Recently, news broke that one of the largest physician staffing companies is in serious financial straits. This company employs around 70,000 health care professionals and staffs over five hundred facilities in forty-five states. If this company goes under, tens of thousands of physicians may find themselves out of a job.
So what should you do if you find out that the company you work for is in serious financial trouble, and that your job may be in jeopardy? Here are a few helpful tips:
- Don’t panic. Stay calm and resist the urge to jump ship immediately. The last thing you want to do is to make a decision when you are in a state of panic. This could lead you to leave a bad situation for one that may be worse.
- Prepare. When in an uncertain situation, it is okay to hope for the best, but you must prepare for the worst (and the worst-case scenario is that you lose your job). Therefore, you should consider planning for this possibility and start looking for your next job now.
- Don’t take it personally. When working for a financially unstable organization, the work environment can become quite toxic. As the saying goes, “crap flows downstream.” If the Board of Directors is unhappy, then the C-suite is facing pressure, and they, in turn, put pressure on middle management, who in turn come down on physicians. This may take the form of increased work demands, decreased hours, or just downright rudeness directed towards the physicians. Many companies, faced with the challenge of shrinking the size of the workforce, revert to tactics designed to get people to quit, so they won’t have to face the trouble (and possible bad publicity) of doing mass firings/layoffs.
- Make a plan. Every physician should have a work backup plan. It doesn’t matter if you do locums, private practice, or are employed. There is no such thing as a permanent job. As the last few years have shown us, the medical industry marketplace is extremely volatile with corporate medical groups coming and going, being bought, and sold. Sadly, many physicians lose their jobs in the process. Therefore, every physician should consider choosing locums as a part of their backup plan. Doing locums gives you the ability to find temporary work quickly and continue generating income between jobs.
Additionally, when planning for a potential job loss, your plans should include contacting your financial advisor. Multiple financial planning considerations must be taken into account in the event of a job loss. Things to consider include continuing your health insurance coverage, determining what to do with your retirement plans, possibly modifying your debt repayment plans, and developing a budget. Your financial advisor can help with these issues.
The financial planning experts at Commonwealth of Atlanta specialize in working with physicians. To find out more, contact them at https://www.cwbfs.com/.