So, you are a physician in a large metropolitan hospital-owned practice, with a big salary, professional prestige, invites to all of the local galas, and everything else that goes along with being a part of a large healthcare organization. But the important question to ask yourself is…Are you happy? If your answer is a resounding yes, then congratulations for achieving the success that you worked so hard for all these years. If not, there is no better time to change things up than now. The job market for physicians is roaring across all practice settings, and if you are tired of working in a large system, maybe it is time to think about a small practice. Let’s take a look at the benefits of practicing in a small community setting versus the large organization you are used to.
Fewer layers often mean better communication.
The first thing you will notice about applying to practice in a smaller community setting is that there aren’t as many layers of management to navigate. In fact, in many cases, you will be meeting and negotiating directly with the CEO. In a smaller setting, contracts are typically negotiated and approved faster, changes to workflows or procedures can be made more quickly, often times right on the spot. Overall, decision making happens faster when it occurs directly between the key stakeholders rather than through meetings, memos, and managers.
Having a voice in the organization.
To build upon the direct communication theme – in a smaller community practice setting, you will be looked upon as one of the key stakeholders/decision makers. Having a voice in how the organization is managed can be incredibly energizing when you have spent your career as one among hundreds. Being able to present and implement your ideas will increase your sense of ownership in the workplace, and allow you to contribute in ways other than through medicine.
Cultivating a great workplace culture.
Being looked upon as a key member of a small practice means that you have an opportunity to be a part of making it a great place to work. Everyone wants to feel good about going to work every day, and as soon as it feels like you are punching a clock, it is no longer as rewarding. Fortunately, in your position as a leader, you can have a direct impact on the workplace culture. Creating a culture with open communication, mutual respect from top to bottom, and ensuring that everyone is accountable for their individual responsibilities is a sure way for staff and physicians alike to be excited to come to work every day.
Being a key member of the community.
In a smaller practice setting, you could be one of only a few doctors in an entire town. That immediately makes you one of the biggest fish in a small pond and provides you with an entirely new level of status. Being respected and known by just about everyone in the community can be a great boost for your self-esteem. A smaller community setting also allows you to get to know all of your patients. In other practice settings that may be the case to some degree, but in a small community setting, you can be on a first name basis with all of your patients.
There are plenty of reasons to consider making the switch to a small community setting over a large healthcare organization, including developing a better work/life balance. Only you can know what is best for your career and lifestyle. If you want to explore various opportunities in small practice settings across the country, contact a Jackson Physician Search recruitment professional and get started today!
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