Choosing whether to look for a salaried position or taking the leap into private practice can be a daunting task. Sue Scharf RD(SA) outlines some pro’s and cons of private practice to help you decide whether or not private practice is for you.
Pro’s of private practice:
- Determining your salary to a certain degree (based on input)
- Working hours are fairly flexible
- Leave can be planned according to your own circumstances.
- Opportunities to use your own initiative, develop your own working methods, and implement your own ideas, which contribute to work satisfaction.
- Design your own work environment and atmosphere
- More personal patient contact
Con’s of private practice:
- Being your own boss is demanding in it’s own way
- Workload and income variable and unpredictable.
- High overhead expenses.
- No income during vacation.
- No income during sick leave.
- No pension fund, unless provision has been made for a retirement annuity.
- Work environment can be lonely and one can feel isolated.
- A home-based private practice can have certain disadvantages: the office and home have to be separated; and work has to be consciously separated from home activities.
- Rental of a consulting room involves financial obligations.
- It takes time to establish a practice – thus personal income only increases over time.