Defining Your Ideal Practice Opportunity

Who doesn’t want to find their perfect practice opportunity? As Gesensway writes in her Today’s Hospitalist article Leaving so soon?, “as many as 70% of physicians across all specialties change jobs within their first two years”.‌ This is costly from both a professional and personal perspective. Although physicians leave for a variety of reasons, the one most easily addressed is that of unfulfilled expectations. In our experience, when physicians take the time to define what they desire in a practice opportunity, understand their personal trade-off scale, and systematically compare offers, they are less likely to make such a costly mistake.

Determine your ideal practice opportunity by examining your objectives, values, and goals:

Objectives: Your objectives should be the right direction in an aspect of your life, including self, family, friends, career, and anything else you consider extremely important in your life.

Values: Values such as personal integrity, fairness, and honesty guide how you will move toward your objectives. Think seriously about your values for a moment and rank them as they apply to your life. It is okay to not check every one as high - people are different and are guided by different values. Remember, no one needs to see this but you.

Personal and Professional Goals: Goals are specific steps you make for yourself to reach your objectives. For example,"My objective is to be a good parent. My goal is to spend as much time with my kids as I do at work." Goals, therefore, are marks for achievement we set for ourselves on the way to meeting our objective. Take a moment to think about your personal and professional goals, being sure that they are consistent with the objectives and values you have set for yourself.