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pacman2

at first job... and already wanting a change

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Hi! I've seen the many posts on here about job offers, what to look for in first jobs as a new grad, and all that jazz so think you guys are the people to ask. I don't want to go into much detail, but I'm about 2 months into my first job as a new grad, and am already thinking about looking for other opportunities. There are certain aspects of the practice I dislike that would have been difficult to know about from an interviewing alone. I'm not miserable (yet) and could stay longer and obviously have A TON I could learn there, but know I don't want to be there long term. I think I have some guilt that they are spending time training me when I know want to leave eventually. My question is how long do I stay just to get some experience? Or how long do I stay so my CV isn't just looked right over by other employers? What is the recommended way of explaining wanting to change positions so early in your career in a cover letter?

 

Thank you!

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The truth. Diplomatically phrased, of course, but if it wasn't what you wanted, then make sure any other practice that is introspective enough to know you won't be happy with them doesn't extend you an offer, either.

 

Better to have no offer than to be dragged into another practice where the environment is not what you need to thrive.

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The dreaded CV time discrepancies can haunt you. It's ridiculous, really, but that's usually the first thing employers see. If they see your first job last a few months, they are likely to pass on you unless you have a pretty compelling cover letter or an "in" with them. The first things I would think is A) this person has no experience, and B) they probably lost their first job.

 

I ran into this after my first job (<5 months). It is a real issue. It took me almost 4 months to find work. And in interviews you need to be pretty diplomatic with the way you phrase things.

 

So I would say stick it out a full year if you can. If you have to leave it's not the end of your career, but it will be an uphill battle to get back on track.

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1 year is kind of the magic number.  Get to the end of your first year.  You have lots to learn and can learn it in this job.  It's not a waste of your time by any means. 

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... What about quality of life?

 

Should not be runner up in this situation. If it's unsafe or illegal, obviously get out. But what your telling OP is that if he/she is unhappy they have to settle for this 1 year theory. Says who? I lasted 5 months in my previous (recent) job. I had the same feeling your having. This quickly turned into being miserable... Escalated quickly. Had nothing to do with specialty, had everything to do with the doc and me not growing as a clinican. I started looking for opportunities after about 3 months. Found one, and it's been night and day.. Both financially and clinically. Don't settle just because you havent met an obscure time marker that justifies you can move on. My current employer asked maybe one question about leaving my last doc, whom he knew. I told him why and he replied by telling me I will be a perfect fit. Might not always be the case, but it's not black and white like some people claim. I'd certainly recommend finding a job, work out a contract before leaving. Just try your best to make sure the next one is a good fit. I don't thinkone short term employment is a big deal, but back to back would make it a little dicey going forward.

 

Also, knowing that ventana would be in a better situation to hire someone than I am, giving he owns practice he may be the better person to seek advice from. I just wanted to point out that there are positive situations that can come out of this. Each employer is different.

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one year, no less unless it is unsafe or illegal....

 

 

... What about quality of life?

 

 

 Simple answer - suck it up

 

There is a learning curve about where you fit in as a PA, getting your professional feet on the ground, learning from nurses - then having to teach them..... so on and so forth

 

BUT your first job will always be the first job listed on you CV and YOU made a commitment to accept the job.  If you did not do due diligence to figure out what the environment was, or that you changed your expectations - that is on you, not the employer.  SUck it up, learn as much as you can (you will regret not having the open learning environment provided to you by PA school when you are accepted as a revenue producing PA)

 

sorry but I just don't like all these new PA's who take a job, hate it, and simply think that they can quit and move on..... it will stick with you for a long long time, and as well you gave your professional word, and likely signed a contract, to work and be an employee and you need to stand by this. 

 

Only exception is if there is a probationary period i.e. 90 days - where you could leave at the end of...

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Disclaimer: I am not a PA.

 

This has the faint odor of the "I didn't sign up for this" mantra that so many espoused during my time serving in OIF with the Navy/Marines.  I sound about 15 years older than I am when I say this, but every generation has its stereotype western youngster who wants what they want and they want it now.

 

There are a few things you should contemplate here:

 

1) You agreed to employment, you need to see that agreement through and not give up on life just because you don't like the way it's going right now.  Welcome to the thunderdome, sometimes work sucks.

 

2) You're in a profession and earning a paycheck that many people would kill to have, let that give you perspective when you think that you have things bad.  If you need confirmation just visit your ER's waiting room and ask the clerks how many of those patients are there without insurance.

 

3) It may very well be that you are unhappy with aspects of your work environment which are ubiquitous amongst the healthcare profession as a whole.

