Your Perfect Match: A Job In Healthcare

 “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

Job recruiters and coaches often repeat this quote from Confucius as a goal for job seekers. Of course, loving your job can make going to work much easier. But how do you know you’ll love a job when you start or are looking for a change? How do you find that perfect combination of industry, setting, workload, and work/life balance that makes you feel like you’ve won the work lottery? More specifically, how do you know that the medical field is your perfect match? We are here to help. So, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, let us help you find your perfect job in the medical field based on your personal work profile. 

You may be asking, “What’s my personal work profile?” It’s like your dating profile but for finding a job instead of a significant other. It will help you know which positions would be closest to your perfect match. Let’s build yours together. First up, we’ll define your personal values. 

Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash

Your Values

According to a 2014 study, there are five fundamental categories of human values for every healthcare interaction. They are: 

  • Compassion
  • Respect for People
  • Commitment to Integrity and Ethical Practice
  • Commitment to Excellence
  • Justice in Healthcare

These values “embody the human dimensions of healthcare and are fundamental to the practice of compassionate, ethical and safe relationship-centered care.”

We would also add a couple of other essential values for happy healthcare professionals. They are: 

  • Passion to serve — the medical field requires you to have a unique commitment to putting the care of others at the forefront. 
  • Commitment to learning — Medical innovations mean that those in the field must be lifelong learners, always learning new information and skills.
  • Social responsibility  — A medical professional must be committed to positively impacting the lives of individuals, families, communities, and societies.

Because healthcare is human-focused, healthcare professionals should have solid values. Most healthcare workers must follow ethical standards established by a professional organization like the American Medical Association.

If you want to be successful in healthcare, these values should be yours. These values are critical to your daily performance and should be evident in every action you take. 

Your Personality Traits

Certain personality traits can make you a good fit for the medical field. You cannot learn these inherent characteristics at school or at another job. They are a part of who you are. These intrinsic traits can show that you would excel in a healthcare job. They are: 

  • Empathy helps you understand and relate to a patient’s feelings. This can be critical to any medical job, even if it’s not patient-facing. Feeling a person’s pain is universal to healthcare. Understanding how a patient will respond to a medication or a procedure can help researchers be more effective, and administrators who empathize with employees can be better managers. 
  • Compassion: Like empathy, you are uniquely suitable for many healthcare positions if you can show warmth and concern with authenticity. Compassion means to “suffer together,” which makes it more action-oriented than empathy. Compassionate people work to take away the suffering. But, it is not always easy to maintain that concern and the motivation to help that comes with it.   
  • Emotional stability will allow you to cope with the stress of caring for others and avoid burnout. Emotional stability comes from emotional intelligence, or the ability to understand what you are feeling and to react (or not react) to those feelings appropriately. Emotional stability will allow you to work well with different types of people, from peers to patients.
  • Resilience is another trait that comes from emotional intelligence. As we saw during the pandemic, working in healthcare can be stressful. You are best suited for a healthcare job if you have the grit and fortitude to handle stress well or even thrive in stressful situations.
  • Adaptability is the ability to adjust to change, which is critical in healthcare. In many jobs, your work day will change from one day to the next. You may work in different healthcare settings and environments or care for many different kinds of patients with different medical needs. Also, many medical professionals’ schedules are variable. You may see this as a challenge or a burden. If you see it as a challenge, you will succeed in many healthcare positions.
  • Detail-oriented: Because people’s lives and health depend on them, most healthcare professionals must also be attentive to detail. One missed, or incorrect detail can be a matter of life or death. You must be very methodical in your work and be willing to spend the time to make sure every detail, whether it be a prescription, procedure, invoice, or schedule, is correct. 
  • Again, accountability is also crucial in healthcare because people’s lives are often at stake. You show accountability when you are willing to accept responsibility for your actions. For example, you own a mistake at work, fix it immediately, and use it as a learning experience instead of denying it happened. 
  • Excellence is a personality trait that many people say they have, but few show it with consistency. Delivering excellence at work means being consistent in quality, standards, attitude, and character, which is critical to having a successful healthcare career.

