Motivation in the workplace is influenced by a set of complex economic, social and professional factors. There are several reasons why nurses are motivated in their job and continue to stay in it.

Generally, they will be motivated and have job satisfaction if they believe that they are effective in their jobs and are able to perform well. However, passion for providing patient care, being able to choose from several specialisations, the high demand for nurses as well as learning opportunities can also motivate one to be a nurse.

Here are four key reasons that nurses continue to fulfill their challenging roles despite the various pressures they are under. 

1. Passionate in caring for patients

According to the International Council of Nurses, one of the things that nursing encompasses is “autonomous and collaborative care of individuals of all ages, families, groups and communities, sick or well and in all settings.”

Often, one of the things that motivate nurses in their job is their passion in caring for their patients. Nurses often encounter different patient conditions in their career. The care that they provide to their patients makes a positive difference in the lives of patients and their families. Additionally, they enjoy their daily routine in dealing with various aspects of patient care.

2. Several specialisations to choose from

A motivating factor for some nurses is the many specialisations that they can choose. An individual must be aware of the various types of specialisations that are offered in nursing when doing her nursing studies. In Singapore, one can develop her nursing skills in several specialisations after becoming a registered nurse; some examples of these include community health, critical care, ear, nose and throat, emergency, gerontology, and palliative care. In total, there are 17 specialisations to choose from.

Hence, nurses can change specialties and move on to the healthcare specialty that suits them best. For instance, a nurse who likes children can choose to work in the paediatrics department; a nurse who likes being on hand to provide assistance in trauma cases can work in the emergency room. In fact, a positive aspect of nursing is that nurses can decide what they want to do based on their tolerance level and aptitude.

3. Ongoing demand for nurses

At present, there is a great demand for nurses; the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) projected that the demand for nurses will rise by 2020. Hence, this motivates nurses in their career, as the need for more nurses entails that the job opportunities in this career field will be astounding for the right candidates.

Additionally, changing demographics as well as the increased prevalence of chronic disease means there will be increased recruitment for Registered Nurses. According to the data provided in the Malaysian Human Resources for Health Country Profiles for 2014, the total number of nurses is 92,681 nurses, as combined with public and private sectors. However, by 2020, this country will require 130,000 qualified nurses, thus the demand for nurses is very high (Pillay, 2017).

4. Endless learning opportunities

Nurses get the opportunity to interact with doctors, patients, medical staff and administrators on a daily basis. This gives them the opportunity to learn from people of other careers and add to their knowledge base. At the same time, they can sharpen their interpersonal skills. Hence, this is one aspect of nursing that motivates people to pursue the career.

Additionally, nurses can work in different kinds on establishments, allowing them to gain exposure to unique work environments. For instance, nurses can choose to work in hospitals, schools, government agencies and so forth.

There is constant challenge and excitement in the life of a nurse. Every day is a new experience and brings on new learning. While the reasons why a nurse is motivated in her job are varied and depend entirely on the individual, it is indeed a rewarding career for all. MIMS

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Nurses: Developing and enhancing professionalism
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Pillay, S. (2017). Will Malaysia face a shortage of nurses by 2020? Retrieved from