningful, nursing is perfect for you, as long as you have some of the most important qualities of a nurse or you’re able to learn them relatively quickly once you get started (and ideally before).
When you’re a nurse, the work is never-ending, but this is something that nurses enjoy. It means they are always busy and their brains (and bodies) are always active, and whether they are studying to become a nurse, furthering their education, or adding to their required skills, there is always something more to learn.
As we’ve said, there are some qualities that are absolutely essential if you want to be a nurse, and particularly if you want to be a good nurse. If you are able to achieve these qualities, then even the hardest day won’t seem quite such a challenge; read on to find out more.
One of the most important skills that a nurse needs to have is that they must be prepared to put in a lot of hard work. It’s virtually impossible for a nurse to just sit back and let others do the work around them; they must be part of the team, and they must do their part. The very best nurses won’t just do their own jobs, however; they will go further and do more. They will notice when someone needs help – whether that’s a patient, the patient’s family, or a colleague – and they will do what is required to ensure that help is received.
It’s not always easy to determine whether or not you are a hard worker. You might think you are, but when it comes to it, you would rather have an easier job because you don’t like the things you have to do and the non-stop action of working in the healthcare profession, including the chance to continue your education and study BSN accelerated programs to enhance your skills. Alternatively, you might not think you’re a hard worker, but once you begin nursing, you realize that it’s exactly what you love, and you thrive in a pressurized environment. Sometimes you just have to see what happens.
High Standards Of Professionalism
If you want to be an amazing nurse, one of the qualities you will need is a high standard of professionalism. It won’t matter what you’re doing or who you’re dealing with. You’ll always be as professional as possible. You might be doing something ‘minor’ (although there are really no minor jobs in nursing; everything is important) like checking charts or making a bed, or perhaps something more immediately urgent such as helping in surgery or saving a life in the ER, but when it comes to professionalism, it won’t matter what the task is – you will show professionalism at all times.
This might sound like a simple quality to have, but there is more to it than you might think, and it’s not always easy. Nurses are often tired. They have to deal with unpleasant people as well as nice ones, they might have missed a break or a meal, and they might just want to go home. Yet still, they must be professional at all times. Could you do this?
As we’ve seen, nurses need to be extremely hard working and professional. Along with this, they must also be absolutely diligent in their work. This is a very important quality as it means that, with diligence in nursing, nothing will be missed, and every job will be completed, ensuring the patient is cared for in the best possible way.
When you are a nurse, you must understand exactly what is required of you, down to the smallest task. However, you must always be aware of everything that is happening around you and do whatever it takes to help. Being diligent means, you are always on the lookout for additional work and tasks and that you’ll dig in when needed.
Exceptional Communication Skills
There are so many important qualities that a good nurse must-have, but one that cannot be ignored is having exceptional communication skills. These are non-negotiable, and without them, the job – which is already hard – will become all but impossible to do well.
A nurse who is able to communicate well will be able to do their job much more easily. You need to be able to speak to patients and colleagues just as easily as one another, although in different ways. For example, you wouldn’t speak to a patient in the same way as you would the surgeon who was going to operate on them; there are different words used at the very least, but usually a different tone and so on as well. Understanding not just how to communicate but how to communicate with a lot of different people about a lot of different things is crucial and a very big part of being a nurse.
Following on from communication skills is interpersonal skills. Although somewhat similar, there are some differences, and therefore it’s another quality that a great nurse must be aware of and aim to have in their daily lives if they want to make things better for their patients and easier for them.
Interpersonal skills include being empathetic and compassionate. If you can do this, the patient will have a better experience in hospital (or wherever it is you are nursing, as hospitals are not the only place for nurses to help people) and may even heal and recover more quickly; there is certainly a school of thought that feels good mental health is conducive to good physical health.
Mastering interpersonal skills is not an easy thing to do, but the more time you spend with your patients, the easier it will be to help them, and the better a nurse you will become.