Nurse practitioners play a hugely important role in the healthcare industry. They are licensed, independent medical professionals who tend to have expertise in a chosen area of their profession. Similar to physicians, nurse practitioners assess, diagnose, and treat conditions by prescribing medication, conducting patient counseling, ordering tests, and promoting the overall health and wellbeing of their patients. Today, there are hundreds of thousands of nurse practitioners in the US and the high demand for professionals means that the number is ever-growing. So, what are some of the qualities that you need to be a successful nurse practitioner?
Nurse practitioners often find themselves working with patients during some of the toughest times of their lives, and a lot of empathy is necessary. Empathy is defined as the ability to be sensitive to and understand the feelings of another; nurse practitioners need to be able to see the condition from the patient’s perspective and put themselves in their patient’s shoes. Empathy is one of the main characteristics required to be a successful nurse practitioner. It allows them to understand how their patients are feeling and provide the best level of care by being genuinely concerned for their patients’ wellbeing. A high level of empathy allows nurse practitioners to be authentic, kind, and compassionate.
Nurse practitioners are professionals who work in an industry where no two days are ever going to be the same. They deal with a wide range of patients from different backgrounds and it’s not uncommon for them to find themselves dealing with unexpected situations. As a result, they need to possess the ability to be creative and think quickly on their feet, even if they are under pressure. Nurse practitioners need to be good at generating new ideas, communicating well with others, and solving problems. Creative nurse practitioners tend to be open-minded, non-judgmental, curious, and open to trying new things.
Successful nurse practitioners are some of the most tenacious professionals that you will ever meet. Tenacity is defined as perseverance, resolve, and determination, and in the medical industry, this ability to keep going and never give up even when the going gets tough is absolutely essential. Nurse practitioners are certainly no fans of quitting and they will persevere, whether they’re fighting on behalf of one of their patients or working towards independent practice.
Like all medical professionals, nurse practitioners need to be people who possess a high degree of integrity. Integrity means being trustworthy, ethical, and honest. According to the Gallup poll from 2016, US citizens identified nurses as being the most ethical and honest professions for the 15th year. Nurse practitioners are responsible for so much when it comes to their patients, and we need to be able to trust them to always do the right thing no matter what. Integrity means always standing up for patients and their rights, no matter who you are going up against. A good nurse practitioner will always fight for what’s right and won’t be intimidated by insurance companies, employers, or even the government. Patients and their wellbeing come first.
Nurse practitioners have a lot of work and responsibility on their shoulders; therefore, it is important that they are individuals who are dedicated to their work and the calling that they have chosen for their career. The best nurse practitioners are those that truly enjoy their work and couldn’t imagine doing anything else, no matter how difficult it might get. One of the main qualities of being a good nurse practitioner is a dedication and commitment to helping and caring for others in their times of need. And, the difference that you can make as a nurse practitioner when you have this attitude towards your work can be one of the biggest benefits of this career – even more so than the generous FNP nurse salary.
Finally, nurse practitioners need to be excellent communicators. Every day, they spend hours speaking with patients and their families about health conditions, prescribing medication, and giving patients advice on how to best look after their health. They need to be able to get this information across to patients in a clear and concise way that avoids misunderstandings, and they should also possess excellent listening skills so that they can truly understand and hear patient needs and concerns. And, many nurse practitioners also lead teams of other healthcare professionals; strong communication skills are absolutely vital here to ensure that the entire team is able to work together towards a common goal of providing the best standard of patient care.
Do you possess these qualities? If you can relate to all or most of these, you could make an excellent nurse practitioner.