Surgeons need far more than their medical knowledge to excel in the field. Here are five other skills you need if you are wondering how to become a surgeon. Good motor skills Hand-eye coordination, manual dexterity and attention to detail are all absolute musts for anyone doing small but vital jobs like severing blood vessels, cutting out tumors or stitching wounds. You need to be able to keep a very steady hand under pressure! Teamwork A surgeon is only one member of the team that performs a surgery – there will be assistants, nurses, anesthesiologists and other professionals present some or all of the time. This means that surgeons must be great team players and be able to see the value in everyone’s contribution to a successful operation. Communication skills Surgeons have a distinct knowledge of the procedure they are carrying out – but as we said before, they need the help from others to complete the job. A surgeon with great communication skills is able to facilitate a smooth operation by talking to his or her team openly and professionally, whatever their role. Problem solving As with any other medical field, not everything in the operating theatre goes to plan. Surgeons need to be able to problem solve quickly and effectively – not doing so can put lives at serious risk. Patience and stamina Last but by no means least, surgeons need a huge dose of patience and stamina to get them through gruelling operations. A common and extremely long surgery is spinal cord surgery, at a whopping 14 hours long, and many other procedures regularly take more than five or six hours to complete. Surgeons need to be able to stay focused throughout to avoid making fatal errors. Sound exciting? If you think you fit the bill, a career as a surgeon can be immensely interesting and rewarding! Eye-opening hospital work experience International hospital shadowing for school and university students Find out more You might also be interested in ... Choosing between multiple medical careers Five “outside the box” jobs in the medical field What in the world is global health?