 

In the middle of Iraq, when temps were soaring toward 150f and I was tasked with manning a machine gun on a 24 hour patrol which is technically against the Geneva Conventions for me as a medic, I set my eyes on what I needed to do and not what I would rather be doing.  I did the same when I was told to rack a round help commandeer civilian commercial trucks at gunpoint.  Put your head down and grind through the worst parts.

 

Hang in there and see your commitment through.  You're only as good as your word.

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Disclaimer: I am not a PA.

 

This has the faint odor of the "I didn't sign up for this" mantra that so many espoused during my time serving in OIF with the Navy/Marines.  I sound about 15 years older than I am when I say this, but every generation has its stereotype western youngster who wants what they want and they want it now.

 

There are a few things you should contemplate here:

 

1) You agreed to employment, you need to see that agreement through and not give up on life just because you don't like the way it's going right now.  Welcome to the thunderdome, sometimes work sucks.

 

2) You're in a profession and earning a paycheck that many people would kill to have, let that give you perspective when you think that you have things bad.  If you need confirmation just visit your ER's waiting room and ask the clerks how many of those patients are there without insurance.

 

3) It may very well be that you are unhappy with aspects of your work environment which are ubiquitous amongst the healthcare profession as a whole.

 

In the middle of Iraq, when temps were soaring toward 150f and I was tasked with manning a machine gun on a 24 hour patrol which is technically against the Geneva Conventions for me as a medic, I set my eyes on what I needed to do and not what I would rather be doing.  I did the same when I was told to rack a round help commandeer civilian commercial trucks at gunpoint.  Put your head down and grind through the worst parts.

 

Hang in there and see your commitment through.  You're only as good as your word.

well said - but that attitude sometimes is lacking in the medical profession.....

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Thanks, I really do appreciate the honest replies. The one year answer is pretty much what I expected to hear. I've really never quit anything in my life and am a proponent of sticking it out, but just started to have some unsettling feelings so decided to post. As I mentioned in the original post, I was curious on people's opinion of how much better is it for an employer to spend the time and energy training you for a whole year, then you leave, than just being there a short amount of time if you know its not going to be a long term/several year position for you. If a whole year is better, than so be it. As people mentioned, unless it becomes unsafe/illegal, as of now, I plan I casually looking maybe in a couple months in case something really catches my eye, then getting more serious looking as time goes on. Now that I've been in the working environment for even just a few months, I do feel more prepared for future interviews and making sure to get full, detailed explanations and clarifications of all questions. I think I asked many of the right questions at this interview and was given good answers, but didn't know any better to not to just take the surface answer without a few more details. There is a little bit of "I didn't sign up for this," because I didn't in some aspects, and at the same time, it is also the employers responsibility to be open and honest. 

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hey pacman don't worry about it. Those telling you to suck it up are idiots. No one should have to suck it up. This is your life, it's what you do for a living. You need to be happy. You slaved away in PA school and went into heavy debt, you've made sacrifices that very very few people have done in academia. Of course there's a period of being uncomfortable (learning staff names, personalities, learning the computer with medical records etc...) but in no way should you have the mindset of sucking it up. The second you feel like you gave it a solid effort and can see where it's generally going to head, I would feel only at that time would it be appropriate to leave. I gave my one job about 6 months, then I got another offer so I took it and I've been so happy I did. As far as the other company? Ef them. I'm not going back there, they see people come and go all the time. It's dog eat dog out there and no one will look out for you except yourself, always remember that. Admin and SP's might be your best friends one second but all that can change, what matters is watching out for yourself and striking whenever the hell you feel like it. So put in a solid effort, be professional in your reasoning and then go on to your next gig in the name of having a nice happy life. And if your next employer has any trouble with your "timeframe" then ef them as well, they probably are the miserables a-holes "sucking it up" themselves for their position.

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to  myironlung

 

 

first off - best not to make generalizations about those "a-holes" toughing it out..... I was one of them as PAs were trying to advance in my area, since then they have.  And I proudly own my own practice and have a dream job, and worked with some great people. I can use pretty much any prior employer as a recommendation, as I never left them out to dry, and now as a practice own I see this as "professionalism issue" that is seemingly forgotten in the younger generation who wants the dream 100k job but does not understand how hard this work is some times and how if the money is not flowing in, it can't flow out.

