Nursing can take a healthcare professional through many pathways. With an LPN or RN certification, a nurse can find themselves in many careers and positions that lead right into nursing administration. Nurses with advanced degrees can teach in higher education, or they can become nurse practitioners.
However, not all nurses want to leave the hospital ward. A nurse working in a hospital does not necessarily need an advanced degree to perform the functions of their job, so why would a nurse seek higher education?
There are a few compelling reasons a nurse might wish to get an advanced degree, such as one that prepares them for leadership.
Even within this small area of nursing, there are opportunities to take on a leadership role. This is the reason earning qualifications in nursing leadership can be helpful in working with patients as part of a hospital setting. As the nursing profession becomes more complex, nurses will need additional skills to work effectively on the floor. Here are a few reasons nurses should consider pursuing a credential in leadership.
Leadership programs hone management skills
First and foremost, leadership programs in nursing help students develop soft skills needed in this setting, in addition to the hard skills. Some of the soft skills that are required to be a leader in a hospital ward include interpersonal skills (verbal and written communication), conflict management, teamwork, and collaboration, among others.
Hard skills nurses learn while at school are finance, business management, and human resource management. They will also study strategic management and professional development skills.
Preparing nurse leaders
One of the reasons nurses should pursue credentials from a nurse leadership program such as the one offered by the University of Indianapolis is because many wards have roles for nurse leaders. In this role, nurse leaders must establish goals and communicate them to team members. This is important because nurses on the team must know their role in the ward, which is communicated to them by their nurse leader.
Furthermore, nursing leadership is needed with patients themselves. At the bedside, leadership education can aid in helping nurses to better direct, coordinate, and direct patient care. As the first point of contact in the hospital setting, the nurse is an advocate for patients. Nurses must be able to relay the concerns of patients and their loved ones to the team.
Naturally, earning an additional degree or credential can lead to career advancement, and this is certainly the case with a degree in nursing leadership. For nurses who want to remain in a hospital setting, the degree prepares them to take on the role of nurse leader. This role requires the nurse to not only communicate effectively with team members including physicians but also to be able to lead the team when dealing with patients. A degree program can help nurses to develop the soft and hard skills needed to accomplish both jobs. Moreover, a degree program prepares them just in case they do want to move beyond the hospital ward.