New Grad Traumatized After First Interview - page 2

by rollieem

6,831 Visits | 33 Comments

Hello everyone! After waiting 2 1/2 months of passing my NCLEX, I finally received a phone call from a Pediatric Rehabilitation Center who is interested in interviewing me. I am ecstatic, I love working with children and I... Read More


  1. 0
    Quote from Kooky Korky
    One interviewer I had made it know that she thought I was a job-hopper. I told her I had always been the curious type and needed change, as the impetus behind my changing jobs perhaps more than she had. She was very negative and it was all a waste of time with her. I wish interviewers who don't really like what a person would bring to the interview/facility would just pass over these applicants. It would be kinder to all concerned.
    When I used to be a computer programmer I was once called a job hopper in an interview. I really didn't like having a desk job and staring at a screen all day. I was just doing what helped me stay sane at the time. I am a person that loves change, especially when you work in a very unstimulating environment such as computer programming. Changing jobs every year made my life have some excitement in it. Programming wasn't a fit for me, I need change and excitement. This is why I picked nursing, you meet different people all the time and keep learning your entire career. I like this kind of job. Of course now I have to deal with the problem of being a new grad. When I walk out of these interviews I just want to say "thank you very much for taking away minutes of my life that I will never get back." Don't invite someone in for an interview just so you can make fun of or belittle, that it just not nice. Nursing is a caring profession, you should care for all the interviewees, not just the ones that say what you want to hear.
  2. 6
    There is a difference between not being willing to hire a new grad and just being leery of it. It sounds very much to me from the OP that they would have been willing to take a chance on the right fit.

    Never tell yourself " no fair", "their loss" or other such sour grapes. Honest reflection and tweaking your approach will always and ever get you further than blind self comforting. Rejection stings but not so much that normal interview questions, concerns and behaviors should cause you to go into self protective mode. Worrying about a new grad jumping ship is a VERY VERY common concern for employers. Training a new grad is expensive. If there is no return on the investment through a couple of years of service then they actually lose money in hiring a new grad. Every new grad owes it to themselves to have a general idea on how to respond to this common concern. "I would not want to work for them anyway" would be the least useful response in helping you find a job.
    Last edit by not.done.yet on Feb 22, '13
    wooh, nursel56, BluegrassRN, and 3 others like this.
  3. 2
    I am sorry but I feel like the interviewer WAS giving you a chance to prove yourself. Do not assume she did not know you were a new grad. I am thinking with all the preparation you did for the interview you feel short of what I would have anticipated to be a questions they would ask. Why do you want to work here? Why did you not apply and if you did ..why were you not hired other places>partcularly one where you had an internship. Simple answers. I am interested in this population because.....
    THey did not have an opening....they do not hire new grads. Those questions are not attacking you at all.
    Also of course a manager wants some assurance that you are not using them as a stepping stone. I was in the same position..took a position and was asked the same things!! I was honest. Said I did not know if I would enjoy the position for sure but I would give it a year at minimum before I would transfer to another position within the facility if I did not find it a match.
    You do not know..if you are going in blindly.Networking with people that worked there would have been much better preparation than all the practicing you did.
    Last edit by funfunfun550 on Feb 22, '13 : Reason: grammar
    wooh and BluegrassRN like this.
  4. 0
    Quote from rollieem
    Yes, you are all correct. I was unable to recognize the direction of where interview was heading and I was unable to take control. This was definitely a learning experience, the nursing director's statements on new grads just threw me off and rubbed me the wrong way.
    Anticipate these type of questions, and hopefully, you won't get them. Use your experience in preceptorship to your advantage. Best of luck!
  5. 7
    First of all, 'traumatized' is a strong word to use for an interview that didn't go well.Secondly to the poster who said the DON didn't even look at her resume' before the interview.....I get at least 15-30 resumes a month. I don't have time to read them all. I rely on the scheduler to make appointments with people who might fit.We're all busy. I'm sorry your interviews didn't go as you had hoped, but all you can do is to keep trying.
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    It seems as though that is a trend. Either places won't/don't hire new grads. Or students. You have to know where you want to work, and why. I had a staff development cordinator that said "I am never hiring students again!" Hm. Well, at the facility I worked at, the door was revolving. We had new staff every 6 months.....gee.....I wonder why?!

    As another poster said......would you really want to work there? If they don't want to hire new grads, they shouldn't interview them. Not professional, IMO.
    SoldierNurse22 and netglow like this.
  7. 0
    I have had a bad interview a couple months ago. It was my first real nursing interview, and not what I expected. The last couple of interviews that I had before this were seemingly more casual (one for a PCT position, another for a nursing position at an open house- but they were pretty clear that they didn't want new RNs.) I would prepare for these interviews by going over common interview questions and to my surprise none of these questions were ever asked after rehearsing for them.

