Online RN to MSN
Clinical Systems Leadership

Interpersonal skills aid nurses in numerous ways

A nurse relies on a number of things to make him or her successful. Whether it is attention to detail or education – many clinicians are seeing the benefits of achieving a Master of Science in Nursing – there are always job-related elements to improve upon. One of the most important requirements of people in the health-care field is the use of interpersonal skills.

What are interpersonal skills?

To work in the health-care industry, nurses need to be able to interact with their colleagues, superiors and patients properly, while also completing the tasks of their job effectively. Interpersonal skills can help clinicians handle the everyday obstacles of their career in a way that minimizes stress.

According to Udemy, there are 10 examples of these attributes that are crucial for health-care providers to possess:

1. Verbal communication
2. Nonverbal communication
3. Listening
4. Questioning
5. Manners
6. Problem solving
7. Social awareness
8. Self management
9. Responsibility and accountability
10. Assertiveness

Although these abilities are considered soft skills – meaning the best way to obtain them is to be born with them – clinicians can learn to develop them as well.

There are certain interpersonal skills every nurse should have.

Interpersonal education

Some nurses naturally have interpersonal skills, while others have to work a little harder to hone these critical talents. Although additional education, like a Master of Science in Nursing degree, could help, there are also other tactics health-care providers can utilize. Employing empathy, positivity, humor and practicing both active and reflexive listening strategies will enable nurses to improve their interpersonal talents.

There is no limit to how far one can cultivate these skills. Clinicians should continue to develop these abilities over the course of their careers, as they offer a wide array of benefits for health-care providers and patients alike.

Improved patient outcomes

The relationships a clinician has with his or her patients can range from easy to challenging. Differences in attitude and the severity of people’s conditions play a large part in these interactions. Yet, nurses have to make sure these relationships are as efficient and effective as possible, and interpersonal skills can help.

Being able to listen – without interruption – to a patient’s concerns, as well as asking the appropriate questions, can assist health-care providers in offering the best level of care and the correct course of treatment. As a result, putting these talents into practice in the workplace can lead to improved patient outcomes as well as increased patient satisfaction. Interpersonal skills can also enhance continuity of care and ensure patients are understood throughout their treatment.

Reduction of stress

Communication is key as a health-care provider. Not only do nurses need to meaningfully interact with their patients, but they need to establish a good rapport with their colleagues. Interpersonal skills can help in both of these potentially stressful relationships.

Being a clinician is a high-stress job. The physical tasks and emotional demands of the career can weigh heavily on people’s psychological health and wellness. Challenging patients and workplace bullying can make nursing even more stressful. Yet, interpersonal skills give health-care providers a wealth of resources to fall back on. Demonstrating assertiveness and self management will show peers that nurses are willing and able to take responsibility for their behaviors and actions. Social awareness, on the other hand, enables clinicians to focus on their own individual obligations as they relate to those of others. By understanding themselves fully, nurses can tailor their conversations and interactions with their peers.

Practicing interpersonal skills allows health-care providers to not only manage their stress, but reduce their feelings of anxiety in an effective manner.

Interpersonal skills can help nurses reduce both personal and patient stress.

To ensure they are successful in their careers, nurses should always look for elements of their job upon which they can improve. Attaining and enhancing their interpersonal skills is a strong place to start, as these talents can promote better workplace relationships, improve positive patient outcomes and reduce stress and anxiety. Getting a Master of Science in Nursing degree gives clinicians the knowledge they need to continue delivering the highest level of care to patients while also bettering themselves in the process.


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