By Scott Manning, FASPR, ASPR President
Physician recruiting is all about the process. Every organization has to determine what process is most efficient and yields the best results for their specific needs. The process that my group uses may be much different than the process your organization uses because a successful recruitment program will continue to evolve to meet its changing needs. This is critical to success, as the healthcare profession is a dynamic environment with constantly “moving targets.”
In general, the physician recruitment department is responsible for developing and implementing the recruitment process. This includes:
- Planning how it can be best utilized;
- Ensuring it meets the needs of the organization;
- Effectively communicating with all involved parties;
- Implementing the plan.
To be successful, you also will need to be able to “think on your feet” and revise as necessary. Sometimes this requires you to “eat a little crow” as the plan you devised has to be remodeled/discarded. Don’t fall in love with the plan because even well-thought-out plans that are implemented effectively don’t always work. We are in a people business and that makes our success rate somewhat unpredictable. Always be flexible enough to scrap what you have tried previously and embrace a new option.
In the end you must show your leadership team that you are capable of tackling new challenges. Many times, it’s more important how you deal with adversity than how you deal with success. The individual who can rebound from a poor outcome by implementing an alternatively successful plan will be valued by their organization.
In my experience I have found the best practice is to:
- Gather relevant information to determine a path;
- Develop a plan based on the best information available without overanalyzing, as this can lead to inaction;
- Implement the plan logically and efficiently;
- Prepare for contingencies — variables are often unpredictable;
- If the desired outcome isn’t achieved, then “roll with the punches” and suggest alternative solutions;
- Even if the original plan is unsuccessful, there always is value as you have eliminated a variable for future strategies.
I wish each of you much success as you analyze, prepare, implement and accomplish your goals. As you encounter “speed bumps” along the way, think about one of my favorite quotes from Robert Burns, the Scottish poet: “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” I don’t interpret this to mean that the final result is any less successful…just that the road there has a couple of twists and turns.