 

The "gotta be a professional" and the the rest of your post truly contradict one another.  As a brand new PA you do not have any idea which way is up for the first 6 months of a job.  You 'might' be able to tell if a job is unsafe or illegal, but that is about it.  As for knowing that a job stinks, or that you are sure it is not for you - is simply not possible for a new grad, who is just trying to get by......  

 

So please don't make generalizations about people you have no idea about, and please make sure your posts don't contradict themselves - be a professional - and screw them just don't go together.

 

 

 

Feel free to search any of the the thousands of posts on this topic on this forum and realize this question has been answered over and over again by PAs on this forum (both new and old) and the same 'one year' advice always comes up......

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to  myironlung

 

 

first off - best not to make generalizations about those "a-holes" toughing it out..... I was one of them as PAs were trying to advance in my area, since then they have.  And I proudly own my own practice and have a dream job, and worked with some great people. I can use pretty much any prior employer as a recommendation, as I never left them out to dry, and now as a practice own I see this as "professionalism issue" that is seemingly forgotten in the younger generation who wants the dream 100k job but does not understand how hard this work is some times and how if the money is not flowing in, it can't flow out.

 

The "gotta be a professional" and the the rest of your post truly contradict one another.  As a brand new PA you do not have any idea which way is up for the first 6 months of a job.  You 'might' be able to tell if a job is unsafe or illegal, but that is about it.  As for knowing that a job stinks, or that you are sure it is not for you - is simply not possible for a new grad, who is just trying to get by......  

 

So please don't make generalizations about people you have no idea about, and please make sure your posts don't contradict themselves - be a professional - and screw them just don't go together.

 

 

 

Feel free to search any of the the thousands of posts on this topic on this forum and realize this question has been answered over and over again by PAs on this forum (both new and old) and the same 'one year' advice always comes up......

 

No you're wrong. You can be professional while resigning by stating you are not happy and you have tried x/y/z and have put up with the "introductory" period of the few examples I gave like learning computer software, learning office personality types, office flow of patients and typical schedule fluctuations, learning how to delegate your time etc..The "screw them" aspect deosn't come from a literal verbal altercation with them but comes with not caring what those "a-holes" think when you explain yourself to them why you're leaving i.e not happy, through a rational well thought out explanation. If they don't like it then they aren't worth your time. Who can blame you for getting out of a miserable job despite an appropriate effort as opposed to a general time frame? Get it?? And its great you have your dream job, but don't make it seem like its only because of exactly the way you got there by "sucking it up." If you think that it would have been impossible to get there by any other means then yes, like i've stated before, you're an idiot. There's always more than one way to get to where you want.

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It would be helpful to get some more info about your job if you really want the best advice.  There may be changes we can suggest to make this job more bearable, or if we learned more about it may recommend you change sooner, or can make a change within the system, etc etc.

 

Anyway I am going to go against the grain and say that the appropriate time to leave is whenever you want if you have another job lined up.  I am willing to argue that more people do this than the replies on this forum would imply.  Besides, if you have another job lined up, you quit your current job then stay at the new place for 2-3 years, I don't think this would be an issue.  It's very easy to say "I got the wrong idea in the interview, wass brand new so took my first offer, stuck it out for __ months but then was offered a new position through a friend so decided to make a change" etc etc.  Now say the 2nd job you then leave in under a year, then yes you are creating a bad track record.  So learn from your mistakes, which it sounds you already are.

 

Both in and outside of medicine I have never really "stuck it out" any longer than needed - that is, if I am unhappy with a job and need a change, I will find a new job while still working my current one, then change.  That being said, most my jobs I have kept for a long time, I do not job hop, but sometimes there is need for a change.  Life is too short and in the long run, so long as your next job you don't do the same, I would argue it is fine to change now.  Again, having more info would be very helpful.

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This post is exactly what I am going through. Six months into my first PA job, hating it, but feel guilty about all the training so I say nothing. I know exactly what I hate about it too. I guess it is best to stick around for 1 year. 

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Ironlung-

 

You're out of line and your posts reek of smug millennial entitlement. This is the OPs first job. No one is implying you need to be miserable first before you can have satisfying work, but it can take some time to find a good fit. 

 

The other thing I notice is that new grad PAs have a skewed perception of their market value right out of school. We all know school sucks and we all have debt. But YOU signed up for it, and if you are a new grad and you have ZERO bargaining power. There is a million more of you. You might have to "suck it up" for a bit to actually have enough career capital to get such a job.

 

All that said, pacman2, if you are totally miserable it cant hurt to look elsewhere. I still recommend a year if you can tolerate it. Just don't make it a pattern. Most people hiring you will be a generation or two older, and will flag you for a malcontent if you have a spotty CV.

