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What Qualities Make a Good Nurse?

  • Category: Careers
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  • Written By: Baton Rouge General
What Qualities Make a Good Nurse?

If you’re a nursing student, a new nurse or an experienced nurse looking to advance your career you may be wondering what qualities make up an excellent nurse. Nursing is known to be a highly rewarding and highly demanding career. It requires a specific skill set, and some skills may come more naturally than others. What makes a truly great nurse is the ability to bring your best qualities into the work environment and pair them with the skills you learned through your education.

Effective Communicator

Nurses act as a liaison between patients, families, doctors, and other members of the healthcare team. Excellent communication skills are critical to patient care and improving patient outcomes. Good communication among members of the healthcare team decreases the risk of errors in patient care. If you are looking to improve your communication skills remember to practice active listening, which includes understanding what a patient may say through non-verbal communication like body language.

Good Clinical Reasoning

Clinical reasoning refers to the assessment and management of patient issues at the point of care. It is one of the qualities of a good nurse that requires continuous learning. Nurses who lack clinical reasoning are more likely to have lapses in judgment leading to patient harm. A good way to strengthen this skill is to use the Clinical Reasoning Cycle that includes eight stages:

  1. Consider the patient
  2. Collect cues/information
  3. Process information
  4. Identify problems/issues
  5. Establish goals
  6. Take action
  7. Evaluate outcomes
  8. Reflect on process and new learning

A Love of Learning

The best nurses are lifelong learners. While nursing schools and programs provide the fundamental knowledge and skills for a career in nursing, great nurses never stop learning and understand that health care is an ever-evolving field. Continuing to learn does not mean you have to go back to school. You can stay engaged with changes in health care by joining nursing associations that often offer members continuing education opportunities.

Time Management Skills

The nature of a nurse's job is busy, stressful, and involves many people and responsibilities competing for priority. A nurse who can exercise good time management skills can effectively provide patient care and complete duties on time, positively impacting patient outcomes. You can easily improve your time management by taking a few simple steps. Prioritize your duties for the day, always communicate with your team, keep your workspace organized and focus on one task at a time.


Being a leader does not mean you have to be in a management position. Nurses who take the initiative to get things done, motivate others, and act as liaisons between patients and staff are excellent examples of leaders in nursing. Being a leader showcases the pride you take in the quality of care you provide.

At Baton Rouge General we offer you the tools to learn what you love about nursing, advance your career, and be the best nurse you can be. If you are interested in learning more about the professional development opportunities and incentives offered through a nursing career at BRG call or text a recruiter today at (985) 606-9061.