As with any job interview, there are some questions you can typically expect to be asked. However in a nursing interview, things tend to get a bit more personal and interesting. Interviewers like to hit you with behavioral interview questions…you know, the ones that typically start off with “Tell me about a time when…” So let’s take a look at the more commonly asked interview questions, nursing related questions, and then some of the questions you can ask your interviewers to leave a lasting and good impression (and no, I don’t mean asking them questions about their staffing ratios or patient load/capacities).
General interview questions you can expect to be asked include:
- How did you find this job listing?
- Tell me about yourself. (Take this opportunity to give them insight to your life outside of work, but keep it short and sweet)
- What do you know about our organization? (Never go into an interview without having researched the organization, their mission/values, and your specific facility)
- Why did you leave your most recent position? (Try to find a positive spin on this answer)
- Why are you the best fit for our job? (Talk yourself up! They just gave you the perfect opening to do so!)
- What is your greatest strength? Weakness? (Again try to choose something you can put a positive spin on)
- What made you want to work here?
- What assets are you able to bring to our team?
- What questions do you have for us? (See suggested responses below)
Now, here are some nursing related questions that you might be asked. There are so many possible behavioral-based interview questions that I could have included but don’t have space for, so I would definitely suggest taking more time to research those types of questions.
- What do you believe is the biggest challenge currently facing the nursing profession today?
- Tell me about a time when you saw a situation of questionable ethics occur. How did you handle it?
- Tell me about a time when you had to handle a difficult patient and/or family member.
- What is the hardest aspect of nursing?
- Tell me about a time when you had to deal with or work with a difficult coworker.
- Describe a situation you encountered where you didn’t know how to handle a healthcare related situation.
- Tell me about a time when you took on a leadership role.
- Tell me about a time when you have dealt with a dissatisfied patient or family member.
- Describe your relevant nursing experience.
Here are some examples of questions you can ask when the interviewers inquire about your questions for them:
- Do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications?
- How does this organization measure an employee’s growth and success?
- What can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with?
- What’s the culture like on this unit?
- Can I meet any of my potential team members or walk through the unit?
- Is there a new grad nurse residency program that I’ll be a part of? If so, please tell me more about that opportunity.
I know you all will rock your interviews! Just be sure to do your research about the company, sample interview questions, and have another person practice interviewing you. Be sure to check with your university or college as they may have resources or services like this in a career center.