Many organizations, events, concepts, and theoretical frameworks drive innovation and advancement in nursing. With our profession currently reeling from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, there couldn’t be a better time for nurses to gather together and envision the future. The annual Magnet Conference is one such event that allows nurses to convene for a moment of mutual understanding and forward thinking.
Forward Movement in Nursing
To strive for excellence in nursing, whether in leadership, clinical research, patient care, entrepreneurship, or any virtually limitless career avenues for curious nurses.
Evidence-based practices are central to Magnet. Unfortunately, without focusing on the emerging evidence, we would rely on eight very dangerous words: “But that’s the way we’ve always done it.”
Conferences like Magnet attract nurses interested in forwarding movement, not the status quo. Nurses don’t attend conferences to learn how everything should remain the same. Instead, nurses are drawn to asking what can be done better, more efficiently, and more safely.
Gatherings of nurses interested in momentum, innovation, and camaraderie are like a proverbial shot in the arm that many crave. This is why Magnet is a gathering so many greatly anticipate.
Healing and Growing
The pandemic has taken a toll on nursing, just as on every other sector of a global society. Even now, it seems like the entire world is understaffed and on backorder, and healthcare is no stranger to this phenomenon.
We may have been called “heroes” ad nauseum throughout the worst months of this global debacle (although I would greatly prefer the word “warriors”), but we can’t rest on our laurels and consider a job well done — there’s far too much to accomplish.
The nursing shortage continues to rear its ugly head, and nurse attrition from the profession is high. A shortfall of more than 400,000 nurses in the near future isn’t just a nightmare — it may be our reality. And even if it’s only partially accurate that as many as two-thirds of nurses are considering leaving the profession in the next two years, that’s an unsustainable loss.
This point in the pandemic has given us a few moments to assess the damage, pick up the pieces, and dust ourselves off, but we also acknowledge that there’s much work still to be done once we’ve licked our collective wounds.
Healing those wounds takes a community. Growing our ranks by creating safe and healthy workplaces where nurses feel valued, honored, and recognized can go a long way toward stemming the hemorrhage of talent poised to leave nursing behind.
Perhaps one way to honor, value, and recognize nurses in the context of community is to bring us together at events where we can look one another in the eye, see how we need to grow and where we need to heal, and then roll up our sleeves for the task at hand.
Magnet Celebrates the Power of Connection
When we connect deeply and take the time to acknowledge those who’ve made sacrifices for the good of the whole, contributed to the body of literature, advanced the profession, suffered moral or physical injury, or perhaps even given their lives, we empower one another to be the kinds of nurses who stand up for our beloved profession and the patients we serve.
Some nurses have been beaten down over the last few years; still, others have managed to thrive amid the chaos, confusion, and difficulties. The nursing profession is at a turning point, and we must take stock of where we are to move ahead.
The power of connection can occur over a video call. Still, there’s nothing like meeting with like-minded colleagues who can capture the imagination and empower creative forward-thinking. Inspiration from others can empower us to take ownership of our own professional story — and when we’re in charge of our own story, we feel better about the road we’re on. As a result, we can contribute much more to the collective good.
Scores of nurses will attend Magnet this year, and many will return to their workplaces inspired, reinvigorated, and ready to tackle the challenges ahead. Nursing may sometimes be down, but there are assuredly still thousands of nurses ready to see our profession through to a brighter day. Are you?
Daily Nurse is thrilled to welcome Keith Carlson, “Nurse Keith,” a well-known nurse career coach and podcaster of The Nurse Keith Show as a guest columnist. Check back every other Thursday for Keith’s column.