When it comes to healthcare, most people think that a caring nature, kind heart, and high patience are what a person needs. Although this is valid to some extent, there is much more than these qualities regarding being a good healthcare provider. The field of healthcare is a unique one; not everyone is suitable for it. Apart from appropriate medical and technical knowledge and practical experience, soft skills also play a crucial role in this field.
A particular skill set and a distinct profile seem to stand out more, help to achieve success, and gain personal satisfaction. If you lack in any one of the areas, don’t worry. Just a bit of a self-assessment can set you on the right track to success. Maybe you already know how to communicate effectively but lack time management. Or perhaps you have the right attitude and emotional intelligence but can’t deal with criticism.
The following set of intangible personality traits can offer you a glimpse of the qualities you should adopt to start your career – or become a better practitioner – in the healthcare industry.
1. Empathy and emotional stability
If you have a strong desire to help other people, it means you already are empathetic by nature. However, the definition of empathy is slightly different when you are a healthcare worker. It refers to addressing and understanding the emotional state of the person without being influenced by it.
For instance, while working as a nurse, you might encounter situations when patients are in too much pain. Or sometimes, patients feel frustrated and annoyed because of a delay in treatment or lack of understanding. They need the company of someone that listens to them and respect their point of view. It is your responsibility to acknowledge patients’ feelings and show compassion since nurses spend relatively more time than any other healthcare provider. For this reason, consider pursuing an online masters degree in nursing to take your skills up to par and forge your career to the next level. Flexible healthcare-related higher education degrees play a crucial role in professional development. They allow practitioners to hone their core competencies and soft skills while still in a practical setting.
2. Communication skills
Much like the other workplaces, one of the core skills of the healthcare industry is effective communication. You won’t be sitting behind the desk and working on the computer all day long as a healthcare worker. Your job requires you to interact with patients and other healthcare staff around the clock.
There will be times where you might have to convey disappointing news to the patients. Or let the patients know about the treatment plans. You must be able to communicate medical terminology in a way that sounds reasonable and makes total sense to a layperson. However, it is worthy to note that communication not only involves speaking but listening too. Listen intently to the patient’s queries and understand their needs to make them feel valued. Only then will you be able to shine brightest in a healthcare career track. Moreover, if you’re working under a doctor or senior care provider/manager, learn to listen to the chain of command to avoid crucial errors on the job.
3. Honesty and integrity
As a healthcare provider, you must incorporate honesty, integrity, and transparency in your personality. There will be some cases where you might not be able to diagnose immediately or understand everything. In situations like these, try to be honest with your patient. It will help build a trustworthy relationship with the patients since they know you are educating yourself.
The loss of honesty and integrity can significantly affect treatment procedures as patients will lose faith in you and the system. Remember, being honest and transparent doesn’t mean being rude or blunt. Practice how to be honest without being hurtful with your patients.
4. Attention to detail
You don’t want your best treatment plan to fall by the wayside by overlooking the unexpected and minor details. Slight negligence on your part can be a matter of life and death for your patient. That is why paying attention to every single minute detail is essential for healthcare service providers. Try to check and recheck every detail more than one time to ensure you have all the correct information. Every step, including diagnosis, medicine prescription, documentation, and overall treatment process, requires precision and attention to detail.
Healthcare professionals need to work alongside each other for better outcomes and increased efficiency. From doctors to nurses to lab assistants, each healthcare provider must coordinate for patient treatment and satisfaction. As a healthcare provider, you must practice a positive attitude while working on patient recovery with other peers.
Don’t just focus on your growth and success in the career. Instead, create a positive environment to help other team members grow while you carve out a career for yourself. Working in a team provides an excellent opportunity to learn from other people and aids in professional development.
6. Be physically fit and strong
Although not all, yet most healthcare job roles such as occupational therapists, nurses, physicians, etc., require professionals to be proactive and physically healthy. At times, you might have to work for long hours without any break. Or you might have to lift patients from a wheelchair or hospital bed. Sometimes you might need to check on your patients, going from room to room. How can you perform these tasks if your body isn’t physically fit and strong? Thus, maintain your physical health to stay active round the clock and perform your day-to-day responsibilities efficiently.
A healthcare career, without a doubt, can get challenging and overwhelming at times. However, it can be immensely gratifying if you are passionate and love your job. After all, it is not just about performing a regular job but a commitment to make a real difference in people’s lives. You need to possess the proper skill set and work with great enthusiasm, knowing you will bring light to the lives of others. Thus, if you think you have got what it takes to be a good healthcare professional, now is the right time to make your career in this rewarding field.