A/Prof. Andrew Pearce1
1Medstar Emergency Medical Retrieval Service , Adelaide Airport Export Park , Australia
So you have made it, you are working as an aeromedical specialist and you love your job. You deserve your position, you have earned it and you have worked so hard to get to where you are. You love the challenges in what you do, what you know and how you fit into the system. Your peers respect you and seek your guidance regularly. Can it get any better? Well fast forward another 5, 10, 15 years and are you still going to be there? Have you thought about life after aeromedical work? Do you have an exit strategy or is it your right to remain in the position until they carry you out in a pine box?
Why would I consider an exit strategy? Am I physically able to do the job? Is the roster still working in my personal circumstances? Do I still enjoy getting out of bed and coming to work each day?
To say this is complex is an understatement but honestly how often do you talk about this with your colleagues/family/friends? Does it come up in your performance review? Is this a professional, personal or financial decision? What if you had no choice, illness, injury, redundancy?
Its very clear the pathways into most work however the pathways out are less clear and generally more emotive. Through open discussion, raising issues, evaluating options and formulating an exit strategy it is likely to the process will be less controversial/emotive and more openly discussed and hopefully facilitated.