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Taking Your Career in Healthcare to the Next Level in 4 Steps

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As a professional already working and thriving in the field of healthcare, you can be forgiven for thinking that there’s no way you can possibly advance any further in your career. It would be very remiss of you to pigeonhole yourself in this way, however, as there are always ways for you to take your career to the next level. No matter what level you’re currently at, whether you’re a nurse on work experience or whether you’re the Chief of Surgery at a hospital, there are always ways for you to move forward.


Here are four steps you can take to take your career in healthcare to the next level:


  1. Learn more about your profession


No matter what specific kind of healthcare professional you may be, you can rest assured that there will always be ways for you to learn more about your field. It’s just up to you to decide whether you learn while on the job or whether you go back to university in order to receive this education.


If you do decide that heading back to university is the best course of action for you to take in this instance, then you should be sure to research all possible avenues. It’s crucial that you choose a course that suits your current skill set. More importantly, it’s essential that you choose a program that is going to teach you what you want and need to know based on your career goals. If you wish to become a family nurse practitioner, for instance, then this would mean enrolling yourself on an ADN to Nurse Practitioner course. By doing so, you will learn all about community health, nursing care for adolescents, nursing care for adults, and the dimensions of professional nursing. The end result? You will have a degree on your nursing resume that will open up the right doors for you as you seek to progress in your career.


  1. Reflect on your weaknesses


You aren’t going to take your career to the next level if you continuously allow for the same problems to hold you back from progressing. For this reason, as hard as it might be to do so, you have to resolve to reflect on your weaknesses regularly. It will allow you to see where you’ve gone wrong in the past and what might have triggered your failures, and it will then allow you to put strategies into place that will help you to circumvent your challenges and reframe them going forward


For example, have you ever struggled to keep your cool with particularly tricky patients at 2 AM? If so, you might want to consider why it is you become so short-tempered at that point in the early morning, and take action accordingly. It could lead you to tweak your sleeping schedule to ensure that you get more rest during the day.


  1. Act like a leader


Hospital committees, department heads, patients, they all like one thing: leaders. If you can prove yourself to be a great leader in your healthcare workplace, whether you’re in a management position or not, you will show yourself to be someone that people can trust to get the job done. Ultimately, this will result in your superiors taking more notice of you and the work that you do, and them then providing you with more opportunities for career growth going forward.


In order to act as a leader in your place of work, you should:


  • Go that extra mile to make sure that your colleagues are providing excellent patient practice, not just yourself
  • Always be confident in your own ability, even when there are gaps in your knowledge (be careful not to exert too much confidence in this instance, though)
  • Never compromise your values or morals in order to get ahead, as this will prove to your superiors that you can be swayed easily
  • Be sure to communicate with everybody and anybody you can, from your department heads to interns working in your hospital to your patients


Never stop networking


Quite simply, the bigger your network, the greater chance you will have of taking your career to the next level. For one, this is because you will have more people to vouch for your healthcare credibilities whenever you apply for a new role in the field. Also, the more people you know, the better chance you’ll have of hearing about potential job openings. You should, then, resolve to never stop networking, no matter how many years you’ve already spent working in the healthcare industry.


As a working healthcare professional, however, you’ll know full well that this is never going to prove to be an easy task. Where can you possibly find the time to network when you work every hour that God sends? It’s true, networking is never going to be straightforward when you work so many long, demanding, and intense shifts, but there are ways for you to make this task a lot easier for yourself. One way to do so is to head to healthcare association job fairs. Doing so will allow you to come up close and personal with a number of working professionals at one time, meaning you can schmooze them all in one fell swoop. If you can, when you know that such a fair is on the horizon, try to make it so that your shift pattern allows you to attend. The earlier you get this sorted, the more chance you’ll have of being able to attend the event. It means that you’re going to have to keep your ear to the ground and do your best to remain abreast of all the forthcoming fairs.


Something else that you can do to network despite your lack of free time is to set yourself up with a LinkedIn page. This page will allow you to remain in touch with a number of healthcare professionals while you’re on the go. You might even be able to use this website to perform a bit of networking during your working hours… that’s if you’re lucky enough to be granted a five-minute break during your shift, of course!

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