What Is Your Ideal Job?


  • Long Term Care Columnist / Guide
    Specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych. Has 26 years experience.

To introduce this new forum, I'd like to ask you all to share your ideas for designing your perfect job---where you would work, what hours you'd like, your ideal staffing mix, even the physical layout of your facility (or if you work in the community, travel and commuting ideas). Money may or may not factor in; of course, we all need to live and pay our bills, but if we were looking to get rich we wouldn't have gone into nursing, would we?;)

After working in a hospital where I was micromanaged to death (and where I'd have been happy just to find all the telemetry supplies in one place:madface: ), managing care and resources in an assisted-living community is like Heaven to me. I also have a good deal of control over my work hours and days, take breaks when I want to, go to the bathroom when I need to, get up and walk around when I feel like it, and I can close the door to my office when I've got something I really need to concentrate on.

So, in an imperfect world, I think my job is as close to perfect as I'm ever going to get.........now it's YOUR turn! Feel free to be as creative as you want---after all, this is a fantasy, right? (We'll talk more later about how to turn that fantasy into reality.:idea: ) Enjoy!

JentheRN05, RN

857 Posts

Specializes in OB, ortho/neuro, home care, office.

Actually I HAVE my ideal job. I love it. I work in a doctors office, start IV's all day long and monitor patients. Do holistic work as well :) The ONLY part of it I don't like is I'm not paid quite well enough, afterall I am not only a nurse but a holistic practitioner, but the doctor I work for just bought a new building and is struggling to pay the bills, so...... since I love my job so much it's worth it. However, I may end up finding another source of income on the side to make up the difference. I have come up with some minor home care ideas (with the help of my nurse mom) so I am going to put those into action in the coming weeks ;)


262 Posts

Specializes in MDS coordinator, hospice, ortho/ neuro.

I am an MDS co-ordinator.......it's a M-F job, no weekends, no on-call. I like the work, and I used to love my job but we've had so many management unheavals in the past 2 years that I can't say I have any faith in my bosses at this point in time.

For me the perfect job would be:

  • realistic work load ( not too busy, but enough to keep me busy all day)
  • clear understanding of management's expectations
  • good, supportive managers above me ( my last DON was the most pathological personality I've ever met;there are days that I wonder if my administrator has any idea of what is going on or cares)
  • fair, consistent enforcement of policy
  • decent pay& benefits
  • non-tolerance of 'princesses'
  • reasonable notice of changes in policy / expectations with ability to voice feedback


20,964 Posts

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis. Has 26 years experience.

I have it, or as close to it as can be.

I feel my job as an OB nurse is the best. I get the privelege of seeing new lives and families born. Yea, I am a sucker for it---I still cry at every birth or come close to it. It's my dream job---the one I went into nursing FOR!

I like the post before mine. Very well-articulated description of the close-to-ideal job!!!

Gompers, BSN, RN

2,691 Posts

Specializes in NICU.

We all joke at work that being 0.1 would be perfect, LOL!

But seriously, I really love my job. The only things that would make it better would be...

Unit make-over - our decor and equiptment are embarassingly late 70's-early 80's!!!

No weekend shifts. Ever.

11am-11pm would be perfect for me - get to sleep in until 9am, but am on the way home by midnight. So *almost* normal hours but without having to wake up at the crack of dawn. Sure, the days I'd work would be ALL work...but on the four days a week I'm off, I'd never have to "recover" like I do from nights.


127 Posts

I had the perfect job. It was as Nurse Consultant for a pharmacy. The pharmacy manager was able to hand pick everyone on the staff. We had all worked together at other places so we were like an extended family. I was the only nurse in the company and got to set my own hours and days. I only had to put in 40 hours a week. I got to write my own job description too. I was free to do pretty much what ever I wanted. Unfortunately good things never last long enough and corporate sold us to competetor who took our business and shut us down. :angryfire

Nurse Valium

50 Posts

Okay, I'll bite - my ideal job, being "free to be as creative as I want", is one that allows me to stay home all day, everyday, hanging out with my two year old and pick my paycheck up from the mailbox every Friday;)

CseMgr1, ASN, RN

1,287 Posts

Specializes in Case Management, Home Health, UM. Has 39 years experience.

