I've been a dialysis technician for 15 years, and I'm currently in nursing school. Basically, you need to be an RN to go into management, which I will have a year from now. The higher ups want me in management as soon as possible, but I'm uneasy about it. 

I know I'd do well in management, but I went to nursing school to expand how much I can do for my patients, and not primarily to manage. 

My father-in-law was an electrical engineer for an energy company. He went on to be a VP for that company, but he hated that the more he was promoted, the further he was from engineering and he was just in meetings all day as a VP.

What's your recommendation on when and why to go into management and leave your "first love" behind?

SETM22's picture

It doesn't sound to me like management is what you want to do. If you're trying to talk yourself into it, I'd reconsider your approach. There is nothing wrong with staying an individual contributor.

As for your direct questions:

When should you go into management? When you decide you want to. Be sure to get the knowledge of how to be one. MT is one way of course!

Why go into management? Because you really, really, really like the idea of making the management of people the majority of your time at work. Really. Don't do it because someone says you should. Would you marry someone just because someone said you should? Is there really any gray area there? Well there isn't gray area in the decision to be a manager.

That said, you could be one of those managers who likes staying in the weeds... You know, still doing all those wonderful, fun tactical things but then trying to do all the things managers SHOULD be doing. Don't do that.

As a nurse, you'll have a lot of great career opportunities that don't involve management. If you have any doubts about being a manager, don't do it.

ZITTER's picture

It's not the matter of how long but it is the knowledge you have to handle management. Though experience is a key but knowledge is the factor that accelerates you.