When you have been in the nursing and healthcare industry for a little while, you begin to see that changes need to be made. You also begin to realize that to make those changes, you need to take action. Waiting for others within the industry to take action is not good enough. To get into a leadership position where you can make change happen and where you can influence others, you must have a path or route to follow. To get that leadership post or role that you deserve and need for change, you have to lay down a path to follow. So, to create that path, what must you take into account?
Knowing the Time is Right for Change and Growth
Is there ever a right time for change and growth? The simple answer is YES, there is. When you feel that you are not having a great impact, you know you are ready for growth and empowerment. When you know that industry standards for care and for quality of care are not living up to your expectations or to your patients’ standards, then YES, the time is right for a change. Changing and growing can be difficult, especially if you have been in a patient-centered role, such as nursing, for a few years or more. However, do not let this put you off because change can also be incredibly exciting and challenging too.
Why Leadership is the Right Way to Go
When you are working as a registered nurse, you get to see a lot firsthand, and sometimes, you cannot see impactful changes happening at a grassroots level. This can make your role very frustrating, and it can leave your patients receiving inadequate care too. Leadership is the right way to go for you and for your career if you are committed to change and difference. Those in leadership roles can make a difference for patients, and they can also have an impact on the standards and care put in place for nurses and other healthcare professionals.
What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?
You are not going to be brilliant or fantastic at everything that you do. You will have areas of strength and areas of weakness. Establishing what these are and then targeting them and developing them is always a good move to make. So, what are your communication skills like with others – do you come across as confident, or can you be too quiet and often misheard? Do you enjoy working as part of a team all of the time, or would you prefer to work by yourself? Do you like working in a team only when you have to? When you go for leadership, you have to look at your strengths and weaknesses through new eyes. You have to evolve and learn to develop what you are as a professional if you are going to stand any chance of success.
Focusing Your Time, Energy, and Effort on Advancing Your Education
As well as looking at strengths and weaknesses, you also have to focus on advancing your education. Turning your attention once more to education is necessary, especially when you are focusing on growth. There are highly relevant online DNP leadership programs that you can study from the comfort of your home or workplace. These online programs will prepare you and raise your awareness about what it takes to be a leader within the healthcare and nursing industry. If you do not take the opportunity to advance and enhance your education, then you will get left behind, and others will beat you to that leadership post or role that you want.
What Have You Got to Offer and Bring to a Leadership Role?
Once you are committed to pursuing a leadership post or role, you then have to think carefully about what you have to offer and bring to the role. Your experience as a nurse will help shape your role, and it will help guide your future too, but what other attributes can you bring to the role? For example, can you bring empathy and dedication to any post you undertake? Or, could you share valuable knowledge about the challenges faced on the front line of nursing and healthcare work? When you can establish just what you can bring to the role, you can then start focusing on securing a position.
What Does Your Vision Look Like?
Do you have a great vision that you want to share with others – perhaps about a more unified and fair health system for all? Or, do you have care standards and quality of care issues that you want to bring to the forefront of the industry – while making an impact? When you become a leader, you must have a vision that you can realize, and you must have a vision that you can share with others too. If you do not have a vision, then you will not get the support of any healthcare professionals simply because they will not know what you are trying to achieve and why.
Creating an Action Strategy to Realize Your Ambitions
To become a leader in the nursing or healthcare industry, you must have an action strategy. If you do not have a focused and targeted approach, you will struggle to land a leadership post. When you are creating an action strategy, it is important to look at short-term goals and aspirations as well as long-term goals and objectives. When you focus on both short- and long-term goals, you can be sure that you will achieve success and, of course, realize your ambitions.
Being in a leadership role is a huge responsibility, and of course, it is one that should not be taken lightly. Utilizing your nursing experiences to make a real difference and change for both patients and healthcare professionals, all while playing a key role in the healthcare industry, is a huge responsibility. As such, it is a responsibility that you must train and prepare for. If you are not prepared to change, evolve, and grow as an individual – how can you expect others to do the same?