If you feel like your career as a registered nurse is stagnating right now, know that you don’t have to be stuck in your current position. One of the great things about being a nurse is the quasi-infinite number of career paths that you can take. If you’re ready to do the work and take the steps necessary to stand out, you could either get to a better position where you are or work in a completely different setting. Let’s take a look at a few tips for nurses who want to advance their careers.
Get an Online Degree
One of the things you should consider doing is getting an advanced nursing degree online. There are tons of reputable online programs that will allow you to get your master’s in a fraction of the time it would usually take.
This is bar-none the best option for nurses who want to be able to earn money while they get their credentials. You could either decide to follow classes part-time and work full-time or vice versa. Also, look at all options available and make sure that you only go with a program that is accredited by the CCNE or the AACN.
Find a Mentor
Another thing you should do is find a mentor. It can be someone from within your organization or elsewhere. Picking a mentor in your organization is great because they’ll have a better understanding of the conditions that you’re working in. Finding a mentor that is working in another facility or state, on the other hand, could give you access to new opportunities. It’s up to you to see what would work the best for you.
If you’re having difficulty finding a mentor, you should consider joining a nursing association. They can be extremely valuable for anyone looking for career advancement. They can also be great places for networking and support.
Ask to Move Units
Before you consider working somewhere else or picking up a specialization, you should think about changing units first. This could be enough to give your career a second life. This is something you should be able to do easily if you’ve been working at the same facility for a long time and have a good reputation.
You could find out that you prefer the pace in your new department. This is also a great way to tell if you could see yourself working in a specific specialization before you go all in. Take the time to look at the tasks people are performing and don’t hesitate to ask questions. Ask them about the things they like and don’t like about the position and some of the challenges they had to face. This will give you a better idea of whether the specialization is the right choice for you.
Nursing is a very diverse field, and if you’re ready for something new, know that many options are open to you. Take the time to look at whether you’re truly ready to make the shift and what you need to prepare for.