Why Doctors (you) make potentially great Entrepreneurs?
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With an attempt to introduce doctors to the world of business and entrepreneurship, we have launched Entrepreneurship 101-a tailor-made short course covering interesting topics such as How to build a team, How to think about your product or service, How to prepare a Business plan, How to raise funds and How to pitch to investors providing a solid foundation to start with!

For Doctors, the word Entrepreneur might look as long and difficult but it is not. Normally, what thought prevails in everyone's mind is why would doctors, who have already spent eight years in higher education, plus time in residencies, want to invest another two years to learn about business? The perspective of this sentence can only be changed by another contradictory question - “why not?”

The areas of business operations, accounting, finance, strategy, marketing and management are critical in the practice of medicine. Wait and read the above sentence again. Did you feel, being a doctor, you are doing all these things mentioned above on a routine and daily basis?

There is a common myth that doctors are lousy business people. These points on a common ground reality that is shared by doctors and entrepreneurs will definitely bust this myth. Moreover, it will also give you an idea of the underlying potential that you have already acquired from your experience in med school, residencies or during treating your patients.

1. They know how to build clinical judgment in their medical and surgical careers. The process is the same for business. Let me explain it to you how. Learning from mistakes is called experience. Learning from experience is called clinical judgment. The process is the same for business as well as with entrepreneurship. Very few entrepreneurs have not had their share of mistakes of failed startups. The successful ones learn from those mistakes and have a judgment about pursuing the next opportunity. While in the case of Docs, it is an intrinsic ability to make clinical judgements.

2. Entrepreneurship is about research and experimenting, something doctors do well. Doctors do this every day, day in and day out, with their patients.

3. Doctors are used to dealing with uncertainty. Like businesspeople, doctors make decisions with incomplete information. Sometimes they have to do things based on their gut. In fact, they do so more than they would like to admit. Only about 25-35% of medical decisions are based on scientific evidence.

4. Doctors know how to question, observe, connect and associate: core entrepreneurial skills. In The Innovators DNA, Christensen et al. noted the core skills of innovators are: questioning, associating, connecting, experimenting and observing. Doctors have them all.

5. Doctors know how to assess risk and make on the spot cost-benefit decisions. Every medical decision is based on the risks versus the benefits.

6. Doctors can fulfil core entrepreneurial roles. They can be technopreneurs, market perceivers, managers, and/or investors.

7. Doctors have access to patients and understand clinical issues more than anyone else. They live in a world of market opportunity.

8. Doctors have the courage to know when something won’t work or should be ended. Doctors deal with such circumstances on a routine basis when dealing with patient’s treatment.

So, the next time someone raises their eyebrows when you tell them you are a physician entrepreneur, hand them a card with this list on the back of it. Maybe they’ll offer to invest in your idea.

For weekly bulletins, video lectures, sample videos and more information on Entrepreneurship 101 for doctors, click on: https://www.plexusmd.com/md/course/e101/48
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