Career and Life Planning Guidebook for Medical Residents

18 ADVENTURES IN MEDICINE: THE RESIDENT’S GUIDE 1. Started job search — If you have, what benefits are you seeing? If you haven’t, when do you plan to begin? How will you make this a priority? How do you feel about the process? Confident, scared, anxious? 2. So much to do and not enough time — How much time will you devote to the job search process? Finding the right position takes time. Plan on spending three to four hours a week for a period of three to six months, especially during the initial stages of identifying the type of position you want to pursue. 3. Job search is overwhelming — At the end of this stage, you’ll fill out a job search timeline that captures all the activities and critical decisions that you must make. When you look at the big picture, it can be overwhelming, but when you break it down by phases and steps, it’s easier to work through the process. 4. I’m excited about the possibilities — How’s your attitude? A positive attitude is a must when it comes to a job search. If you view it as a chore or a hassle, this attitude will be translated into how you present yourself on paper and in person. 5. Spouse or partner is involved — If you have a spouse or partner, it’s critical that they are part of your team and involved in the decision-making process. Your decisions impact their lives as much as yours. 6. Keep your values close — Verify your assumptions by conducting research online and/or by networking, learning about the salaries as well as the supply and demand for a particular area. Even if you determine that there may be several offers to consider, there may be 1 or 2 that align with your values. 7. Solid network — The job search process is lengthy and filled with unexpected twists and turns. Find a mentor and/or a team of people you trust who can offer advice and tips for success. Check with your program director and/or attendings to get the help that you need. Don’t work alone or in a vacuum, because this decision is one of the most important that you will face in the months and years to come. 8. Make your career a Priority — re-entering yourself back into life after dedicating your life to medicine over a decade is no easy feat and it takes time.