These are essential characteristics you should have to work in the medical field. You’ll notice that many of these personality traits are closely tied to the values we discussed above. We are creating a comprehensive personality profile that gives you valuable insights into if you’d love a job in the medical field. But there are other details to consider, namely your interests, experience, and education. Let’s move on. 

Your Skills

Every job in the medical field requires a different skill set, experience, and education. However, there are a few common skills and attributes that most roles need. These are called transferable skills or soft skills. Here are a few of them.

  • Good communication skills are essential to anyone working in the medical field. The ability to clearly explain diagnoses, medications, treatments or other complicated details to patients and team members can make the job more fulfilling. Not to mention the important ability to explain billing and other administrative nuances to people unfamiliar with medical and insurance terminology. Excellent medical care only happens when everyone involved clearly understands the current situation, the treatment or strategic plan, and the expected outcome of that plan. That occurs with excellent communication. 
  • Active listening is a skill that takes work. Humans tend to speak before listening. The most important part of communication is knowing when to be silent. Active listening happens when you focus on what the other person is saying instead of thinking about your response. You will not be a good healthcare worker without the ability to listen, observe, understand, and then respond to another person’s point of view. 
  • Problem-solving skills: You will face a new challenge or problem to solve every day, often on a very short deadline. You need to think on your feet, work through a problem with logic and speed, and produce a solution that everyone (patient, co-worker, superior, or maybe all) is happy with. 
  • Teamwork: Many healthcare employees work as a part of a team. If you can work in and/or lead a high-functioning team, you would be an asset to any healthcare setting. Your job success could depend on your team working well together to ensure the office or medical department runs like clockwork.

For more information on the best transferable skills for the medical field, please read our recent blog on the subject. 

Your Education

The demand for healthcare employees in Arizona is high. Healthcare is one of the best fields you can work in today, and you may not need a medical degree or even a bachelor’s degree. There are plenty of well-paying jobs available right now that you will love, and you don’t need anything more than a high school diploma, certification, or an associate degree. 

For example, with a high-school diploma or GED, you may become a home health aide, medical receptionist, nursing assistant, medical secretary, medical coder, or billing coordinator. 

With a training certificate, you may qualify as a certified medical assistant, certified nursing assistant, licensed practical nurse, registered behavior technician, certified professional coder, and certified pharmacy technician. 

With an associate degree, you could be a medical assistant, licensed practical nurse, nursing assistant, massage therapist, lab assistant or technician, medical records specialist, case manager, medical transcriptionist, occupational or physical therapy assistant, occupational health and safety technician, or respiratory therapist.

If you have a bachelor’s degree, you could become a registered nurse, licensed social worker, bookkeeper, medical office manager,  lab technician, nutritionist, dietitian, or recreational therapist. Sometimes, you will also need to complete an internship or supervised work time. 

With a master’s degree, you could pursue a career as a nurse practitioner, mental health counselor, nurse anesthetist, physician assistant, occupational therapist, or speech-language pathologist. You will most likely need to complete an internship or residency as well. 

With a doctoral degree, you could be a dentist, optometrist, pharmacist, physical therapist, physician, surgeon, psychologist, psychiatrist, or podiatrist. In most cases, you will also need to complete an internship, residency, or supervised work time. 

Adding What Makes You, You

The healthcare field is human-centered, which means that every job is unique. There is more than one personal work profile that matches best with any position in the medical field. The variety available in the setting, environment, workload, tasks, and expectations is vast. For example, if you are an introvert, you may work better in a smaller office with less patient care. If you are an extrovert, you may love the variety of working in a hospital setting where you will meet new patients daily. If you are great with numbers but blood makes you faint, a billing or coding job would be a better fit for you. If you love to solve complex problems, research may be perfect. There are also plenty of IT, human resources, marketing, administrative, finance, and other nonmedical positions available in healthcare. 

It’s the month of love, and while many are looking for Mr. or Mrs. Right, you may be looking for the perfect job. Using the basics of a dating profile, take your job search into your own hands. Create a job profile that outlines your personal values, characteristics, skills, and interests, and use this profile to find a job that matches who you are. A job that you will love. 

We are here to help. If you think the perfect job is waiting for you in healthcare, give us a call today at (602) 468-6300. We’ve got the connections and experience to help you find it.

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