What else can a GP do?

Careers advisers often describe a four stage process i.e. first know yourself, then explore the opportunities available which match what you know about yourself, decide which specific opportunities to explore and take appropriate action. Fortunately, as a GP you should have been used to self appraisal, the first step if you’re making a career change. You can start with some basic questions e.g.

  • What are my interests?
  • What are my values?
  • What are my skills?
  • What are my needs, responsibilities and constraints?
  • What do I want from work?
  • What is my preferred working style?

If we take your skills as an example – what skills have you developed through study, what have you developed through medical practice and what have you developed in your life outside work?

For instance, can you give examples which demonstrate your analytical and diagnostic skills, your interpersonal and team working skills, your IT skills, your communication skills and your ability to work under pressure and to achieve deadlines? How would you assess these skills? For example one model suggests there are four types of skill:

  • Motivated skills – skills that you enjoy and are good at.
  • Developmental skills – skills you enjoy but need improving.
  • Burn out skills - skills you are good at but do not enjoy.
  • Irrelevant skills – skills you do not enjoy and are not good at.

If you’re interested in a structured way to work through a career preparation self appraisal, try one of the following:

www.open.ac.uk/careers
www.windmillsonline.co.uk/interactive/intro1.html

After accident or illness has prevented them from continuing a clinical career, doctors have gone on to pursue a diverse range of alternative careers, including: College Lecturer, Complementary Health practitioner, Journalist, Legal Executive, Librarian, Medical School lecturer – and even Zookeeper!