We go to the altar together.
Last month, I wrote about onboarding and the important responsibility that everyone associated with a hospitalist program has to ensure that each new provider quickly comes to believe he or she made a terrific choice to join the group.
Upon reflection, it seems important to address the other side of this equation. I’m talking about the responsibilities that each candidate has when deciding whether to apply for a job, to interview, and to accept or reject a group’s offer.
The relationship between a hospitalist and the group he or she is part of is a lot like a marriage. Both parties go to the altar together, and the relationship is most likely to be successful when both enter it with their eyes open, having done their due diligence, and with an intention to align their interests and support each other. Here are some things every hospitalist should be thinking about as they assess potential job opportunities:
1. Be clear about your own needs, goals, and priorities. Before you embark on the job-hunting process, take time to do some careful introspection. My partner John Nelson is fond of saying that one of the key reasons many doctors choose to become hospitalists is that they prefer to “date” their practice rather than “marry” it. Which do you want? Are you willing to accept both the benefits and the costs of your preference? What are your short- and long-term career goals? In what part of the country do you want to live, and are you looking for an urban, suburban, or small-town environment? Is it important to be in a teaching setting? Are there specific pieces of work, such as ICU care or procedures, that you want to either pursue or avoid? What personal considerations, such as the needs of your spouse or kids, might limit your options? What structural aspects of the job are most important to you? Schedule? Daily workload? Compensation? I encourage you to think through these and other similar questions so that you are clear in your own mind about your personal job selection criteria. This will enable you to honestly articulate these things to others and to assess potential job opportunities in light of them.
Read the full text of this blog post at hospitalleader.org.
Leslie Flores is a founding partner at Nelson Flores Hospital Medicine Consultants, a consulting practice that has specialized in helping clients enhance the effectiveness and value of hospital medicine programs.
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