You are a compassionate person, great with your hands and creative in finding solutions. You enjoyed the sciences at school and thrived under the pressures at university. Your heart is full of hope and aspiration. Does this make you a natural dentist? Is dentistry the right career choice for you?
You spend time shadowing a dentist and realise that you are only at the start of a very long journey. The length of this journey is not defined. You are in control of how far you want to take your career. Is your eventual aim to become a dental provider in a small community where dentistry is managed around your lifestyle? Or perhaps you want to move towards a specialism and become a referral point for all other dentists? Maybe you will find your niche as a solid player on the front line of a large clinic and be happy with not having the pressure of clinic ownership.
Dentistry as a Lifestyle…Is it the right career choice for you?
Career Choices in Dentistry
These are just a few of the wide variety of choices facing young dentists as they set out on their dental career. However,there is no right or wrong answer, it is simply a case of finding out what is right for you…what is good for your life value. Is money your driver, or is providing oral health for everyone your driver? Is time your biggest influence and finding a work/life balance that allows you to pursue other interests?
You are one step closer to happiness. You have made your decision on how you want your life story to play out. Be entirely honest with yourself. However, another way of looking at this is to ask yourself what the rewards for your efforts should be? Is being rewarded with happy and healthy patients enough for you? Perhaps your reward is winning an accolade, or being invited to give a presentation or training session? How important are the material things such as a quality car, a larger house, or a statement watch?
The rewards that you aim to gain from your dental career, almost defines your career path. Do you elect to work in the NHS environment, possibly in a dental hospital or in a local clinic? Perhaps you jump into private dentistry to see more challenging cases and reap higher rewards? Do you look into buying your own dental clinic, or a partnership in one?
Recently, we have seen many dentists launch a secondary earning stream. This could be anything from working for a supplier or manufacturer to singing on TV. In short, dentists are becoming more entrepreneurial. Is this something that you should be considering?
Who Can Advise You?
Talk to as many people around you as you can about your career path, and not just your colleagues in dentistry. People outside the profession may not fully understand the nuances of your choices. They will be able to offer advice on what makes you happy. This is vital. There are too many unhappy dentists around us who have not been honest with themselves and have aimed at the wrong path. We are often too insular in dentistry, especially when talking about our careers. Break this mould and talk to friends and family who have nothing to do with dentistry as they can provide you with the clarity of vision we all need. Most importantly, is dentistry the right career choice for you?
The 5 Questions
Rudyard Kipling’s 5 questions are vital…who, why, where, when and how? Who do I want to work with? Why do I want to work in that type of clinical environment as opposed to another? Where do I want to work? When do I want to work…and when do I not want to work? How do I find this ideal role? The last question is simple…you are on the right website to find a wide variety of roles across the UK and soon in Australia. We wish you every success in finding the right career path for you, and to finding the right role to achieve happiness.
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Good Luck With Your Job Search
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