Last Summer I was sitting at my desk with a tongue like a husband in a lingerie shop. A dozen pictures of New Zealand changed my career path in a heartbeat. Space, stillness, dense, native forest, snow capped mountains, and spectacular coastline, interspersed with urban landscapes and inner city buzz.
Shortly after choosing the cover for Working Holidays in New Zealand, I was finalising arrangements for a working holiday of my own. I wrote down three things that defined my ideal job, then put them – and Auckland- into Google. One of the services, the Kari centre, ticked all three boxes. The clinical director replied to my email with speed and enthusiasm. A week later I had a telephone interview. The morning after, my Blackberry was buzzing with good news: a job offer. If it sounds straightforward, it was.
How far do you go for career development? 12,000 miles seems a long way, but more and more UK doctors are going similar distances. One of the most visible differences at last December’s BMJ Careers’ Fair, compared to previous years, was how many exhibitors came from down under. Whether it’s disillusionment with the NHS, uncertainty of MMC, or inspiration from Lord of the Rings, a lot of UK doctors are considering Antipodean adventures.
Through this blog, I can report back home in real time. For instance, we can catch up with some of the GPs featured in the Working holidays in New Zealand article, meet sports doctors, ski doctors, doctors who commute between hemispheres, others who develop surgical simulators and doctors who have learned to fly. Of course, I’ll also give you the lowdown on applying for a job in another hemisphere, telephone interviews, and all the other practical stuff you need to do. Think of Careering Around as Career Focus with byte.