What skills are Healthcare employers looking for?
Before you embark on a new career it is important to identify the skills that you will need to develop. Some of these skills will be specific to the job you will be doing while others will require more general skills.
If you are looking for a 9 to 5 job then neither the health or care sector is for you. The working hours can be-and often are- long and health care professionals need to demonstrate their commitment to their patients and colleagues by being prepared to work beyond their contracted hours when the need arises.
And that’s where being able to work as part of a team comes in. You may become the greatest surgeon in the history of mankind but your personal success will owe a lot to the team you work with, they can help make you shine and also make your life a lot easier.
As you move through the ranks in your career you will be expected to undertake further study to increase your knowledge and enhance your skill set, so you need to be dedicated not just to the job you do every day but continuous professional development.
Your ability to cope with the physical and mental stress of your job is crucial. Physical stress can come in the form of spending long hours on your feet while the emotional side will be in dealing with people at their most vulnerable. So you will need to be patient, tolerant of others, empathic and be able to remain mentally resilient whilst not letting your emotions cloud your judgement.
Of course you will need to be quick at adapting to new technology. From radiologists and chiropractors to nurses and dentists you will have innumerate tools that you will need to become an expert of.
With less emphasis on technical know-how all of the attributes above are shared by social care sector workers. These are the people who deal with some of the most vulnerable people in society and as such, they need a range of unique skills that see them taking on the role of counsellor, problem solver, adviser, carer and sounding-board for people to vent their spleen – all in one.
You will need to have a thorough understanding of how the law operates, the rights of the people you work with, compassion for others and an open mind which is prepared to challenge your own preconceptions.