I am very honored to say that the brilliant and highly respected Dr. Richard Soper is a very dear friend of mine and I have had the pleasure of working with him on a number of occasions. Whenever I speak to people about Richard they have nothing but positive things to say about him and how he operates as a doctor, which has inspired me to wonder what it is exactly that makes him so good at what he does. There are two types of doctors, good doctors and great doctors, and Richard certainly falls into the latter category. If you have dreams of one day becoming a doctor, here is how to be great like Richard.
Communication and empathy are real keys to being a great doctor and these are characteristics which Richard has in spades. There is a common notion that doctors should be aloof and standoffish, when in actual fact this is not what patients expect. Patients want a doctor who cares, they want a doctor who takes their feelings into consideration and they want a doctor who will make them feel better about what is going on.
Whenever I speak with other doctors about Richard one of the first things that they say to me is how studious he still is despite being a doctor for such a long time. Many doctors study hard to become a doctor of course, and they will continue to learn throughout their career in order to stay up to date with the latest treatments and medical breakthroughs. After a while however many doctors rely on their staff and their assistants to keep them up to date on this kind of information but Richard is very different and he will still burn the midnight oil reading through medical papers and research.
Something which Richard also prides himself on is just how thorough he is when working with a patient and trying to get to the bottom of their symptoms. Many doctors are bound by financial restrictions which often limit how much investigative work they are able to do for a patient. Richard however has never paid any attention to such things and he has shown time and time again just how great a doctor he is, because of the lengths he will go to in order to find out what the issue is with a patient.
The biggest difference between good doctors and great doctors is that a great doctor is able to take people with them. Richard always tries to adopt a leadership role with younger medical students and doctors, passing on his knowledge and offering guidance and support to the next generation of medical professionals. Richard now holds a managerial position but he has always been this way, even when he was ‘just’ a doctor.
Anyone who wishes to pursue a career in medicine can learn a great deal from the way that Richard has conducted himself throughout his career.