• 14 July 2021
  • 8 min read

How To Become A Senior Nurse

  • Claire Carmichael
    Adult Nurse - General Practice Nurse
    • Mat Martin
    • Laura Bosworth
    • Richard Gill
    • Aubrey Hollebon
    • Aisha Seidu Peligah
  • 0
  • 528
Play video: "Just show your passion, get motivated, get the support behind you and just go for it."

GP Nurse, Claire, explains how to advance your nursing career and become a Senior Nurse and why building a rapport with your colleagues is key.

Topics covered in this article

Introduction

Build A Rapport With Your Colleagues

Visit Different Organisations

Ask Your Employer About Mentoring & Coaching

Research The Role

Have A Look At Trainee Roles

Introduction

Hi, everyone, this blog is all about how to become a Senior Nurse.

A lot of job posts ask for post-qualification experience, sometimes one year, two years, three years.

However, it's not 100% necessary, and some will take you on after a few months, six months, for example.

I have seen this personally on social media, where people have been newly qualified nurses, they're qualified for six months and then they've moved up into a Band 6 position, for example.

So it just very much depends on the role that you're going for, your experience, what they're expecting, because every single person and every single area will be completely different.

And if you're the sort of person where all of the staff always come to you asking you questions, asking for advice, and you want that more autonomy, you want that little bit more responsibility, then a senior role is gonna be perfect for you.

Nursing & Care Jobs at Nurses.co.uk

Progress Your Career. Search 1000s of Nursing & Care Jobs

Search Jobs

Build A Rapport With Your Colleagues

That leads me very nicely on to my first tip, actually, so if you've got people asking for advice and questions and things like that, that's really good.

That means you're building a rapport with the people around you, and that's what you want, really, you wanna build a good rapport and get that character building and team working together.

Also, you can volunteer to do extra little shifts.

You can volunteer to take charge for the day, maybe, to shadow the matrons, to shadow the managers, to shadow the chief executive, if you want to.

Doing these little things are gonna look really, really good on the CV or the application, as well, but also give you a little bit more insight into the role and how it runs and how it works.

Visit Different Organisations

Another thing you can do is contact organisations, companies, different areas, and ask if you can go in and shadow or do like an informal sort of visit as well.

To get a feel for the area, get to know people, get to meet people, see what the area is like, see what sort of roles there are around, in different fields of nursing and things like that as well, just to give you a really good all-around view of things.

Another thing that I've always done is look at the job person specification on roles.

I've been doing this all the time as well.

I always look for lead nurse roles and things like that, and I go, "Okay, what's expected of me if I ever wanted this sort of position?".

And I will look at what they want, and then you can set yourself a little targets and how you can get there, paving your way for your future, or the now if you've got it now.

So for example, one job specification that I looked at, they were asking for a master's level, and that was for a primary care lead nurse in my area.

So to get that sort of role, I would then have to go and do a master's, so that would be my little stepping stone to go and do something like that, to be able to do something like that.

I hope that makes sense, but you can just gauge from the overall person spec, what you need to do and how to get there.

Ask Your Employer About Mentoring & Coaching

You could also speak to your employer and see if they do any form of like mentoring or coaching sort of things, where you can sit with people, they can mentor you.

That's a really, really good idea as well.

I have learned much from other people, like just from networking on Twitter and social media and making these little contacts and just observing how they are, how they connect with people, how they network.

It's just so fascinating to learn from other people, and that's one thing that I do advise massively as well, is just get out there and network with people.

And also get support from your management.

So, we have our one-to-ones, we have our clinical supervisions, we have our revalidation, we have our appraisals every year.

Sit there and say, "This is what I wanna do. This is my career goals. How can I get there?".

---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ----------

Do you have any questions about becoming a Senior Nurse?

Ask Claire your questions below

---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ----------

And they should put things in there to support you, develop and progress in there, because at the end of the day, they ought to keep you for as long as possible in that job role.

It's in their best interest to sort of progress you, help you grow, give you all the training you need, and help you get to that level that you wanna be, because otherwise, you're gonna look elsewhere.

