How long is the wait for your partnership?

The tradition of promising early partnership to new associates lives on in most specialties. The promises show up in new-doctor contracts stipulating when the group will promote to co-owner or partner.

Most practices require a new physician to put in about two years before achieving partnership—not long enough, in my opinion. It’s fine to promise you’ll consider making a good young associate your partner, but some contracts flat out guarantee it. And they promise partnership based solely on time employed, not necessarily on performance or fit with the practice.

Don’t be pressured by young candidates’ expectations. In many specialties—except primary care—there’s a fair supply of young candidates today, so don’t rush to fill a vacancy. It’s more important to ensure that your new associate really qualifies to be your partner.

This nugget was adapted from Solving Partner-Level Challenges, from Advisory Publications, a division of HCPro, Inc. To order, click here or call their Customer Service Department at 800/650-6787 for more information.

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