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10 Worst Answers to Healthcare Interview Questions

Discussion in 'Nursing' started by Egyptian Doctor, Dec 5, 2013.

  1. Egyptian Doctor

    Egyptian Doctor Moderator Verified Doctor

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    What is Your Desired Salary?

    Many job-seekers don’t expect to hear this question until the second interview or they have a job offer in hand, but many employers having started to ask it as a way to week out potential employees who have unrealistic expectations. The key here is to do your research. Know what others in the field, with similar education and experience, are making. Know what you have to make to survive, but wait to haggle until you have an actual offer.

    Bad Answer: I want to make as much as possible. An impressive salary is the reason you get into health care, right? I won’t settle for less than twice as much as I make now. And trust me, I’m worth it.

    Better Answer: I would like to make roughly $50,000 annually, which is slightly more than I currently make. But, of course, the more the better!

    Best Answer: I would like to make $45,000 – $50,000 annually. I believe that my five years of experience in the field plus the additional health care certifications I earned last year add to my value as an employee. However, I got into health care to make a difference, and salary is secondary to working at a job I love.

    What is Your Greatest Weakness?

    This is a classic trick job interview question. Do you try to turn a weakness into a strength? Do you claim to have no weaknesses? The key here is to be honest, but not too honest. Use specific examples to show how you have overcome a weakness during a challenging time to show that while you may not be perfect, you have the skills to get the job done.

    Bad Answer: I really can’t think of any…

    Better Answer: I can be stubborn, but that just means I want to get things done and get them done right!

    Best Answer: During my first month at my current job, I had a tendency to be relatively shy and not speak up for myself. One day, I was blamed for losing a patient’s chart. Instead of taking the blame, I spoke to the DON and showed her how I was at work that day and the patient was discharged before I was on call. Even though I was nervous, I knew I was not to blame and wanted the truth to be known. Since then, I have been much better about speaking my mind.

    Describe a Time You Worked with Someone You Did Not Get Along With

    Interviewers want to hear specific examples, so they will often ask for them. Be prepared with concrete illustrations that paint you in the best light possible. Don’t make something up, as it is possible your potential employer will verify your story with your past employer.

    Bad Answer: Oh, I always get along with everyone! I’ve never met a person I didn’t like.

    Better Answer: I once worked with a doctor who developed very different treatments plans that I would. We often argued about what what best for a patient, and I usually let her have her way because it’s easier to concede than to fight.

    Best Answer: I used to lock heads with a fellow nurse in the INCU ward. We disagreed over many things – from the care of patients to who got what shifts to how to speak with a child’s family. Our personalities did not mesh. After three months of arguing, I pulled her aside and asked her to lunch. At lunch, we talked about our differences and why we did not get along. It turns out, it was all about communication. We communicated differently and once we knew that, we began to work well together. I believe that talking a problem through with someone will help solve the issue.

    Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?

    Many job-seekers dread this important question. You want to show your interest in a new job, but you don’t want to bad-mouth your current (or former) employer. What’s a job-seeker to do?! Be very careful when answering this question as your interviewer will want to hear that you are interested in a new job for the long run.

    Bad Answer: I didn’t get along with my boss or co-workers or the patients.

    Better Answer: I started to feel restless and bored at work. I felt ready for a change of pace and a new environment.

    Best Answer: I had progressed through the ranks at my current job and I’m looking for a new challenge. While I enjoyed my old job, I’ve been there for seven years and was ready to move on.

    Why Should We Hire You?

    This question seems simple enough and you would think that an interviewer could answer it simply by looking at your resume and reading your cover letter. However, an interviewer wants to hear it from you. Why do you stand out from everyone else?

    Bad Answer: I’m more qualified than the other candidates and I have what it takes to be an asset to this hospital.

    Better Answer: I have eight years of experience in radiologic technology performing a number of procedures. I also love my job and enjoy working with patients. I always have great relationships with my colleagues.

    Best Answer: I have an advanced degree in health administration as well as five years of experience has the head of the nursing department at John Smith Hospital. I am comfortable as a leader and follower and have served in both positions. In my last job, I developed a patient advocacy program which worked to ease patients’ fears and alleviate stress during procedures. Thus far, over a dozen health care professionals have become volunteer patient advocates.

    Why Do You Want to Work Here?

    Don’t confuse this question with “Why are you leaving your current job?” They are very different questions although your answers may sound similar. Despite what you may think, this is not the time to butter-up an interviewer too much. Express interest in areas that really matter to you. If you were impressed with a hospitals research into juvenile diabetes, say so, but make sure it’s not the only thing you have to say. Do your research first so you can show your desire for the position.

