Dear fellow physicians: If you are searching for a job, you are aware of the importance and power of words. Words can be powerful or devastating, the choice of words is often very revealing.
During your job search you may encounter certain words and expressions that should raise a flag and should trigger an immediate termination of a conversation about a position. These trigger words should also make you move on if you read them in a magazine or online ad.
What words are we talking about?
When you hear these words - run!
1. "opportunity", used to label positions or physician jobs. Typically used by salespeople that are neither potential employers nor colleagues. If you hear or read "opportunity" you are dealing with a middleman, and by nature of their training (if any) and experience they have not "walked in your shoes", they are not your colleagues, they do not feel for you. And this is an "opportunity" for THEM - an "opportunity" to make money off of - you. Physician recruiters are only hired when a job is hard to fill. The more drawbacks a job has, the more likely a salesperson will be needed to fill it! Have you ever seen recruiters advertising "Office in San Francisco/LA/Manhattan/Boston with harbor view and above average pay"? Why not? Those jobs are gone even before anybody ever places any ad in a magazine...Have you seen salespeople recruit for Harvard faculty position? When you hear "opportunity", a salesperson had to be hired at significant cost to sell you a left-over job! You know that recruiters receive 30,000 plus for a signed job contract. That is the "opportunity". Remember, employers have positions, salespeople hawk "opportunities". If you hear that word - Run!
2. "easy access to..." common sales euphemism that is slipped in to cover up a remote, unattractive location - usually 1-3 hours from where you want to be. An undesirable location is a common reason to have to hire help. Salespeople fudge over the fact that a location is unattractive by using vague, and positive sounding terms such as "easy access". This trigger word is usually accompanied by colorful description of supposedly available "culture" and "communities bursting with activity". Visiting just a few of these "easy access" communities will clarify the term and allow you to understand that "easy access" is a variation of "fly-over country". And remember, it is not the recruiter's fault that he or she has to sell this job, because those are the only jobs they get!
3. "low crime rate, affordable housing" "plenty of outdoor (sic!) recreational activities" are equally euphemisms for remote, unexciting locations. Ever heard of "affordable housing" on the shore in San Diego, Miami or Boston? I prefer to be in a more expensive housing area, and usually those areas just happen to come with low crime rates. In areas advertised by salespeople, sadly, the crime rate is usually low because there is nothing left to steal. And when everybody knows everybody else, the crime rate is naturally low...
Another often used term that should stop you in your tracks is "family oriented community". In those communities family is really the sole and exclusive focus of activity, since there is...really, really nothing else to do. You have 5 stores, 4 restaurants including all diners, 3 movie theaters and 2 hours of car travel along the 1 road that leads out of town to the city where you originally wanted to work. Should the ad mention "hunting and fishing", then the moose population is generally larger than the human population.
4. "This area is oversaturated" or "There are no jobs in this area". Immediately end contact to any person that utters these words! Seriously. "Oversaturated" means "nobody is willing to fork over $ 30,000 to have a job filled". A classic sign of an attractive area, where jobs are not advertised, but handed over without magazine ads, online ads and especially without involvement of recruiters. The more attractive a job is, the less likely it will come through a recruiter - the first law of job search. Of course there are jobs in those areas - actually there are a ton of people working in Boston, New York, Washington, San Francisco etc. And they change jobs as often as anywhere else!
You can easily find a position in any "oversaturated" - meaning attractive area by direct mail. You write your cover letter, CV, mailmerge the addresses of all physicians in your target area with the cover letter. For every 100 letters you send out you will receive 2 interested answers. Contact information of physcicians is readily available at infoUSA.com and similar websites that sell physician contact info. You can download the excel or CSV list within seconds after paying with your credit card.
THAT is the real way to find a job! Or you can click over to "The Doctor Job.com" and have them do all that for you - for a fee of course. Might be worth it.
And do not forget to check the website of practicematch.com, where you will find job ads by actual employers - real people that are willing to employ you and that post their actual correct and complete address and telephone number as well as an email address!