Being a Happy Program Director


The personal availability and genuine concern for each resident's welfare is the single-most important factor in determining the success of your program, and a successful program is a tremendous asset to a department.

It is possible for Program Directors to feel under-appreciated by their departments, who may seem very concerned about service and only somewhat reluctantly involved in the educational processes.  You can also come to feel exhausted by residents with long lists of expectations.

Here are some suggestions for protecting yourself from fatigue and disillusionment, and to help you enjoy the process:

  • Share the work
  • Ask for positive feedback from the residents and the department, not just problems
  • Share the negative feedback with other RPC members
  • Consider having an Assistant Program Director
  • Report regularly to the Department Head and Department
  • Confer and sympathize with fellow Program Directors informally and through the PGMEC.
  • Savour the success of your residents.
Being a Program Director takes a lot of time and it may be a few years before you see the results of all of your planning, encouragement, and care but the results are incredibly rewarding!