    Bad Answer: I really want to work for a prestigious health system and I’ve always admired your work. Plus, I am ready to move on from my current job.

    Better Answer: I’ve always looked up to Dr. Smith for his research on breast cancer. I like the atmosphere of the hospital as well as the chances to advance my nursing career.

    Best Answer: During school, my favorite professor was also a nurse practitioner here, which is how I came to know and admire the facility. I learned of your recent philanthropic endeavors and was very impressed by your efforts to reach out to the community as a whole. As a nurse, I have a desire to care for all patients regardless of ability to pay and I admire that your clinic never refuses to serve anyone.

    What Are Your Career Goals?

    Here’s a question you need to be very prepared to answer. And your answer better be flawless. Employers want to know you’re ambitious, but not so ambitious that you’ll leave in 6 months to pursue an advanced degree in English Literature or study naturopathic medicine in the jungles of Thailand. Hiring a new employee is a big investment, and an interview wants to know they are investing their time and money wisely.

    Bad Answer: I’m biding my time now as an LPN while I save up to go back to school and become a physician assistant.

    Better Answer: In 10 years, I see myself as a nurse practitioner. I would like to attend school at night and on weekends while I work. I enjoy working in med-surg right now, but I would like to end up in pediatrics eventually.

    Best Answer: I imagine that I will continue my work as a radiologic technologist for at least five more years. I love the field of radiology and would like to move up in the field either through expanding my education or gaining on-the-job experience. I would like to challenge myself by taking a leadership role, perhaps the head of a department, one day while still maintaining a clinical role working with patients.

    When Were Your Most Satisfied in Your Job?

    Interviewers want to know what makes you tick – this includes things you like and dislike. If your favorite part of your last job was charting and you are interviewing for a job in medical records, an interviewer will be thrilled that your interests match the job description. However, if your favorite thing was charting and there is no charting involved in the job you are vying for, an interviewer may be curious as to why you are applying.

    Bad Answer: I didn’t enjoy very much of anything in my last position which is why I am looking for a new job.

    Better Answer: I really enjoyed working with patients and providing care. I especially liked working with elderly patients because they can teach you so much.

    Best Answer: When I was promoted to DON, I was particularly satisfied at work. I felt that I had worked diligently on the med-surg floor for 10 years and the promotion was well-deserved. I also enjoyed the challenge of supervising my fellow nurses, though I always tried to remain a peer rather than an authority figure.

    Do You Have Any Questions for Me?

    Interviewers want to know that you’ve done the research. Not preparing questions is a definite no-no. Think about what is important to you and ask honest questions about it. If you really want to work somewhere where your co-workers feel like family, ask how the work environment is. Interviewers are usually happy to answer questions because they want you to get as much out of the interview as they do.

    Bad Answer: Nope. You’ve answered all my questions.

    Better Answer: You’ve answered most of my questions, but I was wondering what you like most about working here.

    Best Answer: I’m really looking for a job where I feel like a part of a team. What is the work environment like? Do you spend time with your colleagues outside of work? What kind of team-building activities do you participate in?

    Describe Your Biggest Failure. What Did You Learn?

    Interviewers don’t expect you to be perfect. In fact, they want to hear about your flaws… as long as you’ve learned how to overcome them. It’s imperative that you have concrete examples in your answer and that you can show how you’ve grown because of the situation.

    Bad Answer: I once missed an important deadline a few years ago. I felt very badly and promised my boss I wouldn’t do it again. I’ve never made a mistake since then.

    Better Answer: I once made a crucial error while in a patient’s chart. Luckily, my supervising doctor caught it before anyone got hurt, but I’ve never felt like more of a failure. Since then, I have learned to check and double-check my patient’s charts and even ask a colleague if my charting makes sense and is correct.

    Best Answer: While serving as hospital administrator in my last job, I endorsed a bid to take over a neighboring hospital which was floundering. I went through every step meticulously and was sure the deal would go through. However, they other hospital pulled out at the last minute after I has virtually guaranteed my board members that the deal would be settled. For months, I was looked down upon by the board and co-workers. However, I stood by my choice even though it didn’t work out. Because I didn’t back down or shy away from blame, I became a stronger administrator.

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  2. henin

    henin Well-Known Member

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    A great interview tips
     

  3. santoshbhanuse

    santoshbhanuse Well-Known Member

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  4. abdu Raheem

    abdu Raheem Active member

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    Very nice
     

  5. Mohammedsordahi

    Mohammedsordahi Bronze Member

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