Many physicians find their final year of training stimulating, challenging…and overwhelming! Developing an action plan with a well-thought-out list of your priorities can help you manage your transition from training to practice.
Step 1: List your priorities
At PracticeLink, we recommend that you begin your job search by thinking about what is important to you in this stage of your life. Some questions to ask yourself are:
- What is most important to you?
- What is important to your family?
- What type of practice do you want?
- Where do you want to live and work?
Step 2: Consult with practicing physicians
Most physicians agree that the most important things to think about during the transition from training to practice are geographic location and the key features and scope of a practice.
To help you through this phase, your action plan should include talking with colleagues who have been practicing for five or more years to learn about the realities of various practice settings.
Step 3: Hit the road
Another way to explore geographic locations and types of practices is to attend the state or national meetings of your specialty’s association or society. Many of these organizations can help link newly trained physicians to practicing physicians from all over the country.
PracticeLink Live! Physician Career Fairs (info.PracticeLink.com/CareerFair2018) are also good networking opportunities. There, physicians talk with recruiters from the local area, as well as from different states and cities, to determine if a location and organization is a good fit for them and their families.
Step 4: Use PracticeLink.com
PracticeLink helps physicians in all specialties find jobs nationwide. You can also create a free PracticeLink profile to allow recruiters who work in health care facilities across the country know when you are actively looking for a job. (You also have full control over your profile to protect your privacy.)
Step 5: Remember this advice
It can be overwhelming for residents in their final year of training to think of suddenly becoming a practicing physician. To help you manage through this discomfort, remember a few key last pieces of advice.
Narrow where and how you want to practice. Though it may seem frightening to choose a specific location and practice, remember that your first job is not likely to be your last job.
Make a list of priorities, and make your career decisions based on those priorities.
Seek to understand different practice settings. For example, try to gauge how decisions are made in the practices in which you’re interviewing, and who is involved in those decisions.
Remember that compensation isn’t everything. Money may not be the major decision maker if quality of life is higher on your list of priorities.
Your first practice may not have everything that is on your priority list, but creating that list is still worth doing. Use your list, ask colleagues, network and attend conferences to do the research and find your dream practice.