Wanted: Nurse Entrepreneurs

5 Crazy Good Reasons for Nurses to Become Entrepreneurs

RNs who are tired of enduring exhausting hours, little respect and low pay in their RN jobs don’t have to feel stuck. In this blog eight successful nurse entrepreneurs share 5 crazy good reasons to become a nurse entrepreneur.

  1. You’re free to work as much or as little as you want.

“Owning my own business as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant has changed my life and my family’s. Each and every day I have choices and I enjoy the freedom of being able to choose. I can choose to work a short day, a long day, or not at all. I have control over my calendar, my appointments, and the option to say yes or no. Nurses in a traditional RN job have none of these freedoms. I recall being boxed into the employer’s time, schedule, policies, procedures, requirements and the rest of whoopla that went along with the healthcare system.

Don’t get me wrong; I am still bound to deadlines as a nurse entrepreneur. But guess what? I control how I manage my time to meet or beat that deadline for my clients. There is nothing more freeing! Laying on a beach in Hawaii is the ultimate freeing moment for me! Which brings me back to my first point. Having these choices has changed the way I use my time and the time I devote to family for the best.”

– Suzanne Arragg, RN, BSN, CDONA/LTC, CLNC

  1. You grow both personally and professionally.

“Being a nurse entrepreneur has changed me both professionally and personally. If I hadn’t become a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant, I wouldn’t have been able to continue working at a traditional RN job because of physical limitations. I absolutely loved working clinically, but there were times when I found myself in a rut. I became very comfortable working on an oncology unit. I worked hard to learn my job responsibilities and became certified to administer chemotherapy. But after years of doing the same thing, I started to lose excitement for learning. I remember looking at job postings and thinking it would be nice to do something different, but never applied because I was afraid to make a change. I was destined to join the ranks of the ‘old nurses’. Everyone knows the type of RN I’m talking about. They drag themselves into work. They never smile and constantly complain about everything. They are Bitter Berthas. Looking back, I can see that my boredom was complacency. I wasn’t challenged by my RN job at the hospital and had lost interest in learning. Once I took the leap of faith to become a nurse entrepreneur my excitement returned.

Owning my legal nurse consulting business has allowed me to work at home while still having a successful career. My kids were young when I became a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant so I am lucky that I was able to be there for them every step of the way. I was a room mother and able to go on field trips often. My kid’s classmates would say they wished their mom could be there. It always broke my heart when they said that. When the children were older, I was always there when they got home from school. In a time when most people have to work away from home, I was fortunate to be able to work from home. Professionally, I am much more motivated and goal oriented.”

– Jane Hurst, RN, CLNC

“As a nurse entrepreneur, success or failure is all yours. It’s a powerful thing to say you are the CEO. People pay attention. What matters, though, is not so much that you are the CEO. What matters is the kind of CEO you are. That’s what clients remember.”

– Camille Joyner, RN, BSN, CCM, CLNC

  1. You amplify your independence and confidence.

“Being a nurse entrepreneur changed me in many ways. I feel a real sense of accomplishment on a far greater scale than prior to owning my business as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant. It gave me flexibility and freedom that I cherish and appreciate. I have a sense of empowerment and control over my life. Those close to me would describe me as fiercely independent and self-assured. I credit that to owning my CLNC business and being my own boss.”

– Dale Barnes, RN, MSN, PHN, CLNC

“Being a nurse entrepreneur has made me more confident, well balanced and stronger as a woman, mother, wife and RN. I possess a huge sense of accomplishment and pride. Nothing feels more powerful than knowing I have been able to grow my business as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant. I continue to flourish with repeat business from existing attorney-clients and referrals to new attorney-clients. I just secured four new cases in the last two weeks with three of them coming as a result of satisfied attorney-clients who value my CLNC® services and view me as a valued member of their litigation team. It can be crazy sometimes juggling all the roles I have, but I thrive on it. I love the variety I experience in life which being a successful nurse entrepreneur affords me. I love the balance and freedom I enjoy. I have enriched myself as a person by owning my CLNC business and am a woman on fire!”

