How To Land Your Dream Job As Hospitalist

I have been a hospitalist for five years now, and I love it. I’m always learning new things, working with smart people, and changing the lives of my patients. 

What could be better? But if you’ve ever tried to get a job as a hospitalist (or another specialty), you know that landing that first position is tough. 

You may think that getting hired is all about having the right degree or experience but it’s not just those things. The way you conduct yourself on the job will make or break your chances at being offered an interview in the future. 

So how can you make sure that your application stands out from all of the other qualified candidates vying for each available position? Here are some tips for making yourself stand out from other candidates when applying for jobs in hospital medicine:

Get To Know The Team Members

Being a part of a team is important, so you should get to know the team members. In addition to knowing who they are and how long they have worked together, you should also find out about the culture of the group. 

Learn about their past successes and ask them about their goals for the future. You can learn more about what’s important to them by asking questions like: “What does success look like for your team?” or “What would you like to accomplish in five years?”

Make sure that all members understand where they fit within the organization and how their work contributes to its overall mission or purpose. 

If possible, find out what makes each person unique so that you can support them outside of work as well as inside it (e.g., hobbies, interests).

Provide Patient-Centered Care

As a hospitalist, you’ll likely be working with patients and their families in the hospital setting. That means that your job will require you to provide patient-centered care. 

The National Quality Forum defines it as “a philosophy of care that focuses on the patient and the patient’s family, emphasizes teamwork.

Improves relationships between providers and patients by increasing communication, fosters shared decision making and provides an environment where patients can receive better care.”

Hospitalists have a unique opportunity to act as partners with their patients, helping them understand their diagnoses and treatment options while providing excellent care. Here are some ways they can do this:

Introduce yourself when you meet someone new; ask them how they’re feeling today or what brings them into the hospital (if applicable). This creates an open line of communication for when important topics arise later on.

Keep tabs on how long each patient has been waiting for an exam or procedure so that no one gets left behind when time is limited and make sure those who need extra attention receive it right away!

Be Considerate Of The Rest Of The Team

Be a good team player. Be willing to pitch in wherever needed, even if it’s not necessarily your job. Take on more responsibilities if you can, and don’t be afraid to ask for help when times get tough.

In other words, be willing to learn new skills and take on new tasks that come with being a member of the hospitalist team.

Take Time To Learn From Other Specialties

A hospitalist should be open-minded and willing to learn from other specialties. Not only can this help you better understand the hospital system and your coworkers, it will also give you a deeper understanding of what your role is within that system. 

For example, if a patient has been in the ICU for several days with no sign of improvement, ask an orthopaedic surgeon or trauma specialist for their opinion on whether surgery would be beneficial. 

By taking time out of your day to educate yourself about other specialties and how they work together with yours, you’ll gain invaluable insight into how best to treat patients.

Promote A Culture Of Collaboration

It’s not enough to be a good doctor you also need to be a leader. When you lead by example, your team will understand what it takes to succeed in their roles and help each other accomplish goals.

Your role as hospitalist is one of collaboration with multiple departments, including cardiology, critical care medicine and surgery. You need to make sure that everyone is clear about their roles and responsibilities before working together on patient care plans.

You can promote a culture of collaboration by:

Having frequent check-ins with your peers (i.e., cardiologists). They know what procedures are being performed on patients in their care; 

If there’s an issue with the patient’s heart function or rhythm at any time during treatment for pneumonia/flu symptoms, we want them involved so that he/she gets timely attention from our team members who specialize in such matters!

Be A Good Teacher

You should be a good teacher. You will be working with other doctors who have different areas of expertise and may not know what you know. You need to be able to share your knowledge with them so that they can learn from it and pass that knowledge on as well.

Learn From Attending Physicians And Nurses

You can learn a lot by observing the attendings and nurses in your hospital.

Learn from their experiences.

Learn from their mistakes, or at least consider them as possible mistakes you might make in the future.

Learn from their successes, especially when it comes to patient care and dealing with other physicians and hospital staff members.

Take advantage of any opportunities to learn from attending physicians’ knowledge about hospital protocols, procedures, or other aspects of patient care (for example, if an attending is teaching an educational session on a particular topic).

Make Yourself Available To Others

One of the best ways to stand out as a candidate is by making yourself available. This means being willing to help others, taking on extra work, and doing whatever it takes to make your colleagues’ jobs easier. 

For example, if someone has a patient who needs their services but they’re not available at that moment, offer to help out. Or perhaps there’s an opportunity for you to take on new responsibilities in order to take some pressure off someone else. 

Another way you can show how dedicated you are is by working weekends and late into the night when necessary and even taking vacation time if necessary!

The final step is going above and beyond what is expected from you: find opportunities where you can show that extra mile (or two or three). 

You might do this by helping other people with their projects or mentoring junior team members so they’re able to achieve more than they thought possible when starting out at their job.

Communicate Effectively In Handoffs

The handoffs are an important part of the job and they’re also one of the most stressful. It’s easy to slip into a bad habit and make a big mistake, so here are some tips to help you communicate effectively during handoffs:

Be concise, clear, and concise. Don’t over-communicate or under-communicate what’s going on with your patients. Don’t assume that everyone else has the same understanding as you do about a patient’s status or treatment plan. 

