I'm a BSN nursing student, and I also work part time as a CNA at a local nursing home. I greatly enjoy the patient population within LTC, and I envision myself working in this environment once I become a RN.
I am also aware that I'm interested in transitioning into nursing management once I've accrued enough experience. So here's my questions for you all: when is enough experience to take on a DON/ADON role? Also, have any of you heard of a DON transitioning and becoming a nursing home administrator?
Thanks everyone, as I'm excited to hear what you all have to say.
I've known plenty of DON's that have gone on to become an administrator. In fact, I was recently offered that opportunity myself and declined (I'm an empty nester with kids living out of state and I just can't commit myself for 3-4 years of remaining in this area). My current administrator, who I have a great respect for, had said to me that his only hesitation in transitioning me into the role was he questioned if I could really let go of the DON role and my "strong clinical role". And, he is correct. I've seen it more than once that the "new" administrator can't let the new DON be the DON without constant interference.
As far as transitioning into management, my best opinion is tip toe up the ladder. Staff nurse, unit manager, MDS, inservice director, ADON, DON. If you take a couple years, get a couple surveys under your belt and get a good sense of what all those other roles are doing I think you'll be more confident and more successful when you hit the DON role.
I agree with NASCAR. Work your way up so you understand what the staff is really going through. I've had many administrators tell me their job is far easier than being the DNS.