Landing a great rehabilitation position requires more than just knowledge and great skills and the ability to showcase these to potential employers. It also requires drive, confidence, ambition and the ability to go where the job possibilities may lead you. For example, if you're now in one part of the country with your dream job waiting in another; you may have to be willing to take a chance and move.
There are five key components to finding the professional rehab therapist's Holy Grail.
- Be flexible. The more flexible you are with your demands and desires, the more likely it is that you will land the job of your dreams. If you are too rigid in the way that you think about a career, you may find that no job will ever measure up. Keep an open mind about the type of rehab therapy position you are pursuing and be open to different possibilities.
- Make sure you are willing to move to achieve your dreams. Often, the job of your dreams is not waiting for you in your backyard; you have to travel to find it. In fact, this is one of the benefits of being a travel rehab therapist because you get to “try on” various locales and position types until you find the perfect fit for you.
- Beef up your experience whenever possible. The more varied your rehab therapy experience, the more attractive a candidate you will be. Get experience whenever possible. Work full time and then spend some of your downtime doing some pro bono rehab work for a local clinic or community center. You might be exhausted at the thought of giving up your free time, but the experience – and goodwill – earned will take you far in your career.
- Cultivate razor sharp customer service abilities. Rehab therapy is all about the patient and your ability to interact with him or her. Hone your “bedside manner” and customer service skills and learn to be the consummate professional. This is important to any and every potential employer looking for rehabilitation professionals.
- Do not be afraid to advertise your skills. If you do not advertise yourself, who will? Do not be cocky, but do not be afraid to be confident. If you see a job you want, go after it based on your merit, skills and extensive experience.