April 13, 2006

Curious, George...new career? I'm seriously considering leaving clinical medicine, but I want to find a career that still takes advantage of my strengths. These include communication, education, relationship building, and (given my surgical background) anything requiring a good deal of manual dexterity.

I'd appreciate any serious suggestions; I've already begun looking into consulting, pharmaceutical and surgical sales, medical education, and the like. Of course, I don't want to do anything that won't cover my bills or feed my kids, and I don't have a fat "nest egg" ferreted away. So I'm looking for jobs with earnings potential. More specifically, are there any monkeys who might have network connections who could help me in my search, or consider giving me a look based on my excellent posting history alone? My geographic requirements are continental USA. Thanks in advance.

  • After all, I DID post the "sheepfucker" and "pr0n shelf" links.
  • So you not interested in surgery anymore?
  • Before we offer advice, tenenho, could you tell us what exasctly is the bummer of your current profession? That might help eliminate some of the possible suggestions.
  • That is, tennenho.
  • "... anything requiring a good deal of manual dexterity." Oh, so many jokes, so little time!
  • If you're willing to take the time to learn a new trade, hand engraving and horology (watchmaking and repair) are great jobs that require manual dexterity and an eye for detail, and they are WIDE OPEN markets. Engraving's a dying artform, and I think the average age for horologists in the US is somewhere around 60. However, there will be some dues paying as you learn your trade.
  • [strengths] include communication, education, relationship building Health insurance plans hire medical directors - these listings on Monster might give you an idea of what they usually want.
  • I've just found that the aspects I love about the work are the human contact and the relationships, not necessarily the lifesaving and the 3-in-the-morning calls. But the money is nice, and I don't want to think that all that schooling went to waste entirely. Plus I still owe a shitload on my education. Thanks, dilettante. That's probably not a bad idea.
  • kittenhead: I guess, with a webcam, I could make a few bucks doing that...
  • If you "don't want to do anything that doesn't cover the bills" then you need to say how much the minimum salary is. That alone may (or may not?) eliminate a whole slew of options.
  • Medical device companies pay medical professionals to train clients in using new technologies and to act as technical support. It's teaching, not selling. It pays moderately well with upward mobility possible.
  • Yeah - if you got your medical education in the USA then I can well believe that you need to earn a fairly substantial sum just to cover the loans. (The exchange rate is 4 years full fee university medical education in Australia = ~ 1 year in the US, and I'm not joking). Anyway - how about supervising drug trials? Or getting involved in drug development in some other capacity. The NIH could also be an option - a quick check shows that they are on the look out for health scientist administrators, and that pay scale goes up to ~US$120k. Which is just OK in Bethesda but it's a thought.
  • I was gonna suggest getting into cosmetic surgery. You don't have to go the full-on route, you can make a nice living just shooting botox and collagen into old bitches like my wife.
  • Or he could become a male prostitute, and shoot something else into your wife.
  • Good luck.
  • Cardshark.
  • biochem research/analysis? what about that archeo- paleo- old bone type stuff? vet medicine? teaching? that whole mental health gig?
  • I hear the CIA is hiring
  • I think arch work in the continental U.S. would hit a major snare with NAGPRA, GramMa. The work itself would be rewarding in helping people with repatriation and land claims issues, however, I don't see it as being as lucrative a career unless you are more interested in using that manual dexterity at a keyboard writing books a la James Chatters et al. Burials in living traditions are a difficult and fragile subject to approach. Best not to tread heavily and haphazardly, if at all.
  • Not sure how transferrable the medical skills are but communication and relationship building skills are probably important to a veteranarian. although, I wouldn't mention the sheepfucker post in an interview.
  • Excellent point, SassyMonkey
  • Could you go into forensics? We need smart people who can figure things out.
  • Cardshark. Or Cardsharp.
  • Sorry, techsmith: have I missed a generational glitch? One can go into forensics and still be a cardsharp? Not intentded pour moi?
  • "Could you go into forensics? We need smart people who can figure things out." /wipes tears from eyes
  • If not a new career, perhaps a new hobby?.
  • ...a new hobby? No money in that. I checked.
  • Thank you all for your suggestions. It's somewhat disheartening to have spent over a decade working toward something, only to find it isn't quite what you expected.
  • If you don't have a calling then stick with what you're doing. Work sucks; that's why it's called work and why you get paid. Unless you have an overwhelming passion to do something for which you can also get paid (and you'd know it if you did) then you might as well do what you're already doing, or a different aspect of what you're already doing. You've made a huge commitment in time, money, and effort. It'd be more than somewhat disheartening to give that up to find out the grass over there is just as brown. Having said that, there are other directions that you can take within your current field that might appeal to you more. A psychiatrist friend now teaches and writes exclusively; another MD friend runs a non-profit org involving 3rd world medicine; an EMD is now involved in city health planning. You don't necessarily need a revolution; let your career evolve.
  • Thanks, all. I've got some ideas, although admittedly most of the ones I hadn't thought of already involve more testicles than I'd like.
  • Work sucks; that's why it's called work and why you get paid. The instant you accept this, you're in a jail of your own making. Millions toil on in jobs they hate. Why would anyone want to waste their life this way? It ain't worth it. General career comment for people unhappy in their jobs: Think of what your ideal job would be, maybe what you have isn't quite there yet, but at least figure out what would make you more happy and then head towards that direction. Here are two books that I've found helpful: Live the Life you Love Are You Ready to Succeed? (This was written by a Columbia MBA prof. You would think from the title it's all about "getting ahead" but it's not).
  • timefactor, how is it that I can completely agree and disagree (a la StoreyBored) with that comment? Time warp pre-haps?
  • Dear lord I checked that twice. No more before noon piss-ups! Sorry, StoryBored. In other news, I'm done the semester!
  • How about teaching? You could work in medical/nursing education at a university. Tons of jobs, a flexible schedule, and you get to hand out with young people all day without being seen as some kind of weirdo. The pay is less than what you are used to, but I'll bet there are things you could do on the side. Forbes just ranked college professor as the #2 job in America.
  • Work sucks; that's why it's called work and why you get paid.
    The instant you accept this, you're in a jail of your own making.
    i find both these positions extreme. there are aspects of every job that suck and are boring, yet it should be possible to find some pleasure in any job. if you can't find anything good at all about a given task (sweeping the yard for example), the problem is not with the task. to me, the trick is to find something that has sufficient motivational aspects to compensate for the drudgery. again, there is drudgery inherent in every job. making a change might be as simple as adding a new aspect or a new repsonsibility to your current job, something that could start out at 10% of your time and grow to fill a greater proportion. if your financial responsibilities are substantial (and it sounds like they're not negligible), this might be a sensible way to go about it.
  • ...it should be possible to find some pleasure in any job. if you can't find anything good at all about a given task (sweeping the yard for example), the problem is not with the task. Skrilla, roryk, cold, hard, chedda, yo. There's a big difference between doing chores and doing paid work. That's the meritocracy in action.
  • In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun! You find... Oh, nevermind. *Jumps back into chalk drawing*
  • *wonders if tennenho found a new path* *wonders if he got the mac yet*