Is Chasing the Highest Salary Always the Right Decision for Medical Leaders?

Dawn Pascale

Is Chasing the Highest Salary Always the Right Decision for Medical Leaders?

Knowing what you’ll look for in a new job is essential to finding the right fit. For medical leaders, finding the right fit is about more than salary. Sometimes it’s about the money. Many times, it’s not. Is chasing the highest salary always in your best interest? Not necessarily. It all depends on the priorities for your next career move.

This article will explore four of the critical things physician leaders look for in their next job beyond compensation. What’s right for you and your family? That’s something only you can answer.

What Do Doctors Look for in a Job?

Money matters in most job settings. Whether you’re on a partnership track in private practice or a hospital leader, compensation is a complex issue that always affects the employment negotiation process. Increasingly, physician salaries are production-driven, often by RVUs or other metrics such as physician satisfaction, affecting their earning potential. Another issue is if the physician or healthcare leader’s pay is affected by steadily declining reimbursements. These two areas alone affect the salaries of healthcare leaders today.

These complexities mean that each employment opportunity must be weighed against other factors affecting the quality of life that comes with a new job.

Increasingly, doctors and medical leaders look for other attributes and benefits when looking at a new position. Work/life balance is an increasing goal for healthcare workers burning out in record numbers. Today, we see healthcare leaders looking closely at these job requirements as they consider a new position:

  • Positive work environments with colleagues they can trust and respect are an important part of keeping these knowledge workers engaged. Communication, trust, and support are all critical to providing a positive work environment.
  • Flexibility remains an essential factor in job requirements. Doctors have high-stress jobs, so having time off in the form of PTO is an important work benefit for clinicians, administrators, and staff.
  • Support and assistance, whether it’s the right staffing or emotional and mental support, mentorships, and so on, to stave off burnout.
  • Independent decision-making is a critical component of medicine. This autonomy is important to leadership also. Questions surrounding the ability of providers to run their practice as they see fit are common during the interview process.

The American Medical Association (AMA) says, “Practicing medicine in a positive, supportive environment is the foundation for a truly joyful career—but a job that is the wrong fit can lead to burnout and the need for disruptive job changes.” This means chasing the highest salary into a role that only leads a physician leader into an uncomfortable, high-stress environment may only mean that that healthcare executive is destined not to stay.

What Are Your Job Requirements?

MedSource Consultants works closely with some of the leading healthcare organizations in the country to help them find clinical and administrative leadership. We have a strong track record of helping healthcare leaders throughout Boston, MA and beyond find the right fit. Our role is to carefully bridge the gap between a healthcare leader and an organization they are considering. Contact us today to talk about what matters to you in your job search.