Tips for Maintaining Professionalism in Nursing

You are a part of a qualified health team as an RN. But in a high-stress setting, acting the part all the time can be hard. Professionalism in nursing is about giving first priority to patients, upholding the job’s principles, and bringing the right attitude to the job every day.

The position of a nurse is more than just any of the qualities or tips. The job demands that they turn up ready to do the job every single shift.

With these seven tips below, you can get ahead when it comes showing your professional side. Continue reading to learn more about maintaining professionalism in nursing. 

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Bring a Positive Attitude to Every Shift

Negativity in the workplace has side effects. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that negativity is costing employers about $3 billion per annum. In a healthcare climate, money is not the only bottom line. Negative outlooks and behaviors will undermine the morale of the employees and put patients at risk.

Professionalism in nursing demands that each job be performed with an attitude as optimistic as possible without being unrealistic. Faced with severe patient concerns, an overly cheerful attitude is not professional either.

Attitude is one of the top three characteristics that assess nursing professionalism, according to a survey conducted by the National Institutes of Health.

Develop Strong Ethical Practices

Ultimately, a significant characteristic of a great nurse are excellent standards and the desire to stick with them amid extreme stresses.

If you’re grappling with ethical dilemmas in the ER or other nursing fields, remember the principles you’ve studied in college and training. In addition, you can speak to mentors or other trustworthy sources to figure out places where you’re unsure and stick to your beliefs while battling for what’s right in a clinical setting.

Pay Attention to Your Appearance

 Nursing may not be a glamorous profession, and too much makeup or bling may literally get in the way of your job. Yet think about how patients and family members view your appearance, for this is the first impression made.

Wear appropriate nursing clothing, including scrubs or uniforms provided by your employer. In addition, keep your hair brushed or pulled back and styled, so it does not become a nuisance for your patients or yourself. It is best to keep an extra pair of scrubs at hand. This way, even after an accident or unpleasant situation, you can maintain the appearance of a professional nurse.

Help Both Your Patients and Co-workers

Being a healthcare provider involves working as part of a team. While nurses are usually excellent at assisting patients, in the hustle of a busy shift, it can be easy to forget colleagues.

There are many ways to integrate nursing expertise into the interpersonal working relationships including providing assistance to other nurses with challenging tasks or patients, as allowed by facilities policy.

You should also avoid talking about other nurses with colleagues, even though you disagree with their job or attitude. However, if you are concerned about the quality of care or patient risk, speak to the correct supervisor and not other nurses. Give other nurses advice or knowledge and accept help or understanding from nurses with more experience.

Be Accountable for Your Actions

The Ontario Registered Nurses’ Associate offers a PDF file of best practices in nurse training that fits well with US nurses. Accountability is one of the qualities cited. Nurses must be able to recognize and integrate services, government, and clinical legislation and self-regulate as they operate.

While most hospitals have enforcement policies in place, at the moment, nurses will need to make decisions and be responsible for their actions. That means taking charge when necessary and required, but it also means admitting to errors and bringing ideas to the table to make things right where possible.

Listen to Your Patients

As a professional RN, you probably have a lot to pass on to your patients and family members. From education to comfort, there is no question that professionalism in nursing requires constructive and compassionate communication. But it also calls for attention. Therefore, make sure you truly listen to your patients to fully understand their needs.

Regularly Update Your Nursing Knowledge

Staying up-to-date helps you avoid medical mistakes, speak more for patients, and become a higher member of a multidisciplinary clinical team. With that, advances in the medical field happen each and every day. Therefore, you will need to make sure that you continue your education, even after you already have a job in nursing.

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By following these nurse professionalism tips, you can work well within a clinical team, help encourage positive outcomes for the patient, and enjoy a long-lasting career in nursing.