“If you’re considering supplementing your RN income with a part-time legal nurse consultant salary you’ve probably thought: ‘How do I ever get started?’ As Mark Twain said: ‘The secret of getting ahead is getting started.’ ”
– Vickie L. Milazzo
RN, MSN, JD
If you’re considering supplementing your RN income with a part-time legal nurse consultant salary you’ve probably thought: “How do I ever get started?” As Mark Twain said: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”
As a registered nurse, you’ve already undertaken one of the most stressful and challenging jobs in the world. With legal nurse consulting you’re not learning a brand new nursing specialty, you’re building upon your existing expertise as a registered nurse.
Becoming a legal nurse consultant doesn’t have to be all or nothing. In fact, we don’t recommend you quit your day job quite yet. But you certainly can, and should, get started part time.
Part-Time v Full-Time Legal Nurse Consultant Salary
Advantages of a part-time legal nurse consultant salary:
- You risk nothing financially. In fact, you have the opportunity to supplement your RN income while building your legal nurse consulting business at a pace that you’re completely comfortable with.
- You define your goals and work as many or as few hours as you choose.
- You can remain connected to the healthcare system if you’re not yet ready to break away from clinical nursing.
Advantages of a full-time legal nurse consultant salary:
- Your time won’t be divided and you’ll be able to devote all your effort toward building your legal nurse consulting business.
- There is a greater opportunity for financial prosperity because a legal nurse consultant salary is higher than an RN salary.
- You’ll have normal hours and not have to juggle two jobs.
- You’ll have more flexibility and control over your life and your nursing career.
Assess the Payoff
After just six years in my RN job at the hospital I faced the facts: I’m in a dead-end job. With my limited RN salary, I’m going to have to work overtime the rest of my life just to pay my mortgage. And I’m way too mouthy and opinionated to work for a hospital institution. Sound familiar?
I still wanted to be a registered nurse. I just wanted to practice nursing on my own terms. I wanted to be my own boss, make my own rules. So I seized my dissatisfaction and turned my six years of nursing experience into a legal nurse consulting business. My first goal was to supplement my RN income with a part-time legal nurse consultant salary.
Here’s what I knew: I was going to work hard for the next 40 years as an RN anyway, so I was willing to buck-up and work really hard managing a full-time RN job at the hospital and a part-time legal nurse consultant job to position myself for the future.
I could see the payoff:
- The ability to pay my mortgage without worry.
- Work-life balance with weekends and holidays off.
- Emotional and intellectual satisfaction working with attorneys on medical-related cases.
- Compensated and treated as a professional by attorneys.
- Respected by attorneys.
Assessing the payoff is the first step to supplementing your RN income with a part-time legal nurse consultant salary. You have to believe the payoff is worth it to successfully proceed with the next six steps.
Set a Goal for Your Part-Time Legal Nurse Consultant Salary
Go through a recognized legal nurse consultant program. Even though you’re consulting part time, you can’t have a part-time attitude. The attorney who gives you the first case could be your most important client.
Once certified, you start with one case and one attorney-client. The goal is to supplement your income and grow your business – one attorney at a time. Then establish a monthly goal for your legal nurse consultant salary and a plan for achieving your goal.
Don’t underestimate the value of starting part time. Annmarie Johnson earned $10,000* in one month consulting with attorneys part time. Part-time consulting can be a lucrative way to get started.
Take Advantage of 12-hr Shifts
RNs who work 12-hr shifts are the envy of legal nurse consultants who started part-time businesses before the evolution of 12-hr shifts. Use your four free days to market to attorneys and work your business. The time off is the perfect opportunity to implement your plan and achieve the goals you set for your part-time legal nurse consultant salary.
Treat Your Part-Time Legal Nurse Consulting Business as a Business – Not a Hobby
Yes, you’re consulting part time, but you can’t have a part-time mindset. Work a specific schedule like you would any job, e.g., 9 to 5. Create boundaries between home and office. Put intention behind your goals. Call a family meeting and ask for help.
My motto is “Nurses can do anything!” not “Nurses should do everything.” Reduce overtime in your RN job at the hospital. Monitor perception. Blanche Partlan says “When I have tension in my life, I call it excitement.” While juggling two jobs seems hard, see your future and you’ll see the excitement. Focus on what you’re attaining, not on what you have to give up to create a part-time legal nurse consultant salary.
We all get the same 24 hours each day. How you spend yours will determine how successful you will be. You’ll face those time-sucking distractions head on: the Internet, email following you everywhere, Facebook®, Twitter and texting. We like to feel good and because we like to feel good, we gravitate towards what’s easy instead of what’s productive. Let’s face it: It feels good to hang out on Facebook. It feels good to play Trivia Crack®. It feels good to watch Empire. And heroin – feels good to drug addicts. You get the idea.
Turn off the TV. That’s the most transforming thing you’ll do for your productivity. Ask yourself, “Is this hour I sit in front of the TV contributing toward my part-time legal nurse consultant salary?” Achieving new goals requires commitment.
Detach from complainers. They rob you of precious minutes, hours, days you’ll never get back and distract you from your goals. Interrupt the interrupter. Are you complaining about your nursing career or actively doing something to fix it?
Guard your time carefully. Pay attention to your thoughts and actions. Time is a precious gift, not to be wasted.
Use the CLNC® Mentoring
None of us get to where we are in life alone. We all need help. This is especially true in a legal nurse consulting business because RNs receive no education in nursing school on the legal nurse profession and on how to consult with attorneys. Using a mentoring network properly will be a significant contribution to your success. Heed the advice of experienced mentors and they will help you avoid business mistakes most beginners make.
Transition Safely into a Full-Time Legal Nurse Consultant Salary
While I don’t want you to quit your day job yet, you do need to know when to cut the cord. The more I consulted with attorneys part time, the more I appreciated that every hour I gave to the hospital I was actually losing money.
So I left my RN job and my friends at the hospital, never once looking back – except to hire my RN colleagues as subcontractors for my legal nurse consulting business.
One CLNC consultant, Susan Schaab from Montana says: “Even though my CLNC business income was consistent, leaving the security of the hospital was still frightening. I compared exactly what I was earning at the hospital to my earnings and I realized I was actually losing money by working at the hospital. I was billing $125/hr to attorneys, so the $60/hr for overtime shifts was not worth the wear and tear on my body. It was time to make the move and I did!”
Create a master plan:
- Decide the number of attorneys and how much income and savings you require for your part-time legal nurse consultant salary.
- Reduce overtime in your RN job so you have energy to devote to your business. Drop back to part-time or agency status in your hospital job.
- Keep your eye on the end-goal. Yes, you’ll work two jobs at first. I did and it wasn’t easy. Now I take 8-10 weeks for vacation every year.
Don Shula said, “The start is what stops most people.” Use these 7 ways to start supplementing your RN income with a part-time legal nurse consultant salary to get started today.
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*Results are atypical and may vary from person to person.