Use of an Individualized Development Plan to Identify Career Development Needs in Prospective Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Fellows.
BACKGROUND: Mentorship is a key aspect of leadership development for orthopaedic surgeons, but there are few formalized mentorship programs in medical training. The individualized development plan (IDP) is a tool that potentially improves mentorship opportunities through identifying specific competency deficiencies and facilitating communication with mentors. PURPOSE: To assess the views of prospective orthopaedic surgery sports medicine fellows on the skills necessary for career development and the utility of an IDP for longitudinal career mentorship during a sports medicine fellowship. STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. METHODS: Candidates who interviewed for an orthopaedic surgery sports medicine fellowship voluntarily completed an anonymous IDP as well as a survey to assess their perceptions of the IDP tool to define their career goals and its use for longitudinal mentorship. The IDP included quantitative and qualitative responses for the self-assessment of multiple skill domains (general research, teaching, professional, interpersonal, leadership, and management) using a 5-point Likert scale (1 = needs improvement, 5 = highly proficient). Quantitative results were analyzed using analysis of variance and Student t test. RESULTS: A total of 25 candidates completed the IDP and survey. The mean ± standard deviation composite score of all skill domains was 3.62 ± 0.91. The candidates' greatest deficit was in grant writing (2.28 ± 0.94; P < .01), while their greatest strength was getting along with others (4.52 ± 0.65; P < .01). Candidates identified, as short-term goals, obtaining a fellowship training position, completion of research/academic projects, and improvement of surgical skills; their common long-term goals included having a role in an academic institution, professional society, and/or research and innovation environment. The majority of participants agreed that the IDP is a valuable tool to characterize career and personal goals (74%) and facilitate longitudinal fellowship mentorship (83.3%). CONCLUSION: The majority of candidates valued the IDP for their short- and long-term goals. Program implementation of an IDP could be beneficial in allowing trainees to effectively identify areas of weakness and strengths while facilitating efficient communication of these needs to mentors.
Cheah, JW; Cabell, GH; Bonazza, NA; Taylor, DC
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