Hi everyone, welcome to the introductory episode of Doctor Hustle. My name is Bassam Zahid, I am a first year resident in emergency medicine, and I’ll be your host as we explore the leadership, entrepreneurship, and creativity of doctors, dentists, and other health professionals both in and outside of medicine.

During medical school, underneath the weight of books and exams and studying, I remember thinking that I was getting boring. I wasn’t as spontaneous as I used to be. The part of me that used to want to strategize, to explore, to create was slowly succumbing to the mind numbing, soul crushing onslaught of coloring in the lines, following a narrow, well-paved path, and memorization and regurgitation.

As I tried to redefine my medical school experience, and therefore my life, I searched for examples all around me. Historically, the creatives in healthcare tend to be writers. From the physician-poet William Carlos Williams to Michael Crichton, author of classics like Jurassic Park and The Lost World, to Atul Gawande, the author of The Checklist Manifesto and Better .

But I didn’t want to just be a writer. Everywhere I looked, it seemed like the modern “creatives” were starting companies, building apps, and making art. I wanted a piece of that action! And I was relieved to discover that doctors are also using their incredible talents to put their creative stamp on the world.

These doctors are executives and humanitarians, writers and venture capitalists, artists and entrepreneurs. They are politicians and designers. Some of them are reshaping healthcare, while others are extending their influence into media or into business. Most essential to the point of this podcast, they are leaders. Mavericks. Pioneers.

Personally, I am interested in the way technology and the arts can spur innovation in healthcare. Studies in creativity show it is often at the crossroads of unrelated disciplines that novel ideas can evolve into innovations that can disrupt industries. That is where Doctor Hustle plans to set up shop.

We plan to interview the healthcare leaders who are pursuing the creative and entrepreneurial passions above and beyond clinical medicine. We want to dig into questions of leadership, motivation, risk, time-management, and of course, the art of the hustle.

In the book, The River of Consciousness, based on a lifetime of personal essays, the renowned neurologist, bodybuilder, motorcycle enthusiast, and author, Oliver Sacks wrote:

“Creativity involves not only years of conscious preparation and training but unconscious preparation as well. This incubation period is essential to allow the subconscious assimilation and incorporation of one’s influences and sources, to reorganize and synthesize them into something of one’s own.”

Consider this podcast a tool for the conscious and unconscious preparation needed to develop your creative potential. We’ll hear directly from those that have paved the way so that our travels can be easier.

The podcast will be released twice a month and available on iTunes and SoundCloud. Show notes and links from the show will be available on the website,, as each episode is released.

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram at doctor.hustle and Twitter at doctor_hustle for the latest news on upcoming shows and information about our guests. And if you have any ideas, recommendations, or suggestions, feel free to send an email to

In his essay on Creativity, Oliver Sacks continued…

“It takes a special energy, over and above one’s creative potential, a special audacity or subversiveness, to strike out in a new direction once one is settled. It is a gamble as all creative projects must be.”

So stack your chips, guard your hand, and join me on this grand experiment. Doctor Hustle: A study in medical leadership, entrepreneurship, and creativity.

Selected Links
People Mentioned

Music by Lee Rosevere – Sad Marimba Planet from

Update July 9, 2018 – In order to get the most coverage on all podcast stores (iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Alexa, etc.), we have now moved from SoundCloud to BuzzSprout. Subscribe here!