Nursing Entrepreneur: Salary & Definition

Apr 23, 2019

This article provides an overview of the career options, salary information, and education requirements for a nursing entrepreneur. From starting your own business to contracting, there are many options for nurses looking to work independently.

What is a Nursing Entrepreneur?

A nursing entrepreneur is an RN who utilizes their nursing experience and enterprising ambition to create their own business in the healthcare industry. Businesses can include a nurse staffing agency; sales or development of medical equipment, medical supplies, and/or medical apparel; or working as a nursing consultant, nurse educator, or independent nurse contractor. Day-to-day responsibilities and salary will vary depending on the venture but will resemble the work of many business owners--marketing, social media, accounting, and outreach to customer base.

Educational Requirements Diploma or degree in nursing, RN license, MBA (optional but helpful)
Job Skills Entrepreneurial spirit, business-savvy, marketing, communication skills, accounting
Mean Salary (2018)* $75,510 (for regular RN's); salary will vary for a nursing entrepreneur
Job Outlook (2016-2026)* 15% (for regular RN's)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Required Education

A nursing entrepreneur must first earn a diploma or degree in the field and pass the NCLEX-RN exam to obtain their RN license. An advanced degree is not required but nurses pursuing an entrepreneur career may find it helpful to acquire a Master of Business Administration (MBA). Many schools even offer a dual master's degree program where students can complete a Master's of Science in Nursing and Master of Business Administration at the same time.

Required Skills

Like any other business owner, a nursing entrepreneur must have an entrepreneurial spirit to work independently and be willing to take a financial risk. Having an education or experience in business, marketing and accounting will be extremely helpful in this career transition. Communication skills are important, as well. Every business owner needs to have the ability to develop a customer base and feel comfortable promoting their services.

A nursing entrepreneur will also want to have a number of years gaining regular nursing experience. This time can be used for getting to know the industry and what new business opportunities are needed.

Career Outlook and Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the mean salary for a registered nurse (RN) in 2018 is $75,510. Nursing entrepreneurs have the opportunity to make more money, but will vary depending on the type of business venture and workload. According to the National Nurses in Business Association (NNBA) in 2019, nurse consultants working full time can make approximately $125,000 a year. Legal nurse consultants, forensic nurses, and case management nurses are in the same net income range. Their hourly rates can range from $75 to $250 per hour. Nurse educators and wellness coaches can make approximately $600 to $5000 per day for speaking at seminars, says the NNBA. In addition to business owners, nursing entrepreneurs can be independent nurse contractors, which allows them to set the stipulations of their contracted services and negotiate their salary. Nursing agency owners and nurses working in healthcare product sales could have an unlimited potential in earnings.

The BLS reports that employment for RN's is expected to increase by 15% between 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average. RN's can use this demand to their advantage when pursuing entrepreneurship.

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