Thursday, January 7, 2010

Becoming an Entrepreneur When You Can’t Find a Job

AARP has some great articles on jobs and careers. I doubt that any of these articles are focused on the physician community, but the concepts and principles behind them are sound advice.

For instance, there's an article on AARP titled, "Hire Yourself: Becoming an Entrepreneur When You Can’t Find a Job"

There are many physicians who are over 50 and they are seeking to transition to a non-clinical career. I've spoken to many of these individuals in 2009 and I anticipate speaking to more of them in 2010. The difference between physicians and business executives is that physicians tend to under-estimate the power of social networking. They also focus too much on formal training and education as opposed to work experience and skills that may be self-taught. I'm obviously generalizing here, but much of this is due to the way that physicians are educated and trained. During medical school and residency, we don't rely on robust networking skills to succeed and advance in our careers. Instead, it's generally about self-related accomplishments such as grades, test scores, publications, research, etc.

So, if you're looking for a job and you can't seem to find one, are you ready to become an entrepreneur? Do you know what it will take to create a company and generate enough revenue for you to maintain your quality of life? I think it's a great idea to start a business, but you have to know where to begin. Some of the easiest places to start include the following:
  • Writing. You can begin a freelance medical writing career and establish a business very quickly if you have strong writing skills and if you know how to begin.
  • Internet. There are many web-based businesses that include different elements of health care resources, services, and products. It's very easy to create a website and to leverage that for your business.
  • Consulting. Physicians tend to be good at consulting. After all, they have spent their careers solving problems.
  • Medical Chart Review. Many physicians are establishing their own business as medical reviewers. They may review medical charts for a variety of clients.
  • Teaching and Tutoring. There are many college and medical students who could benefit from some teaching and tutoring. Whether it's MCAT prep, USMLE step 1, or some other standardized exam, students are seeking help.
So, are you ready to be an entrepreneur? It may start by being an independent contractor and then forming your own business as your volume of business increases.

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