Top 6 Social Media Tips for Travel Nurses
By Jennifer Larson, contributor
Social media has become a way of life for many of us.
You follow your favorite celebrities and personalities on Instagram. You send messages and photos to your best pals via Snapchat. You share pictures of your pets on Facebook and subscribe to your favorite channels on YouTube. You search for a date through Tinder, OkCupid or Coffee Meets Bagel.
And if you’re working away from home on a travel nursing assignment, your phone or your tablet is your conduit to your friends and family back home. Social media helps you stay connected.
But just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean that you can temporarily shelve your good social media usage habits. In fact, you probably need to be even more judicious about what you share online.
Here are some tips for smart social media use by travel nurses on assignment:
1. Be careful where you reveal you’re away from home. If you have a roommate or a spouse staying in your home while you’re away on a travel nursing job, this might not matter as much. But if your home is unoccupied during your travel nursing assignment, you might not want to post in a public forum that no one’s home. Check your privacy settings on your social media accounts, too, to make sure that only people you know can see what you post.
2. Don’t post information or pictures about your patients. This standard advice for healthcare professionals using social media is even more important for travel nurses on assignment. You might be tempted to gossip with a few close friends on a privacy-protected social media platform, but as we all know, that information can still get out and do damage. Protect your patients’ privacy and don’t post anything about them at all.
3. Don’t vent about your coworkers or supervisors on any social media platforms. Would you want your current boss or your future boss to read something that puts you in an unfavorable light? If your answer is no, then refrain from venting online or posting anything negative about your managers or coworkers at your travel nursing job. “Venting about job-related issues on social media is unprofessional and should be avoided,” said Carrie Silvers, MSN, RN, a faculty member who works with the online MSN program at the University of Arizona.
You might feel better after venting, but it could come back to haunt you later. Plus, you might want to extend and take another travel nursing assignment at your current location, and you don’t want to risk that opportunity for the sake of a momentary vent.
4. Do share some of your adventures. If you’ve loved some of the adventures that your assignment has allowed you to have during your off time, by all means, let people know! “Travel nurses have a wonderful opportunity to share experiences related to their travels,” noted Silvers. “They can discuss their location and their experiences sightseeing.”
5. Keep learning. Want to impress your supervisor at your current travel nursing assignment and maybe land another assignment? Stay on top of your nursing game by following influential healthcare leaders on Twitter, reading articles and other healthcare info posted online, and participating in discussions that can help you deepen your knowledge base.
6. Connect with other travelers. It can be a lot of fun, sharing stories from the road with other travel nurses. You can network with other travelers, ask for advice, learn more about places that other travelers have visited, and so on. (This can also be a great way for first-time travelers to find out what to expect—and what to pack—from seasoned travelers!) Start by checking out TravelNursing.com’s Facebook page and letting us know what you’re up to.
TravelNursing.com’s staffing partners are available to answer your questions about travel nursing jobs across the country. Apply today to get started!