If you’ve come this far, great. Well done! You’ve selected your niche. You’ve done all the study, attended clinical courses, even treated a few patients within your current clinical setting. All this was relatively easy and familiar and unthreatening. You’ve even played around with business plans, website designs and logos. Now its time to assemble a business and monetise all this knowledge, effort and time. Its time for the rubber to hit the road. It is at this point that some of you will get cold feet. Because, suddenly, its time to get real. The rest of the world can pass judgement on your project. And you’re scared. And afraid to be embarrassed in public. And you don’t like not being in control. Because you are used to being in control. This is the point where you may fail to launch. You may be tempted to delay. You’re not ready. There is more studying to do. This another course to do before you’ll be ready. Maybe an update or tweak to your business plan. And numerous other reasons as to why you should delay and not get started. Dont. Please don’t not get started. Don’t delay, procrastinate or allow yourself to get distracted. Here’s the point. You must know that you’ll never be completely ready. The traffic lights will never be all green
Q: What Niche should I Sub Specialise In? A : Only you can answer this. But let me give you some common pointers to selecting your Niche. Will I Enjoy The Medicine? The most important thing is that this is something you should enjoy and be suited to. Simply speaking, you’re going to have to master this niche. You’re going to have to study and learn all about it. And you’re going to have to live and breathe for the next 3 to 5 years at a minimum. So make sure you have an aptitude for it, and you are going enjoy practicing in this niche. Will I Enjoy Dealing with my Typical Patient? Next, think about the people you are going to be serving. Are you going to enjoy dealing with and treating the patients that this private medicine niche is going to bring to you? It is said that we all get the practice and patients we deserve, so make sure you will enjoy dealing with the sorts of problems and the sorts of people that your new niche will bring to you. Is It Commercially Viable? Firstly, are they going to be a significant number of paying patients within your local area? Secondly, how much of capital is required to get started? Can you afford it? For example a laser clinic
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Taking the Plunge About 10 years ago I found myself in a career cul de sac. Not quite a dead end, but treading water. In other words bored, unfulfilled and frustrated. I wanted to be earning more money, working less, be less controlled by the authorities, and have more prestige and job satisfaction. But I just didn’t have the courage to do something about it Well, I waited until I was almost forty before I took the plunge and changed all that. Now that I’m on the other side of that divide, I can confidently say: it’s been a trip well worthwhile. I only wish I had done it sooner. Mind you It was not easy. I think I made every mistake I possibly could have all the way, sweated the small stuff when I didn’t need to, and generally made life much harder for myself that I needed to. There was no training, formal or informal, at that time, and I learnt it all the hard way, alone. Now on the other side of that fast flowing river, I run a successful specialised skin medical practice employing eight doctors, several staff and earning multiples of what I used to as a family physician. All the while whilst working less than I ever did as a general practitioner, and now
As an entrepreneurial doctor starting out, you face a few challenging choices. Firstly what is my ideal medical niche? Secondly how do I position myself in terms of products/ services,pricing and image . And finally where shall I practice, and is my current location acceptable for my new plans? Consider building your business to be rather like planting a fruit tree. It takes years from planting a tree, watering it, tending to it, nurturing it and protecting it until it starts producing edible fruit. When it does do so, it’ll continue to produce harvest after harvest of fruit for year after year. At this stage, your colleagues , friends and neighbours will be envious of you. But it will all be unnecessarily hard work if you dislike that particular type of farming. Nor will it be of much help if that type of fruit is not in demand locally . Or if you are selling high quality fruit in low quality packaging, or vice versa. And it won’t do you any good if you have to uproot and transplant that tree halfway through because the soil you chose is barren or the climate is unsuitable for that particular crop. Plan well, so you get it right first time. Fortunately, in medicine, you don’t have to get it absolutely correct straight