The Entrepreneurial MD for Women

Finding the balance between medicine and business

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Philippa Kennealy MD MPH CPCC PCC

Philippa Kennealy MD MPH CPCC PCC

Philippa Kennealy is President and founder of The Entrepreneurial MD. She is a business advisor, coach and teacher to physicians grappling with the challenges of launching, building or growing their own successful practices or businesses.

She is a board-certified Family Physician who left her own private practice in 1996 to embark on an administrative career as first Medical Director and then CEO of UCLA-Santa Monica Medical Center. Subsequently, she served as Executive VP in two internet start-up companies, before launching her first coaching and speaking business, Oya Consulting.

Philippa is passionate about professional development for physicians that permits them to reinvigorate their careers and overcome burnout. As reported to her repeatedly, physicians long for more control over their lives. She believes that entrepreneurship is one way to reintroduce physicians to their own creativity and resourcefulness. Her experience of working with physicians has shown her that, with encouragement, a belief in their own abilities, and a pragmatic approach, they are highly capable of making their inventive ideas a reality. They are, after all, a hard-working, dedicated, smart group of people!

Physician Success With Teeny Efforts …

  The Term “Grit” Is In The News At Present.If you didn’t already know this, “Grit” is the term coined by psychologist Angela Duckworth to describe a quality that research has shown to be a key predictor of success in life. In her recently released book of the same title (A), Duckworth elaborates on just how powerful the combination of passion + perseverance is, and how it can be developed intentionally. What Does This Have To Do With My Post Today? I’ve been intrigued by this topic for some time, in a somewhat abstract way. As a m...
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The key secret for moving into your nonclinical physician career

I bet you’re proud of accomplishing your MD, or D.O., or MBBCh (that was mine in South Africa!) . I certainly am. You may be equally proud of that medical school you challenged yourself to get into. We worked very hard to earn these degrees, and they prove something, right? Yes, they do. If you’re in the doctoring business.   However, if you’re looking to transition out of life as a practicing physician into a nonclinical physician career position or opportunity. The answer is closer to a “no”!   My words may come as a surprise, but Gallup research from 2013 shows that whe...
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7 ways to spiff up your resume - for Physicians planning on career change

As a physician coach who works with fellow physicians contemplating career change, I keep an eye out for internet articles highlighting current thinking about helping that change be successful. A recent such article caught my attention and then my interest. Titled “Recruiting: What do recruiters look for in a resumé at first glance?“, it dispelled much of the conventional wisdom we’ve come to accept. These 7 points the article’s author Ambra Benjamin – a recruiter – jumped out at me: In the author’s words (all italicized): I don’t look through stacks of resumes an...
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A mastery tip on time management for entrepreneurial physicians

As I was watching a video from the Small Business School on Working on Your Business, I realized that one of the points they were making had the potential to transform how I think about all the activities and tasks on my action item list each day. This simple time management idea can best be illustrated by the image seen here Too often, folks who are getting a business started find themselves stuck in the gloomy Not Important/Not Urgent corner - fiddling with business card font, creating detailed workshop content or figuring out how to find a product packaging c...
Posted by on in reflections

Does The Ideal Physician Job Really Exist?

Heck, no!” I hear many of you yelling. “I’m sick of being a physician.” “I still like medicine, however my job sucks …” In an article from HealthLeaders Media, “For Stressed Docs, Where to Turn?”, the author writes: A recent survey and report by Physician Wellness Services, a Minneapolis, MN-based company that counsels physicians and hospitals on wellness and related issues, and Cejka Search, a St. Louis, MO-based physician executive search firm, shows more physicians are getting stressed and it’s getting worse. …How bad is the problem? The survey shows that 87% of 2,000 physicians repo...
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Practical answers from Dr Mike McLaughlin regarding physician career change.

If you’re in the market for a physician career change, there’s an invaluable tool to help you through your transition. Naturally, I’d like to say that it’s The Physician Odyssey Program, and leave it at that! However, I’d be remiss as a physician career coach if I didn’t make you aware of Dr. Mike McLaughlin’s book “Do You Feel Like You Wasted All That Training?: Answers About Transitioning to Non-Clinical Careers for Physicians“. An esteemed and dear colleague, Mike McLaughlin, is a plastic and hand surgeon who, after much deliberation, left clinical practice to ultimately st...
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A must have for an entrepreneurial physician is a blog

Okay, this is MY opinionated view ... coming from an entrepreneurial physician for whom a blog has been a hugely valuable business building tool! Most of you know by now what a blog is -- when I first started mine in 2006, they were not nearly as well understood -- but in case you aren't sure, it's "a type of website that is usually arranged in chronological order from the most recent 'post' (or entry) at the top of the main page to the older entries towards the bottom." (I'm quoting Darren Rowse, one of the earliest successful bloggers). The upside of having a ...

Book review: "Ingredients of Outliers"

With areas of my office piled high with books (I am a "book pack rat"), once in a while I'll come across a good read about which I feel the urge to enthuse here on my blog. "Ingredients of Outliers" is such a book. (I must fully disclose that I was mailed a review copy when I learned of the book via a press release). Written by a multifaceted physician/attorney/entrepreneur, John Shufeldt MD MBA JD, this book is subtitled "A Recipe for Personal Achievement". Naturally, the personal/professional fulfillment and happiness physician coach in me was intrigued!! The term ...

