How will I know it’s right?

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What do you need to think about when deciding your next move? Making the Rounds, a new podcast series from the AMA, offers career advice and interviews on topics that impact residents' lives and careers, but the discussions can benefit physicians at any stage of their career.

In the first episode, AMA senior attorney Wes Cleveland has tips on things to consider before beginning the contracting process. Compensation is important of course, but so is your work environment. What questions should you ask to uncover the information you need?

Does the organization have a business plan?  With the rapid pace of change in the healthcare landscape, you want to be confident if your employer has a strategic plan. You can ask about short-term and long-term goals, and consider how these align with your professional goals.

What’s the leadership structure like? Is it collaborative, or more top down and hierarchical?  Will you be comfortable working in the type of administrative structure that exists?  Is leadership stable?  If there is a revolving door with a long period of turnover you might want to look closer. Are many physicians going to retire soon? Is there high turnover? If so, try to find out the conditions in which physicians are leaving? Is it the culture or are different factors at play?

Can you interview current employees?  A future colleague can be your best source of information. What’s their satisfaction level? What do they say about the culture? Be sure to conduct some basic research on the employer. This may be obvious, but do a simple google search…what kind of press have they gotten? How are they thought of in the community? 

For more tips and advice listen to the series Making the Rounds.

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