Essential Nursing Skills You Need to Know


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Even if you have sharpened your nursing skills to a top-notch level, and have completed your nursing exams and aced them, you are not 100% there yet. Your nursing resume may look complete but there are essential nursing skills that cannot be learned in a classroom that will set you apart from the crowd. If you know about core skills training framework then you are on the right path. While you can enroll in a dnp program online to get the knowledge and qualifications you need to get to the top in your nursing career, there are seven essential skills you should have that will take you beyond book smarts and technical skills.

Essential Nursing Skills You Need to Know

Be Aware of Your Patient’s Cultural Practices

What differentiates between a great nurse and a good nurse is a simple balance of intellect and social skills. Understanding your patient’s cultural background is critical in delivering patient-focused medical care. It may not be enough to know about core skills training framework if you are not aware of the cultural values and beliefs that motivate your patients. They are known to influence a person’s view of wellness, health care and adherence to treatment and death.

However, understanding is not enough, as a caregiver, you have to accept, respect and accommodate the preferences of your patients. Their beliefs, customs, and cultural practices should be part and parcel of your planning and delivery of medical care. The key to understanding and accommodating your patients’ cultural beliefs is by first recognizing your biases. You can start from there and continue to develop this core skill by increasing your knowledge. You can also enhance your cultural awareness through various nursing institution near you. CEUs for Nurses can help you to keep advancing your nursing skills.

Paying Attention to Details

Paying attention to details is an essential nursing skill that helps you in several ways. First, it helps you to avoid making a medical error. Secondly, it makes you a great caregiver. The best way to enhance such a skill is by focusing on developing your listening skills and non-verbal cues. This is important because it makes the patient feel understood rather than heard. It also enables you to attend to the patient’s needs because you are aware of their concerns. Approach your work from another perspective. Focus on delivering patient-centered care instead of task-oriented. Ensure that you are always there with your patients and avoid any distractions that may disrupt you from providing the much needed medical care.

Be Compassionate

Nurses are always on the front line interacting with different kinds of patients, their family members, and other hindrances to the healthcare systems. Being compassionate is critical to providing medical care but it may be difficult to do so in the current environment. Sometimes you will have to work regardless of the fatigue you might be going through. In such a case you need to take care of yourself first. Consider doing physical exercises, meditation, and volunteering which will help you reconnect with your passions. This may also remind you of your burning desire to help other people which is often the reason that drives people in the nursing industry.


Despite your external appearance and style, it is always important to remember that everything you do is a reflection of your ethical and moral values. Nurses need to try and show professionalism in front of both the patients and workmates. Professionalism should be displayed in all areas including integrity, respect, attitude, discipline, and responsibility among others. Focus on patient care is only part of a collaborative whole.

Critical Thinking

As a nurse, problem-solving should be part of your top skills. Time and resources are in limited supply and there are always many things to be done. The only way you can effectively balance between the two factors is by having to sharpen your problem-solving skills. Critical thing means that you can easily comprehend any given information then integrate your experiences with evidence and outcomes and transform them into effective plans and treatment solutions for your patients. Identify problems when you can and discuss them with your superiors. Keep tabs with current information and always be aware of quality improvements in your health facility as a way to enhance your critical thinking capabilities.

Effective Communications Skills and Time Management

These are two critical skills bundled into one. In terms of time management, nurses should always prioritize their work. They should also be organized and consider keeping things such as a personal checklist, spreadsheets or even a flow chart. When it comes to effective communication skills, nurses are considered the link between patients and other healthcare providers. They should, therefore, be effective communicators because their work involves communicating with other healthcare personnel when coordinating patient care. It is therefore important that you deliver your information concisely and logically because how you deliver a piece of information is just as important as the information itself. You need to be calm and composed when communicating with a patient and be reassuring when talking to family members.


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