The Top 7 Skills Required for a CNA

The Top 7 Skills Required for a CNA

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Are you wondering if you have the right skills required for a CNA? Do you want to improve your skills as a CNA? Are you confused about the essential skill requirements you need to become the best Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) you can be?

In this article, you will learn more about the role of a CNA and the essential skills required for the job.

How to Become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

Considering the growth of the senior population in the States, the demand for Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) keeps growing. Becoming a CNA is not difficult to do, as long as you are passionate about becoming either a CNA or a healthcare professional. Now let’s discuss how to become a CNA:

  • The candidate must have a high school diploma or GED.
  • Take a CNA training program that is approved by your respective state. Make sure to complete the required in-person clinical skills training.
  • Enroll and take your state-approved CNA certification exam.
  • Pass the CNA exam.
  • Receive the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) certification.

7 Skills Required for a CNA

As a Certified Nursing Assistant, you need to have all the skills required for a CNA. Even if you lack some skills, now is the time to improve on those skills. These skills can help you stand out among your coworkers, as well as help you advance in your career as a CNA.

7 Skills Required for a CNA
7 Skills Required for a CNA

Some of the skills required for a CNA are as follows:

  • Strong attention to detail.
  • Patience.
  • Good communication skills.
  • Flexibility.
  • Good knowledge of medical terminology.
  • Stay hygienic.
  • Consistency.

Let’s now discuss the skills required for a CNA in detail.


The main responsibility of a CNA is to assist nurses to monitor patients under their care. This requires them to regularly keep a track of the patients and record important information regarding each patient’s medical situation. Important patient information, such as the vital signs, pulse, or blood pressure of the respective patient.

CNAs are required to observe patients keenly and record if they see any changes in them. As CNAs are the healthcare professionals who work closely with the patients, it is required of them to have strong attention to detail and alert the medical team if required.

CNAs also work on patient data, such as patient charts and important health information. They must be able to interpret the data accurately as it might put the patient at risk if not addressed at the right time.


As healthcare professionals, CNAs are required to handle patients and respond to them with the utmost patience. Due to certain health conditions, a few patients might be difficult to handle. In such cases, CNAs need to have the patience to be able to handle those patients with good care.


As a CNA, you are required to have excellent written and verbal skills. Communication is very important for any CNA. As a professional who works closely with patients and others on the medical team, you need to be good at communicating the problem or explaining the required details to the respective person.

Being good at communicating things to a patient or a healthcare professional helps you build a good understanding between you and the respective person.


As a professional in the healthcare industry, each new day has a new set of tasks. Some days, you may have fewer tasks to perform, while on other days, your day might be challenging. You may leave your shift on time some days, while on other days, you might have to work long hours.

As a CNA, it is very necessary for you to be flexible with your tasks and shifts. On some days, you may have to work even on weekends. As a healthcare professional, you must be willing to work even on weekend shifts. You may have to be flexible with handling difficult patients as not all patients will be easy to handle.


As CNAs, you will work closely with the patients and observe them on a daily basis. It is required of Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) to have all the necessary knowledge of health conditions, infections, and other general medical terminologies used by healthcare professionals.

Being aware of medical terminologies can help you alert the medical team when required, explaining the scenario there. It can help you follow the safety protocols for each health condition at the required time.

This skill can also make you stand out among your coworkers and ensure the safety of every patient under your care.


As a healthcare professional who works closely with patients, you are required to stay hygienic, while maintaining the good hygiene of the patient and place around you as well. There are high chances of you getting infected or spreading the infection from one patient to the other when you fail to maintain proper hygiene in all required areas.


As a CNA, your daily routine revolves around assisting patients and taking care of them. As a healthcare professional who works closely with patients, you need to be aware of all the required protocols to be followed on a daily basis.

Every task you do may have a fixed protocol to be followed. Make sure to learn more about your daily tasks, plan your day, and give your best at work. As it involves the life of patients, you must be very much aware of all the protocols, tasks, and duties you are required to perform as a CNA. 

Wrapping Up

It is essential to have all the skills required for a CNA, as it helps add value to your career. Also, having all the required skills can help you stand out among the other CNAs and can help you gain a better experience at work. It can also help you advance in your career as you gain more experience. These skills not only help you with your career but also to perform well at work.

If you are passionate about becoming a CNA and taking the CNA exam, you can try our free practice test to help you prepare for the exam.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are three qualities you feel are important for a CNA to have?

The 3 most important qualities a CNA must have are as follows:

  • Patience.
  • Compassion.
  • Strong attention to detail.

How can a CNA stand out?

Some ways that can help a CNA stand out are:

  • Be kind to the patients and coworkers.
  • Be a good listener.
  • Practice patience.
  • Have strong attention to detail and observe your patients closely.
  • Be compassionate.

What do they ask in a CNA interview?

Most of the time, the interviewer starts with some general questions, such as ‘Tell me about yourself’ then moves to specific questions, such as ‘What inspired you to become a CNA?’ and other important questions, such as ‘What is your greatest achievement till date?’.

To learn more about CNA interview questions, check our article on how to prepare for CNA interview questions to help you get a better idea.

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How to Become a Pediatric CNA: A Comprehensive Guide

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An Ultimate Guidebook to CNA Dress Code