Healthcare nurses at Malaysia Hospital

Do you have what it takes to be in healthcare?

A female doctor is smiling and taking caring for the patient.

Let’s face it. At some point, we might have wondered whether we have what it takes to be in healthcare. Or perhaps we went to a hospital, encountered some healthcare staff and made an assessment as to whether or not they were cut out for it, based on how we were treated.

In this regard, a successful career in health care requires more than just a top-notch degree or hands-on training program. Healthcare employers look at your resume more than just your professional expertise. It’s also necessary to improve your so-called “soft skills,” which can also be called “personality skills.” These are the personal qualities that you use to impact and strengthen the way you interact and relate to patients, colleagues, and peers.

Soft skills will have an effect on your job opportunities, work results, and other life activities. Your soft skills can help your career develop over time more than your technical skills in many careers like health care.

Essential skills for healthcare

A doctor is holding a patient's hand.
  • Empathy

It is important in healthcare that you are able to empathize with patients and the challenging circumstances that others face. It’s the ability to place one’s self in the shoes of another and feel what that person is going through and express their feelings and sensations.

This is acknowledgement and affirmation of the terror, anxiety, pain, and concern of a patient. This is the ability to consider the emotions of patients and to promote a more precise diagnosis and treatment. Expressing patient empathy truly promotes humanism in healthcare and is the top ingredient to improving patient interaction and patient encounters.

A sad Locat reminder.

“Acknowledging a patient’s pain can be very tough – so please remember to take care of your own feelings too!”

— Locat

A group of doctors having a discussion or meeting.
  • Communication Skills

Communication is the centre of many workplaces but it is even more critical for health care employees. In addition to regularly engaging with employers, health care professionals need to communicate with patients and their families. There are clear beneficial associations between the communication abilities of a health care team member and the willingness of a patient to follow up with medical advice, self-manage a chronic medical condition, and develop healthy habits.

Doctors hand to hand.
  • Teamwork

Teamwork is two or more people who interact with one common purpose interdependently, working towards tangible goals that benefit from leadership that maintains cohesion while fostering open discussion and problem-solving. A team player mentality is a significant characteristic of healthcare staff. Many areas of health care are like team sports, with plenty of people working for patient care. It is important that you know how to communicate with your peers for the best interest of the patient. As the name suggests, healthcare teamwork uses collaborative and improved collaboration strategies to broaden the conventional responsibilities of health workers and to take decisions as a unit to work towards a shared goal.

In a famous quote from the world-renowned Mayo Clinic, we know that ‘The best interest of the patient is the only interest to be considered”. When healthcare team members can work together, the fulfilment of this quote is best achieved.

A nurse is having a mental breakdown while she is at work.
  • Stress Management

Lives are at stake when it comes to working in healthcare. That is a lot of pressure to bear. Health care employees are at high risk of burnout if they do not have proper stress management methods, according to studies. Burnout is the experience of long-term fatigue and a reduced interest in work. Not only do the most effective healthcare staff know how to cope with distress, they even thrive on it.

Ongoing stress can manifest itself in a host of physical and psychological symptoms, including headaches, sleep disturbances, poor concentration, and depression. Therefore, it’s also critical for health care staff to have good stress management techniques and to know how to take space from their stressful jobs to prevent burnout. 

2D doctors and patients graphic.
  • Work Ethics

Work ethics is a collection of principles. Other work ethic elements include honesty, punctuality, overall attitude, and behaviour. Some organizations describe work ethic as a belief in the social value and importance of work and its intrinsic capacity to strengthen character. Because many fields of healthcare require hours that go beyond your standard 9-to-5 job, it’s vital that healthcare employees nurture a strong work ethic. Healthcare is an environment of tremendous demand. Long are the hours. The theme can be grim.

Before evaluating whether you have the correct soft healthcare skills, it’s crucial that you first consider what skills you already have. You may already be a great communicator but you are not always on top of time. You may know that you can maintain a good outlook and withstand criticism but you may be more empathetic.

How many of the skills do you have above? Which of these could you work on?

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