Did you know that the healthcare industry is now the largest employer in the United States? For many people that may come as a surprise, but for those in the industry, you have seen the growth first-hand, as well as the sheer demand for healthcare workers. Everything from front-line personnel to administrative positions is growing in the industry, which means a whole lot of jobs and opportunities are opening up. For those working hard each and every day, this can also be the perfect opportunity to elevate their career, apply for that promotion, and work up to a more senior role in the healthcare industry.
If you have dreams of a more senior position but are unsure of how to get started, here are some tips and steps that can make your goals a reality.
Create a Goal for Yourself
The best place to start is by creating a goal for yourself. What is your dream job in the healthcare industry? Where do you want to be one year, five years, or 10 years down the road in your career? Simply saying “I want a promotion” isn’t specific enough, it’s best to identify the exact job and title so that you can start to investigate what is needed on your end.
Now that you’ve identified that dream job, you can go ahead and look at the job requirements, skills needed, experience level, and of course the education and training you need.
Look into Healthcare Management and Administration
No matter the industry, there will always be trends, and right now there is a real need for those in healthcare management and administration. This trend can help you in setting your career goal, as this could be a route to take in terms of working up the ladder. If you’ve been part of the front-line staff up until this point, it may be time to switch things up and consider taking a job behind the scenes.
Make Your Goals Known to Your Supervisor
Once you have set your career goal, it’s also wise to make that goal known to your supervisor. You can get some feedback from them about what would be required in terms of experience and training, and perhaps they can provide you with some useful tips and advice. Not only that, they will now have you in mind should a position open up that you are qualified for.
Go Back to School
While this may sound counter-productive, especially if you’ve already gone through school for your current job, the fact is that in order to work your way up the ladder, more training and education may be necessary. Take for example the DNP executive leadership online programs through Baylor University, which are meant for nurse leaders.
Through this program, you will be studying and working online, which will allow you to keep working at the same time. Once you finish the program, you can apply for such leadership roles as a chief nursing executive, chief nursing officer, or vice president of nursing. Not only will you have more responsibility and be in that senior role, but you can also look forward to a higher salary. The nurse executive, for example, earns on average $131,000.
Don’t Sell Yourself Short
If you’ve already got the experience, training, and education needed to move up to that next level in your career, then it’s time to take an active approach. The saying “you are your own worst enemy” may be in play as you may be selling yourself short. Sometimes it’s not a matter of what steps you can take but the mindset you have. Confidence in yourself and your abilities can take you far in any career, not just one in the healthcare industry.
Look Outside Your Current Place of Employment
You also want to be sure you don’t pigeon-hole yourself too much. Holding out for that senior job opening at your current place of employment may seem like a good plan, but in reality, you might be missing out on the “perfect job” somewhere else. There is absolutely no harm in looking outside your current place of employment and learning about what other jobs exist.
This can mean looking at other hospitals in your region, health clinics, medical research facilities, and more. As the statistics show, the healthcare industry is the largest employer in the country, which means you shouldn’t feel stuck at one place.
Work on Skills That Can Enhance Your Opportunities
This is also the time for personal reflection. Now is the time to look at your own skills – both your strengths and weaknesses – so you can identify areas to focus on. Take for example such skills as problem-solving., critical thinking, and communication. Each of these will be vital skills to have in a senior position, regardless of the actual job. The great news is that you can better your current skill level now, and prepare yourself for when you do get that dream job.
Stay Up-to-Date on Current News and Knowledge
In your hopes to move up the career ladder, it’s also a good idea to take an active role in staying up-to-date on medical news and trends. You can do this by reading the news daily, subscribing to a medical journal, and reading submissions from experts in the field. As they say, the more you learn, the more you know, and that knowledge can certainly help you to land that senior career role. At the very least it will help you to be more well-rounded in the industry.
It’s a Combination of Steps and Tips
Elevating your career in the healthcare industry is really about taking a number of steps and considering all tips to advance your knowledge, skills, and confidence. The good news is that there are job opportunities in the field, it’s a matter of narrowing down your goals, creating a plan, and then following through on those steps.