4 Tips to Help Male Nurses Succeed

May 22, 2013 in Nursing TIps

Group of Male Nurses

The idea of a “male nurse” used to be a concept that got snickers from people. Thankfully, male nurses are no longer the butt of many jokes. In fact, the number of men going into the nursing profession has steadily risen over the years. However, just as women have their fair share of gender related challenges when entering male dominated occupations, the same also applies to men looking for nursing jobs. But there are ways to take the tension out of the equation to help male nurses feel right at home in the healthcare industry.

Don’t Mix Work & Play

Translation: don’t date your coworkers! Common sense but, unfortunately, this cardinal rule continues to get broken–and often with bad results. Male nurses must understand that they are automatically stigmatized because of their gender and the profession they’ve chosen so they’d do well to be on their Ps and Qs at all times. This includes the way they interact with female coworkers.

If your choice to become a nurse is to meet women, pick another occupation. Keep it professional at all times. There is nothing wrong with being friendly but it is helpful to adopt the mindset that what you say, how you say it and what you do can be perceived differently in the workplace.

Get a Male Mentor

There’s nothing wrong with seeking a female mentor but male nurses will be able to relate much better to someone who knows exactly what they’re dealing with from a gender based perspective. Getting a male mentor is especially helpful for male nurses that are new to the workplace. A mentor is a go-to-person who can offer advice, guidance and answer any questions nurses may have. They often serve as a role model, which is a great way for male nurses to learn how to develop professionally, mentally and emotionally within their field.

Look for Male Nursing Organizations

Similar to the idea of seeking a male mentor, there are entire organizations dedicated to providing support, resources and networking opportunities just for male nurses. Becoming a member is one way to connect with other male nurses and develop long lasting friendships and working relationships.

While nurses of both genders encounter a lot of the same territory in the healthcare industry, there are certain areas that only other male nurses would understand and vice-versa. Joining a traditional nursing organization is definitely a good move but there’s nothing wrong with male nurses choosing to also join a male oriented group, should they feel the need.

Don’t Let Your Emotions Get the Best of You

Although male nurses are becoming more commonplace in healthcare, there are still those who aren’t used to the idea. There might come a time when a patient (mostly in the case of female patients) may not feel comfortable interacting with a male nurse, which could cause an awkward situation.

It is important that male nurses build a thick skin of sorts in order to not take such an occurrence personally or let it affect the way they treat/care for patients.

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