– Julie Somen-Becker, RN, BSN, CLNC

  1. You can speak up without being punished or ostracized.

“In my RN jobs at hospitals I would voice my opinions only to be told I was wrong or, even worse, ignored. My impatience and stubbornness eventually would lead to burnout and I would leave. As my RN career at the bedside lengthened, my time in positions seemed to shorten.

When I review a case as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant, I always hear Vickie in my head saying, “Take a stand. Never be wishy-washy.” I love the verbal swordplay that occurs with my attorney-clients. They are constantly challenging my opinion but, unlike my physicians and supervisors at hospitals, attorneys listen to what I say and respect me for my opinions even when I disagree.

My husband and family love that I am more patient and truly joyful because of my CLNC business. Instead of coming home physically, mentally and emotionally drained, I am energized and happy as a nurse entrepreneur.”

– Susan Schaab, RN, BSN, CLNC

“In 2006, when I decided to become a nurse entrepreneur, I did not make this decision lightly. I had been looking for a career change, but I did not want something that would make me feel like a fish out of water. Being a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant was, as far as I could see, a way to have the best of both worlds. I could be my own boss, work when I wanted and do something I loved. The decision certainly has paid off.

The idea that someone is actually interested in my opinion and my 25 years of nursing experience gives me a great sense of pride. In nursing we have all felt overworked, underpaid and as if no one really cared what we thought. Now I consult with attorneys who actually listen and say ‘thank you’.

This is like the eighth wonder of the world.”

– Mildred Mannion, RN, BSN, CNOR, CLNC

  1. You are compensated financially as the professional you are.

“Being a nurse entrepreneur has allowed me the flexibility to have an absolutely perfect lifestyle. When I decided it was time to leave my RN job at the hospital 11 years ago, it was not because I didn’t love my position as a senior vice president for patient care services. It was because the job was 7 days a week 365 days a year. I was perpetually worried about patients and the wonderful nurses who cared for them.

Success came easily for me as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant. I had many contacts in the medical malpractice field and Vickie crammed an awful lot into the CLNC Certification Program.

My CLNC business has been everything I hoped it would be with extremely rewarding and just compensation. Being paid what I am worth has allowed me to return to teaching one day a week without giving the low salary a second thought. Last week I was talking to one of my attorney-clients and we laughed as I told him that I feel stressed approximately four times a year instead of four times a day like I used to.

Most importantly, I have not missed a school play, soccer, football or basketball game. I recently was the only “Granny” chaperone at my granddaughter’s kindergarten pumpkin picking outing. My husband and I vacation often with my sister and a great friend! I couldn’t have asked for more!”

– Margaret Gallagher, RN, BSN, MSN, CLNC

“I am preparing for a two week trip to Hawaii. Since I am my own boss now, I can plan how much work I want to do and when I want to do it. I can plan when I want to take a vacation or a mental health day. It is pretty simple – I have a computer and I can travel. I never miss any opportunity to work on an airplane, in an airport or waiting for a shuttle. It all becomes billable time and allows me to have a wonderful exotic vacation without feeling any financial guilt.

Being a nurse entrepreneur certainly has its benefits!”

– Mildred Mannion, RN, BSN, CNOR, CLNC

As these RNs demonstrate, nurses make perfect entrepreneurs and these are just some of the crazy good reasons to choose entrepreneurship for your next nursing adventure.

I’m Just Sayin’

P.S. Comment and share more crazy good reasons for nurses to become entrepreneurs.

4 replies
  1. Stephanie Mays, RN
    Stephanie Mays, RN says:

    I am encouraged by these stories and can’t wait to get my CLNC® certification and start my life as a nurse entrepreneur! Come on Orlando!!

  2. Rosie Hughes, MSN, RN, CLNC
    Rosie Hughes, MSN, RN, CLNC says:

    Go for it Stephanie! I loved the CLNC® 6-Day Certification Seminar in Orlando. These people are awesome – especially Vickie.

  3. Peg Gallagher
    Peg Gallagher says:

    Just a real life follow-up from one of the authors. I am currently working in Aruba for the month of February! The flexibility and rewards of being a CLNC® consultant are awesome. Thanks Vickie. Michael and I look forward to returning here during the 2015 NACLNC® Conference Cruise.


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