You may need to ask questions to make sure everyone is on board before moving onto another patient.

Know That You Are Appreciated

It’s important to express your appreciation for the opportunity to work with other people. You should be grateful that they’re making it possible for you to do what you love.

Thanking them when they give you support or help with a task can go a long way toward building trust between team members (and helping you remember their names).

Showing gratitude for the work that others do means more than just saying “thanks.” It also means being sure to show them how much they mean to your life and career and letting them know how much their work matters by thanking them directly, often, and sincerely.

Let Hospitalists Know They Are Appreciated, Too

It’s important to let hospitalists know they are appreciated, too. They often work long shifts and see a lot of patients in a day. While this might not be the most glamorous part of your job, it’s an important one!

Hospitalists are also often the first point of contact for patients and their families, so it’s important that they’re able to connect with them on some level. 

And they may even be the first point of contact for other hospitalists: if you’re trying to reach someone who doesn’t usually take calls or respond to emails during off-hours, try contacting them via text message instead!

Keep An Open Mind About Job Opportunities And Locations

The hospitalist field is wide open, and you can be a part of it in many ways. In addition to the traditional hospitalist role, some opportunities may interest you more. 

For example, if you’re an ER doctor who wants to stay close to trauma care but move away from treating patients on the acute side, a surgical specialty could be right up your alley. 

Or if you love working in rural locations but don’t want full-time employment, consider becoming an independent contractor or working at one of the many telemedicine companies out there (which allow physicians to practice remotely). 

There are also plenty of roles available for physicians who aren’t interested in being on call 24/7; some hospitals offer part-time positions that allow doctors to work only during regular business hours or choose days off each week. 

No matter what kind of employment arrangement works best for your lifestyle and goals as a physician whether it’s full-time…or not!

Talk To People Who Work At The Hospital Or Health System You Want To Work For

Once you have a list of hospitals or health systems that might be a good fit, talk to people who work at these hospitals.

The best way to do this is by having in-person conversations. However, phone calls and email are also helpful. 

You don’t need to know someone personally, but it’s helpful if you do! If you can’t find anyone in your network who works there yet, ask around until someone does (or check LinkedIn).

Once you’ve connected with someone, ask:

  • What’s the culture like?
  • How long have they worked for the hospital/health system?
  • What’s their experience been like as an employee of this organization (or within this department)?

Show Your Passion For Patient Care And Leadership Through Social Media​ Or Your Blog Posts (If You Have One)

A hospitalist is someone who works in the hospital and has medical training. They care for patients who need inpatient care, meaning they need to be in a hospital while they recover from an injury or illness.

Hospitalists are also called resident physicians, because they usually have specialties like family medicine or internal medicine. Hospitalists help coordinate the medical treatment of their patients with other professionals such as surgeons and oncologists.

Landing an interview is harder than it sounds! To land your dream job as a hospitalist, you can work on showing your passion for patient care and leadership through social media posts (if you have one).

Or blog posts that showcase skills and experience from volunteering or working at other jobs that relate to patient care and leadership roles (i.e., nursing assistant).

Expand Your Network With Co-Workers And Colleagues Outside Of Your Current Organization

A strong network of colleagues and friends is important for your career as a hospitalist. You’ll need to be able to build relationships, whether it’s with people from other departments or in different organizations. 

So don’t just stay within your organization spend time getting to know people from other facilities, too.

When networking, remember that it’s not just about making connections and introducing yourself; it’s also about listening, talking and communicating with others. 

As you meet new people and talk with them about their experiences in medicine or life outside the workplace, pay attention to things they say that stand out to you as interesting or funny or otherwise noteworthy (this could be anything from how they handled a difficult patient situation recently to an anecdote about their family). 

If someone says something particularly memorable during conversation with you, make sure they know how much their words meant by letting them know while they’re there.

So they don’t think it was just incidental chatter and then follow up later via email or text so that person knows that what he/she said made an impact on you personally!

Don’t Underestimate The Importance Of “Culture Fit”​

Culture fit can be a strong predictor of success on the job. A recent study by researchers at the University of Utah found that people who are a good fit with their workplace culture tend to stay longer, be more productive and work more efficiently. 

The same study also found that if they’re not a good culture fit, some people leave even before they start working there!

Hospitalists are not just doctors – they’re also nurses and administrators, community health workers and social workers. You’ll need to understand how each role works together in order for your team to function as an efficient unit. 

When it comes time for you to interview for jobs or for your boss or colleagues to evaluate your performance after you’ve been hired.

Ask them questions about how different departments interact with one another so that you can better understand where your skillsets will complement theirs best (and vice versa).


I hope that these tips will help you land your dream job. You will be surprised by how much influence your personality has on whether or not a hospitalist wants to work with you or hire you. 

I’ve seen many people lose out on jobs because they didn’t take into consideration how their personality would fit in with other members of the team. 

Don’t underestimate the importance of “culture fit,” but also don’t forget that it’s not just about being nice, funny, or charming it’s also about being able to communicate effectively and collaborate with others without compromising patient care.