If they know that that's where you wanna be and they're not giving you that, you're gonna be looking at other job vacancies, let's face it.

So it's really important that you make them aware of that, and hopefully they will help you out.

Research The Role

And also, I wanted to add in, not just senior roles, but if it's a specialist specific role, for example, sexual health is very specific, and how would you get that sort of role if you have no experience?

Here are some tips.

Do all of the revision and research that you possibly physically can.

Get the laptop, get the computer out, speak to people in that area, ask them about the job role, what it involves, all of that, look at research papers on what's going on in that area.

So, sexual health, again, is a really good example.

There's so much research out there for all the different sexual infections, for contraceptions, there's loads out there.

The same if you wanted to be a respiratory specialist nurse, for example, there's so much research out there.

Have a look at it, get really, really knowledgeable in that area.

And if you're, let's just say, you're working somewhere, so for me in general practice, and I feel like there's a gap missing for sexual health, for example, between sexual health services and general practice, I could maybe volunteer to be like that link between the two.

I could put forward some really good ideas to sort of help out the practice, but help out sexual health as well.

And doing these little things can really help you build networks.

Also, it just looks really, really good on your CV or your application as well, that you're doing these little bits to help gain more knowledge, but you're also putting things into practice as well.

And again, just doing some voluntary shifts and shadowing other nurses in specialist areas can be really good.

But also maybe joining the bank, to do extra shifts there, get your face known, build up that good rapport with people, again, and just create those really good networks.

I think networking is really key for things like this, because sometimes it's not what you know, it's who you know, as well, and it's really good to build rapports with people, get networking, but also retain all of that knowledge as well.

Have A Look At Trainee Roles

And also have look at the trainee roles.

I've seen this out there in job sites and things like that.

There are some trainee roles out there, like a trainee advanced clinical practitioner.

They will train you up, they'll put you on the courses needed for the role.

That can be really, really good as well, because then you're gonna get funded for all of your training, but then you're gonna be doing the job that you really wanna do at the same time.

It's a win-win situation.

Also, there was something that was going around on social media that I saw, it was like an apprentice chief exec sort of position.

So you'd go and you would shadow the chief exec and just get a little bit more experience about what they do, how they manage things.

And that's a really, really, another good way of doing things.

And my last little piece of advice is, if there's any leadership and mentoring, coaching, that sort of training going on, get yourself booked into it because that's gonna look really, really good on your CV, or your interview.

It show that you're actively doing these leadership courses or these programs for mentoring and coaching.

It's an extra little thing under your belt, it's a thing that's gonna make you stand out, and it's a proactive thing that you're showing that you want to do that sort of role as well.

But all in all, if you're gonna go for something like that, and you're a really hard worker, you're passionate, you're motivated, and they see that that's the sort of person you are, they're gonna snap you up like that.

Because you're showing that your worth ethic and how you work as a nurse, so just, yeah, just show your passion, get motivated, get the support behind you and just go for it.

Good luck!

---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ----------

Do you have any questions about becoming a Senior Nurse?

Ask Claire your questions below

---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ----------

About the author

  • Claire Carmichael
    Adult Nurse - General Practice Nurse

I am a qualified Adult Nurse, working as a General Practice Nurse. I believe that nursing gets a lot of bad press, so I create blogs and vlogs to help anyone considering their nursing career and to create positivity surrounding our profession as I'm so passionate about nursing.

See all of our RGN jobs

7123 jobs currently available

Search Jobs

Care Professionals Helping One Another

We pay people like you to contribute, so that everyone can share. Learn & never miss out on updates & career advice. Join to support our mission.

  • Claire Carmichael
    Adult Nurse - General Practice Nurse

About the author

  • Claire Carmichael
    Adult Nurse - General Practice Nurse

I am a qualified Adult Nurse, working as a General Practice Nurse. I believe that nursing gets a lot of bad press, so I create blogs and vlogs to help anyone considering their nursing career and to create positivity surrounding our profession as I'm so passionate about nursing.

  • 0 Comments
Want to get involved in the discussion
Sign In Join