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Stop and think about patient care and quality of work.

IF you seriously HATE this job and resent being there - is your quality of work suffering?

Not that you would intentionally harm anyone - but are you ALL THERE for the patients.

If the answer is no - LEAVE quickly.

Do not harm a patient and do not bruise your integrity and professional skills.

Nothing worse than a half-ass job or mental absence of a provider when patients count on YOU.

 

At 25 years in - I don't care about resumes anymore or how long someone stayed at a job - corporate medicine sucks and drives people to greener pastures. Docs have attitudes and shit happens.

I made a horrible mistake and signed on with a quite mentally messed up doc whose husband was the office manager and things were hokey, immoral and damn near illegal. It took me a while to find a suitable job so I ended up at one year. The State Attorney General called me at home to ask about my knowledge of fraud and I kept everything above board and well documented. I would have left at a moment's notice to get out of there.

 

Do right by your patients and respect your own integrity.

What your resume looks like won't matter if you hate your job and do a crappy job.

 

My very old 2 Cents...........................

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I left my first job after 3.5 months (gave them 1 month notice 2.5 months in). I had another offer before giving notice. I talked to several people (PAs and MDs) I respect and they all agreed that if I knew I was not going to stay long-term then it was actually better to leave sooner rather than later. Technically my first 90 days were a "trial period" since my retirement benefits did not star until after then. The practice paid my DEA, AAPA, and credentialing fees at the hospital they admitted to. I was completely stressed about how it would look, if they would be mad, etc. I'm not posting all my real reasons for leaving publicly (they were legit and it is doubtful anyone here would criticize my choice if they knew all the issues). However, I gave the office a reason for leaving that allowed me to keep a good relationship and all bridges intact. They even bought a cake and signed a card wishing me the best at my new job. My former SP and I have stayed in contact. I am now employed in my dream position. Sometimes life has some funny twists and turns and if you stay humble, work hard, have a good attitude, and remain professional: I do believe you can ignore the "make sure you stay one year" advice. I'm sure glad I did.

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There is no reason to stay a year if you have a job lines up. Just don't make it a habit as others have said.

 

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

 

 

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Hopping on this thread, I'm in a similar boat.  Probably going to stick it out a year but....

 

Took a job with a low-average starting salary as a new grad in November, was told I would be doing acute/same-day care at a family medicine clinic working 4 10 hour shifts per week.  Sounded pretty dreamy.  Turns out I'm doing mostly pain med refills for patients who wait too long to make an appointment with their PCP and can't get in before they run out of meds (#180/month of percoset or #300/mo codeine is scary for me to write as a new grad, even if it's what they've been chronically managed on by their PCP MD in the office).  Tons of Adderall, pain meds, benzos.  Several times a week I see people on both benzos and adderall for refills.  Eeek.  I don't like practicing this way but it's the culture of the clinic and an expectation that I will do this for our patients.  The other visits are mostly coughs and colds, not very satisfying stuff, and I spend a huge amount of energy each day convincing people that they don't need a z-pack for their 2 days of cold symptoms or sinus infections even if they've gotten them for every sniffle in the past.   I didn't see this sort of thing during rotations, but maybe this is pretty typical in family med??? 

 

Things could be waaaaay worse.  The people I work with are generally nice and helpful.   I know I sound like a whiner, and I've never quit a job at less than a year in, but I don't like practicing like this and it's not very fulfilling (plus the surprise one saturday of work per month that I wasn't told about until after I started working and not compensated extra for really bummed me out).  Maybe I'm just whining and should stick it out.   Sorry for rambling.

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Look at the abx for the snot/cough pts. as a proactive way to save them a f/u visit in a week or two but instruct/handout sheet with time indicators as to when and with what sx. to fill Rx.. We just did a quick informal survey since we do f/u calls at my emp. clinic and found that 65% held off on filling same. Now, those same folks will be back in 2 months with allergies but they pay the salary. No one can complain that you didn't give them what they KNEW that they needed.

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Husky99:  Nothing requires you to refill the #180 a month of percocet, etc.  You just give the exact amount the patient needs to get to their next appointment.  So if it is 10, then it's ten.  It is a big red flag if you are EXPECTED to refill these meds, and you can have the discussion with patients on the appropriate dosing of these medications, and offer them a tapering schedule and alternate therapy, plus referral to a pain management clinic. 

 

Be very careful with the prescribing.  Very careful.  Practice evidence based medicine.

 

How many other providers do you work with?

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