The three things employers need to know by the end of a job interview
Whether you are being hired as the newest member of the administrative staff, a highly sought-after technician, or as a senior healthcare provider, the basic structure of the job interview remains the same.
There are three basics details that your potential employer will want to find out about you – and no matter what they ask, all of the questions are designed to determine one of these things.
What employers need to know about you by the end of the interview:
Can you do the job?
On paper, you have the skills and credentials to fill the position. That’s how you landed the job interview in the first place. Still, this role may have its own particular challenges, and information on resumes can be exaggerated.
In a job interview, most employers will ask you questions about your on-the-job experience and specific situations you may have faced. They are gaining an impression of your potential performance based on your passed behaviour.
Tell me about a time you had to treat an uncooperative patient who withheld important information…
This open-ended form of question is designed to evaluate your professional experience. This is a scenario that seasoned practitioners would have faced many times. Demonstrate your diplomacy and communication skills. Explain how you ensured the best treatment for your patient, despite their resistance.
Will you love the job?
Wait. They're worried about whether or not you will like to job? Yes. Because if it seems like the role is a bad fit for your career goals, personality type, or interests, then you won't likely stay in it for very long. When employers have a position to fill, that is a problem that needs solving. If they hire someone who is a bad fit, that person isn't likely to be successful on the job, and probably won't stay very long. That puts the organization right back where they started.
So, part of the evaluation at the job interview is to determine if the role is a good match for your career goals and work style. It's better for everyone when these elements line up.
A common job interview question across sectors is, "Why did you leave your last position?"
Part of the rationale behind this query is to determine if you would likely leave the job you're interviewing for as well. For example, if you say that you left your previous role because the long hours and pressure got to be too much - you won't likely be hired for a role in a fast-paced emergency medical environment.
Talk about what you liked about the role and what you learned there - and then say why it was time to move on without complaining about the job or your former employer. Turn the conversation instead to explain why you are excited about this new opportunity as the career move that lines up with your goals and skills.
Employers want to hire someone positive and upbeat about their work.
Can we stand working with you?
Of course, once you're hired, you become a part of the hiring manager's daily life – and that of the rest of the team. Employers want to make sure that you are going to be pleasant (or at the very least tolerable) to work with and that there won't be any personality clashes that could drive other employees away.
So, you will likely be asked about your communication style and teamwork abilities to make sure that you are going to fit in with the culture of the workplace.
For example: Tell me about a time when you received some negative feedback from a supervisor. How did you deal with it?
Everyone makes mistakes. We all have room for improvement. Explain how you received some coaching about a situation you could have handled better and how this feedback has helped you improve your performance since.
A good team player is someone who can accept constructive criticism and who is willing to learn on the job and improve their work. By contrast, a poor team player is one who resents feedback and is convinced that they are always right. Nobody wants to hire that guy.
At the end of the job interview, if you've convinced your potential employer that you have the skills to do the job, you'd be excited to work hard and succeed in the role, and you would be a pleasure to work with, you've gone a long way towards securing the job offer.
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