4 Questions – Grow Your Executive Career in Healthcare

“Don’t confuse Career Advancement with Career Development or Career Counseling. Career Development is about work skills. Career Counseling is about work placement skills. Career Advancement is about political skills and working the system.”

~ L. Flores

Carter works as a healthcare executive in a large regional hospital. “The new healthcare law changes the whole game,” he says. “The hospital is scrambling to find new ways to cut costs. Long time positions are under the ax and people need to expect to do more.”

Career development is important to Carter.  He not only wants to keep his job, he wants to grow with the new changes.  Carter entered healthcare because he loves serving and making a difference to people.  Now his goal is to find a way to make the new laws work in his hospital. At the same time, he wants to continue to grow his career.

“I asked myself a series of questions so I could position myself for success,” Carter said. “I wanted to continue to add value to the hospital and to advance myself.”

1. What’s Changing?

To stay on top of things, Carter needed to know what would be changing.  This meant reading up on the trends, the commentaries, even going into the thousands and thousands of pages of the new law.

He checked with other hospitals to see how they were dealing with the impact.

2. What’s Essential?

Carter looked at all the hospital staff to evaluate what could be cut and what was most essential.  Who was adding value?

Next he examined how he could add value. What could he do in his current position to best assist the hospital transition? Which positions above him would likely be retained?

“It would be stupid to try to work into a job that might not be there in a year or two,” Carter said. “So I needed to be strategic in looking at my career development.

3. What New Qualifications Do I Need?

“As I looked at that next position, I evaluated what additional skills, education, and leadership I would need to step into that healthcare executive spot,” Carter said.  He listed them and worked to put himself in the place to get them.

“Ideally, I didn’t just want to match the skills of that executive,” Carter said.  “I wanted to be better.  I wanted to be more qualified.”

4. How Can I Make Myself Indispensable?

“I decided to develop my career by making myself as valuable as I could.  Both in my current job and my desired advancement, I wanted to be known as the guy who would always come through.” Carter said.

He looked at what was important to his boss.  And he tried to make sure that everything he did added to the bottom line of the hospital. Cost-cutting ideas.  Streamlining processes. Technological advancements.

“I felt if I added value to my boss and his goals, and if I made a difference to the hospital’s focus of both patient care and cost cutting, that would be the best use of my time and efforts,” Carter said. “I also worked to make sure my work was visible to key people.”

For Carter, his questions and answers paid off. He saw his career develop as he moved into the healthcare executive position he’d wanted.  And he continued to gain fulfillment in the industry he loved.

If your healthcare job may be at risk, contact Joel and learn the skills and resources to keep your job and advance your career.

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