I had an ideal job back in 1982-1983, when I was the Field Supervisor of a Home Care Agency. My boss was a gem, giving me COMPLETE autonomy to do my job, and she didn't care how I did it, as long as I didn't work over 24 hours a week. It came to an end when my husband walked out on me and our then five-year-old son. I had to move and find full-time work, in order to support him. :o

UM Review RN, ASN, RN

7 Articles; 5,163 Posts

Specializes in Utilization Management.
Okay, I'll bite - my ideal job, being "free to be as creative as I want", is one that allows me to stay home all day, everyday, hanging out with my two year old and pick my paycheck up from the mailbox every Friday;)

(It's so ironic that being a stay-at-home mom nearly drove me nuts, which is why I went to nursing school.)

My ideal job would be to move to day shift. With day shift getting a better salary and less patient load.

I'd also like computerized charting, but each nurse would have her/his own personal PDA (left at work of course) and you'd set it up to your liking. For instance, I would choose a certain color code for meds that are given at a certain time, or for those that need a lab beforehand, with a reminder bell for each patient so I can get their IV meds flushed and their other timed stuff done--like frequent vitals and such.

Icons would be good too. That'd separate the wound care stuff from the meds.

And a call the doc icon would also be cool, with ability to access a contact list and dial from the PDA.

(Now I'm drooling.)

I can imagine myself running through the halls with a PDA that's voice activated and takes notes on the fly (with a time/date stamp) for assessments, AND THEN CONVERTS IT TO TEXT, like some of the voice-graphic programs that are available. Then I'd just double-check the spelling

and insert in the appropriate parts of the chart.

It'd free me up to do more interactive care with the patients.

Also, I would like it if they would stop shoving clerical duties off on nurses, and let nurses be nurses, instead of all the ancillary staff. I do way too much paperwork compared to patient care.

I cannot monitor my patients while I'm at the desk entering orders that should've been entered by the US on a different shift.

I would also like cheaper benefits and get more medical and dental. I think our dental insurance is terrible. It doesn't include much and it's certainly not affordable care, even with insurance. Our medical insurance is way too expensive regardless. I really don't enjoy looking around a gorgeous, marbled lobby to get up to a patient room that has no sink in the bathroom (that HAD to be designed by a man!) and no room for the equipment and no place to store supplies that would make our jobs more efficient.

Oh, and PLEASE! let us keep the thermostat at a level that we can work in for gawd's sake without wanting to die from heat exhaustion.

I can handle an 8-hour shift, but not a 12, so I wish that there was a shift for those of us who want to work 4 ten-hour days a week. I have no idea how that would work IRL, and it looks like it would certainly up the insanity level for the schedulers, but you said anything goes, so I offered it up.


105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience.

The "perfect" nurse educator position: nine month contract (summers off, with opportunity to work part time as a staff nurse on a unit of one's choice to stay current in one's area of expertise, or to pursue further educational opportunites, or to delve into nursing research, or to write and publish scholarly articles); pay at least on a parity with hospital nursing; a stable curriculum load with adequate support; a professional and collegial atmosphere in which creativity and collective brainstorming is encouraged; a positive, student-friendly, learner-centered environment; the luxury of being able to hone two or three areas of expertise in teaching (instead of being responsible for multiple course content); plenty of grant money available to fund educational pursuits (research projects, certifications, seminars, MSN-Nurse Educator, PhD in Nursing Education); only being responsible for clinical groups in one (or at the most) two clinical sites :)


1 Post

my ideal job is enjoying every minute of the work. having fun at the same time. doing work as a part of your life and not just simply work. working on hours as to not sacrificing most of family time. earning enough or more. caring for patients. becoming what a nurse really is.;)


30 Posts

Thank goodness someone else is thinking like me, what a relief! I also dream of using PDA's to help us organize patient care and documentation.

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