You’ve been offered a contract. In many cases, the initial contract is a standard document with some wiggle room. Remember, you’ll have to live with the conditions of this contract for a long time, so it is essential to understand the offer in its entirety.
Start by reviewing the general terms of the agreement. You probably have a good idea of the salary being offered, the position, and the insurances from previous correspondence, but the devil can indeed be in the details. A legal review is a prudent investment at this point as it can help identify areas of ambiguity before the final contract is written. You may also want to have a colleague or mentor review the document before proceeding. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you read through the contract:
Make a note of any areas of discrepancy based on previous conversations
Often, something that may have been verbally mentioned during initial interviews is not included in the contract. This shouldn’t be an automatic red flag. Sometimes, a practice may have interviewed several clients and it could be a simple oversight, but be sure to address it upfront. So long as both parties agree that it was an oversight, it shouldn’t be considered a negotiation concession and can be easily amended.
Make a list of areas you would like to discuss.
Mentally classify the issues in order of importance to you. Justify areas where you want to see improvement. Don’t just say, “I’d like an extra week of vacation.” Who wouldn’t? It is much more compelling to present facts of the vacation time for professionals at a similar level. Your ETS representative may be able to supply you with some useful information.
Go into the meeting with a plan.
You don’t have to take over the meeting, but be sure all the areas you wish to be covered are addressed. Don’t be afraid to take notes.
Be willing to negotiate but try to stay positive and pleasant.
You are a candidate they want—that’s why you got this far.
In the end, this is an agreement between someone who is entrusting their career to a practice and a practice owner who is entrusting their reputation to you. Our experience is that these things generally work out. But don’t sign anything until you’ve read the third part of our series!
The Contract Series: Part 3 – Before You Sign
May 13, 2021
You’ve interviewed. You’ve negotiated. You’re ready to sign. Almost. There are still a few details to confirm. The first, and perhaps most obvious, step you should ...
The Contract Series: Part 1 – Preparing For Negotiations
Apr 13, 2021
You’re in discussions with an employer for a position that looks like a great fit, and it looks like you’ll be offered a contract. However, one of the most critical aspe...
How to Turn Down a Job Offer Professionally
Sep 23, 2020
In 2020, landing a position with an OB/GYN practice can be a challenge, particularly in the wake of a worldwide pandemic. In recent months, however, we've seen a significant u...
Breach of Contract: What Happens Next?
Jul 1, 2020
Most practices have some type of contract with associates. For the most part, these agreements work well. But sooner or later, you are likely to have an employee seek to leave...
Associate Contracts: What to Look For in Your Next Contract
May 13, 2020
A manila envelope appears on your desk with your new contract. It’s all there in black and white—the terms, salary, perks, and expectations. While an employment contrac...
Base Salary vs Actual Compensation
Dec 11, 2019
Not all salaries are created equal. All too often, we find that job seekers will overlook a potentially rewarding opportunity solely because the base salary offered is lower t...
What to Do When an Associate Doesn’t Want to Renew Their Contract
Aug 15, 2019
Maybe the contract renewal has been with the associate for a while and you’re hearing radio silence. Maybe they’ve told you they have no interest in renewing. Either way, ...
Are You Ready to Be a Partner?
Jun 3, 2019
There comes a time in every office when taking on an additional partner makes good business sense. Partners, unlike associates, are part owners of a practice. Practice owners ...
The Truth About Counteroffers
Jan 31, 2019
You've just accepted a great new job offer. The only problem is now your current employer is offering an enticing counteroffer to make you stay. As OBGYN clinics and practices...