A necessity for Physician business leaders: Excellent Active Listening skills

As business-oriented physicians move increasingly into leadership roles, either in your own businesses, or within your organizations, your ability to communicate effectively will become critical. And great communication begins with great listening! Hopefully, as a clinician, you honed the art of listening to your patients. But since we physicians are renowned for interrupting early in a patient visit, and our brains are usually furiously working on diagnosing what is wrong with the patient, it's a fair bet that we are not very good at Active Listening. What is Active Listenin...
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5 fantastic resources for bootstrapping a physician business startup

Bootstrapping your physician start-up can at times seem like an overwhelming task. But with med school loans to pay off and business and daily expenses, it can be hard to come by the extra cash needed to fund your start-up. Fortunately the Internet has come to our rescue with a huge array of services to help launch most low-overhead physician businesses relatively quickly. Using these resources will allow you to gain clients, network with your peers, prepare legal documents, and keep accurate notes. Here are a few of my favorites: Evernote My overall favorite "extra brain" (that does...

The Queen’s Power: A Leadership Fable

Once there was a powerful African Queen who ruled over a prosperous land. When asked about the source of her power, she gazed at her questioner with a mysterious smile. “That I cannot share with you.” Her land stretched from golden shores to forested mountains. Years before, the plains had been rendered dusty by overgrazing, but they were once again a sea of green crops. Small villages crowded the landscape like spots on a cheetah’s back. They buzzed with chickens scratching and children scampering. The women sang while stripping cornhusks, and the men wove hunting tales and watched their p...

Physician leadership coach on "Leading Clinicians & Clinicians Leading"

Despite what you may hope, Accountable Care Organizations and Patient Centered Medical Homes are here to stay and demand heightened physician leadership. As a physician coach working currently with colleagues in various physician leadership training programs, I appreciate that this is no easy skillset for us doctors, who have been trained in the "I'll write the order and tell you what to do" model, to acquire! Here then is a brief summary of a useful NEJM article on physician leadership geared mainly to those physicians who don't have full-time executive or administrative titles but who instea...
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Seven secrets to becoming a successful physician intrapreneur

For the past 7 years, my focus has been working with physician entrepreneurs (actual and wannabes) ... those adventurous souls who set off to brave the wilds of self-employment.   More recently, I've been receiving questions such as this one: "I have an entrepreneurial spirit but my circumstances don't permit me to take a chance on leaving my organization where I have been an established and quite successful medical director for four years. What advice can you give me?"   While I am not in the advice-giving business (coaches don't typically advise -&n...

How to eat an elephant ... one spoon at a time

I have never been a fan of group exercise with its hyper-upbeat classes, pounding music and the need to keep up with the gungho crowd. However, a Groupon coupon many months back lured me into a neighborhood Circuit Works and despite it being exactly that (loudly energized), I have discovered a wholly satisfying way to get a workout. At the beginning of the hour (my "elephant"), I feel a sense of dread ... how am I going to endure this long, hard sixty minutes? At the end, I leave with a sweaty inner glow and a sense of accomplishment that surprises me. I now understand how this works. How I am...
Posted by on in physician business

A must have trait for entrepreneurs: Perseverance

Despite the earnest commitment I made at the beginning of the year, I have failed so far. Instead of blogging regularly (well, at least once a week!),  I've fallen into the "I'm so busy, I can't find the time" trap. This even though I have blocks of time set aside on my calendar for writing. Time to get back onto that horse and ride again! So, how should I do this? I am fascinated by what it takes for children to succeed in life, since I have a kid and want good things for her. In addition, my clients are seeking great results and wondering how they can create invigorating new careers or busin...
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Women physicians thinking of leaving medicine: How can I help?

This blog post is for my women physician readers - or for you to forward to any woman physician you know!   As the host(ess) of the Women Leaving Medicine blog and physician coach owner of The Entrepreneurial MD here, I would love to get your opinion.   I started this Women Leaving Medicine blog over 2 years ago, with an initial post expressing my philosophy and a manifesto. Almost immediately, the blog took on a life of its own as women began finding it and contributing their stories spontaneously. They also began generously supporting one another.   Week after ...
Posted by on in entrepreneurial physician

Innovation, entrepreneurship: in brief a book for physician entrepreneurs

One of the perks of being an active physician blogger is that I am sent books to review from time to time. A book that recently caught my attention is Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the Healthcare Sector: From Idea to Funding to Launch by Luis G. Pareras MD, from GreenbranchPublishing. I've decided to launch a new category I've titled "Books' Big Ideas" in which I plan to summarize the key ideas in books that I believe have merit for you, my readers. Here is a summary of my first book's Big Ideas, with some author background first. Equipped with an MBA, a PhD and a wealth of experience as ...
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A new resource on creative business ideas for physicians

I recently had the opportunity to interview, by email, Rene Andreasi-Bassi, an intriguing entrepreneur in Holland (non-physician), who founded and now manages a website offering creative startup ideas, potential business ideas, business ideas for beginner entrepreneurs and business ideas for college students.   I posed the following questions:   1. What are the main ideas behind your business, buymyidea?   "The main reason for starting my online business was based on the fact that I want to act upon my passions in life. In my case, this is generating cr...
Posted by on in ideas for increased effectiveness

A non-clinical career - steps to achieve the success you are seeking

Once in a while, I coach a physician whose journey to a non-clinical career is so smooth, it is nothing short of perfection. I recently enjoyed this opportunity with a physician client who came to me with a one year-long plan to transition from her current clinical role into some kind of non-clinical job whose description she did not yet even have! She had a very clear timeline based on the exit demands of her current clinical position and was ready to get into action. What struck me most about our initial interactions was how realistic her expectations were! After diligently identifying what...
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Customer service that truly sparkles

I am irate. Infuriated. Enraged. Having set aside a full work day (for the second time) to have new office cabinetry and a desk installed (I had to set aside an entire day because this company is unable tell me in advance what time to expect the installers), I have just learned that "someone dropped the ball and they can't come today"! I had also arranged for my computer guy and an ergonomics consultant to be here - so THREE schedules have been impacted by this rotten service. I was about to spend several thousand dollars. So why do they apparently not care about making me happy? The bigger qu...

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