The art of collaboration can generally enhance any career, but nurses can particularly benefit by collaborating with other colleagues in the healthcare field. When you collaborate with people throughout the hospital or your healthcare organization, you tap into a specialized network filled with the expert advice and know-how to help you advance your career and continue learning on the job. The following tips can help nurses benefit from the valuable resources that surround them and guide them toward the best choices and practices to fuel their career upwards.

Continuing Education Programs

Hospitals and hospital networks have in-house CE programs operating year-round. These workshops and lectures provide practitioners with the CE credits they need for license renewal. Be sure to take advantage of these credits. Often, these CE meetings are held during lunch breaks. Not only can you learn valuable information related to healthcare and patient care, you can meet and socialize with other medical colleagues—doctors and nurses—and lay the foundation for collaborative practices. The more you become a familiar fixture at these meetings, the more likely other staff members will take notice of your diligence and interest in furthering your education.

Distance Learning Opportunities

Many nurses are furthering their career by earning advanced degrees or certifications online. The internet makes continuing education coursework more convenient than ever before. You may want to discuss your distance learning plans with other nurses; these discussions may lead to collaborative projects or study groups that can help enhance your education. Discuss your plans with other medical staff members who may be able to offer valuable tips for furthering your career with an online degree.

Medical Colleagues

While hospitals are likely filled with formal resources to help you perform research and advance your career, sometimes a scheduled lunch date in the hospital cafeteria or a quick coffee break in a staff lounge can be a good time to collaborate. These collaborations may be simple in nature—how to improve RN scheduling for your floor, for instance, or they might be more involved such as implementing training for nurses’ aides. Whatever the case may be, these collaborations demonstrate your willingness to be involved for the betterment of your employer, your career, and ultimately, your patients.

Medical Library

Many hospitals are equipped with libraries filled with the latest and back issues of the most reputable medical journals. Many of these journals relate directly to the nursing profession. The medical librarian is a great person to collaborate with; this person knows the resources in the collection and is typically willing to order materials suggested by the medical staff including nurses. The library, moreover, has become more of a media and research center. Use your breaks to research the library’s databases or use internet stations to learn about new practices or issues that relate directly to you. If you are doing online coursework toward a nursing practitioner degree, for instance, your medical library will become a valuable tool; the library will easily insure the timely document delivery you need to perform necessary research.

Human Resources

HR staffers can be important collaborators when it comes to moving forward with your career. Let them know about the workshops or lectures you attend or if you are enrolled in a degree program. Often, this department prefers to hire from within its ranks; if you are on working toward a degree, they will often be able to promote you to a desired position on condition of your completed degree. Your colleagues in the HR department can provide you with advice about moving upwards in the healthcare industry and share important information about open or soon-to-be-open positions in their healthcare institution.

Author's Bio: 

John is an independent education researcher and freelance writer. He has recently been sharing his findings on higher education blogs.Click here for more information about online degrees.