A letter from our Co-Editor-In-Chief, Dr. Archana Shrestha
I wanted to share with you some of my biggest takeaways from last month’s Women in White Coats Doctors’ Lounge talk by contract’s expert Dr. Bonnie Mason. She shared the “Top 5 Contract Mistakes that Doctors Make” and pitfalls to avoid.
This was such a great talk and so incredibly informative even for me, an attending physician of 12 years. I learned that you can negotiate out of a contract or job but that you must do that before you give in your letter of resignation. I also learned that when you are an employed physician and the hospital decides to bring in a contract management group to takeover your contract, you must band together as a unified group and negotiate together as a group for the greatest leverage.
One of the top 5 mistakes that Dr Bonnie shared though is that many people don’t even attempt to negotiate before signing the dotted line. She shared a story where she spoke to a class of graduating residents asking them about their contract negotiations for their new jobs and none of them had even negotiated a single thing. And guess what? All of those residents were women.
When we don’t even negotiate, we leave about 25% of pay on the table. Not to mention that we also lose an opportunity to negotiate things like maternity leave, paid time off, flexible scheduling or other things that could majorly impact you or your family. If you think you can negotiate those things after signing, you are sadly mistaken.
Dr. Mason spoke about how women doctors not negotiating is part of why we have the gender pay gap in medicine. We must know our worth and the going rates in the area and negotiate.
And if someone tells you that the contract is not negotiable, simply ask to have a discussion so that you can better understand the terms and to make sure its a good fit for both sides. And if they refuse to have even a discussion or insist on having it signed in a few days time, it’s probably wise to walk away.
There were so many other things that I learned from this lively discussion and I want you to be able to watch the replay too because I’m sure there is some advice in there that could save you from costly mistakes.
That’s why we are offering one month free in the Doctors Lounge. Just use promo code 1MONTHFREE (by March 19) and you will be able to join in for free! Trust me this is one talk you can’t afford to miss.
One last thing, my friend…if no one has told you yet this week, I want you to hear it from me — What you do is so meaningful and impactful! You are saving lives and changing lives and making a huge difference in this world. Thank you for all you do! You are so appreciated!
To Uplifting One Another!
Archana Shrestha, MD
Women in White Coats Blog