Seven Secrets to Becoming a Successful Intrapreneur

APRIL 16, 2013
Philippa Kennealy, MD, MPH, CPCC, PCC
For the past seven years, my focus has been working with physician entrepreneurs (actual and wannabes) — those adventurous souls who set off to brave the wilds of self-employment.

More recently, I've been receiving questions such as this one:
"I have an entrepreneurial spirit but my circumstances don't permit me to take a chance on leaving the organization where I have been an established and quite successful medical director for four years. What advice can you give me?"

While I am not in the advice-giving business (coaches don't typically advise — instead they facilitate self-discovery of answers and self-fulfillment of potential), I have given this question much thought, and here are my musings.

The secret is to become an active physician intrapreneur!

I love this part of the definition of intrapreneur (first coined in 1978):
"A person ... who takes direct responsibility for turning an idea into a profitable finished product through assertive risk-taking and innovation."

I've alluded to "innovation" in health care in the recent past. "Risk-taking" is part of the definition of an entrepreneur, and "assertive" suggests a willingness to step out of the shadows, into the sunlight and start heading down the path of being a contributor, and even a potential disruptor!

What then are the seven secrets to becoming a successful physician intrapreneur? Find out.


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