The impact of the pandemic on every sector has been massive, especially for healthcare professionals. The workforce has dealt with major impacts spanning staff assignments being shifted to areas of greater need to work from home mandates. In other instances individuals are reconciling job furloughs, layoffs, and even closures, with vulnerability replacing job security.
However, history has taught us many lessons, one being how opportunity and promise often stem from the darkest hours. In times of crisis our heads can engage in serious mental calisthenics, pondering fresh career directions and opportunities. In these challenging times, resource gaps for patients, practitioners, and other industry stakeholders become most evident. Telehealth and other virtual platforms are currently being leveraged to the Nth degree. Just think of the community of services now available across social media, from virtual concerts, happy hours, and group movies showings to virtual hair styling, exercise, plus other professional and self-care experiences. Some of the most innovative ideas appear when life has handed us a disaster, whether man-made or natural in scope.
Anyone can daydream about ways to improve the patient, provider, and practitioner experience, but how do you mobilize those ideas to implement your vision? Your energies may may propel you to engage in a new volunteer experience, new job or, even a full-fledged career shift. They can also advance you past burnout, and the current dimension of vicarious and shared trauma resulting from the pandemic. Here are 5 ways to leverage career opportunities in the Post-COVID19 climate:
- All great ideas start somewhere! Crisis drives health and behavioral professionals to go from gaps in services or program challenges, to development opportunities. What one thing would make a difference for you? Chances are, that issue you identify is a priority to someone else.
- Think sustainable:What will work for the short and long-term? Most of us are great at building bridges, but can you maintain the bridge to keep it standing for the long haul? Even better, can you replicate your idea to build other bridges as well?
- Organize your efforts: Be intentional and develop your plan. Engaging a great idea is incredibly motivating! This action could be as simple as putting your idea on a post-it note, or recording a reminder on your digital device (e.g., phone, tablet, laptop).
- Let your ideas be an extension of you!We all have unique energy and flair; let that creativity flow! Don’t let your great ideas stay locked within the confines of your brain. Promote them in more public spaces (e.g., Facebook Live posts, blogs, articles, presentations). Otherwise your great vision will remain the best kept secret!
- Develop your clear mission and vision: Years ago I recognized one large healthcare industry service gap. Professional education benefits were being cut by many employers. My vision was to create a company where every contract and effort I engaged in allowed me to educate and empower the workforce (students, educators, new and more seasoned practitioners), thus filling that gap; all efforts geared to enhance overall quality of care that heeds the Quadruple Aim. This vision guides and inspires my every intent. What will your vision be?
Ellen Fink-Samnick is an award-winning industry thought leader who empowers healthcare’s interprofessional workforce. Her latest books are, The Essential Guide to Interprofessional Ethics for Healthcare Case Management and The Social Determinants of Health: Case Management’s Next Frontier, This article originally appeared in the blog, Ellen’s Ethical Lens”