What I Learned from the AAMC Junior Faculty Development Program

Annabel K. Wang, M.D.

"Professional Development Seminar for Junior Women Faculty" – three and one half day conference sponsored annually by the Association of American Medical Colleges, open to 130 participants selected by their respective institutions.

To learn more about candidate selection for future sessions, contact Miki Rifkin, Dean for Academic Affairs, MSSM.

Contact Annabel Wang to borrow and peruse the Program binder (containing hard copies of the slides for the various lectures).

Strengths of the program

  • Formal presentations and more informal workshops defining professional goals, time management and understanding conflict and the various personality types that often lead to conflict within the workplace.
  • Time available for meetings with several of the course directors and speakers.

Highlights and Tips

  • Achieving Professional and Personal Success
  • Define Professional and Personal Goals – Think long (3-5 year) and short (6-12 months) term
  • Prepare a time line for each goal and note progress every 6 months
  • Annually summarize accomplishments in research, teaching, clinical care and administration
  • Evaluate past year's performance and define goals for upcoming year
  • reevaluate goals every 6 months
  • recognize the need to shift goals and focus – do not get locked into one job or institution

Potential Hindrances to Career Development for Women Faculty

  • Less developed networks

    Women with mentors are more successful

  • Less skilled in self-promotion
  • Too modest about career successes

So, market yourself and your skills – PUBLICIZE, NETWORK, volunteer to be on high level committees, increase your national visibility – but, keep in mind the criteria for promotion and tenure

Reevaluate and Prioritize Each Career Activity using COPE criteria

Critical – must be performed for career success

Obligatory – not critical for success but involvement is mandatory

Preferable – enjoyable but not required for professional success

Extraneous – unnecessary for personal or professional development


Time Management

  • Prioritize
  • Use your peak hours for peak activities; conversely, schedule mindless tasks for mindless times
  • Control the mail and emails – do not let emails distract during the day
  • Fight procrastination
  • Take one thing home and DO IT
  • Categorize tasks
    • important and urgent (e.g. project deadline)
    • not important and urgent (e.g. most phone calls)
    • important and not urgent (e.g. journal reading, exercise)
    • not important and not urgent (e.g. recreational reading)
    • REMEMBER the important but not urgent category

Conflict Management

  • Learn to recognize different personality types (e.g. Meyers-Briggs type indicators) – remember that many problems stem from personality differences
  • Use behaviors that facilitate constructive confrontation (such as respect the other person, modulate tone of voice, listen, acknowledge the other party's point, use "I" not "you") rather than sabotage it (such as blaming others, condescension, sarcasm, making demands or threats, ignoring the other person's feelings, spur of the moment confrontation in a public space)
  • Determine if it is your problem to solve
  • Define the pertinent issues, primary players, other stakeholders in the conflict
  • Determine what matters most, what is at stake, what elements are you willing (and able) to change
  • Focus on issues relevant to the situation

*The final version of the experts' presentations have been edited by Sandra K. Masur, Ph.D.(WFG President), Miki Rifkin, Ph.D.(WFG Vice President) often from notes of Kathryn Kaplan, Ph.D.,MSSM Consultant, Organizational Development.

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