    When I went on my first "real nursing interview" all of those common questions were asked - strengths, weaknesses, tell me about yourself, etc. This interview was for the same place I went to an open house to. I was interviewed by a man - which was new to me. Most of my interviewers have been females (except one other man years ago.) He was very serious and did not have the conversational aspect that past interviewers had (which I find to put me at ease- as I am sure it does for many.) I am usually very shy to begin with, but my nerves were through the roof because of the serious demeanor of the man. I thought ym answers were good, but maybe I did not articulate them well enough. I guess it goes to show that you cannot predict who will interview you- you must prepare for the normal interview questions, even some oddball ones, even if past interviews have been more conversational. You must also learn to exude confidence when the interviewer is more serious, "intimidating", etc, less conversational than others. Perhaps you could try role playing some more with various scenarios - script it so the interviewer goes on a new grad rampage (hopefully you have some good acting buddies), have a man interview you, ask someone to make up new and unusual questions as well, have someone of a different culture interview you, go to a mock interview at your previous school, etc. Switch up the scene. That way you will become more comfortable in various situations and with various personality types.

    I am currently reading an interview book and they made mention of stress interviews. I wonder if these tactics are used purposely in your interview. My interviewer surely did use the long silences. I think that made me unsure of my answers and babbling. Perhaps you should research these types of stress scenarios and build your confidence up with dealing with them.

    Check out this website:
    http://www.quintcareers.com/situatio...nterviews.html

    The interviewer may try to stress you in one of several ways, such as asking four or five questions in a row, acting rude or sarcastic, disagreeing with you, or simply keeping you waiting for a long period.

    Last edit by Scarlettz on Feb 23, '13
  8. 0
    Bitter old bag!

    I, too, had my first job interview as a new grad with the DON of the hospital where I trained go somewhat that way. I reacted differently than you, though. I got ****** off after listening to her lay down the 'rules', before she had even offered me a job, or welcomed me onboard. After about 5 minutes of a rude tirade about how I would have to get in line behind everyone else for time off (meaning I'd be working lots of weekends, holidays and the like, etc.), she would not tolerate 'tardy' behavior, I closed up the notepad I had brought for the interview and packed away my pen. This let her know that as far as I was concerned, the interview was over, and I was not going to take any job she offered me. I took a job across town from where I lived, and told everyone at school why I did so...what a beeatch!

    Quote from rollieem
    Hello everyone!

    After waiting 2 1/2 months of passing my NCLEX, I finally received a phone call from a Pediatric Rehabilitation Center who is interested in interviewing me. I am ecstatic, I love working with children and I was looking forward to learning more about their facility as well. I scheduled my interview with the HR receptionist who sounded really sweet on the phone. I spent the next four days reviewing possible questions and even did a few mock interviews with my friends. Interview day arrived and I felt ready and confident! I showed up 25 minutes early and waited, for what seemed to be forever, in the lobby to be escorted to the room for my interview.

    I then meet with the director of nursing who is going to interview me. She sits down and looks at my resume and sees that I have done a preceptorship at a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at a local hospital nearby. She then says to me, "Oh, I see you have PICU experience, why didn't you apply to this hospital?" I responded, " I did not see any openings but I am here and interested in learning more about your facility." She then asks, "Oh, so they're not hiring or they're hiring new grads?" I then answer, "I guess it's both?" (Maybe I shouldn't have said that?) She then goes into a tangent for about five minutes on how she is not really looking to hire any new graduates and that only a few will be hired because many of her nurses in the past has used their facility as a stepping stone to get into bigger hospitals. She also emphasized that she has to be really careful of who she hires (this facility is fairly new and will have its one year anniversary of opening next month). After hearing all this, I am just sitting there SHOCKED and feeling slightly angry thinking (okay, my resume clearly says I'm a new graduate, if you aren't interesting in hiring me, why bring me here in the first place and waste my time and your time?!) The rest of the interview went downhill. I just lost my concentration. I couldn't answer her other questions to the best of my ability and even froze during some points (think deer with headlights, haha).

    As a new grad, I would like to be in a setting that is supportive and offers mentorship and guidance. I just felt like the nursing director judged me for being a new graduate who just wanted use them as a stepping stone after seeing my PICU experience. I mean ultimately I would like to work at a hospital but that doesn't mean I would leave that facility ASAP after 'gaining my year of experience.' Her attitude just set a negative atmosphere for the interview. I am also disappointed in myself for becoming rattled, not saying focused and not making myself seem like a decent candidate. The interview ended quite abruptly, I felt rushed and didn't even have much time to ask her my questions.

    Thank you so much for listening to me vent!!! Has anyone had an experience similar to mine? I am just traumatized and afraid for my next interview, this experience has definitely shaken my confidence. I guess it's tough love in the world on nursing today, huh..
  9. 3
    It sounds like the interviewer gave you some serious ammo, and you completely missed it. She was saying that they don't like to hire new grads because they use their job as a stepping stone. She expressed her concern regarding picking someone that was a good fit for their organization.

    She wasn't attacking *you*. She was telling you her concerns and her needs. You're response could have reassured her that you were not looking for your one year of experience before moving on; that you were interested in making a commitment to her organization. You could have told her that you appreciated how selective she was, as you understand that for a team to function at a top level, all members need to be committed to their coworkers, their unit, and their hospital. She wanted to hear why you wanted to work for them as opposed to where you did your preceptorship and why she should hire you as a new grad (as opposed to someone with more experience).

    It's hard not to freeze when things do go as you expect. Next time, *listen* to what the person is saying, and respond to that. Take a deep breath, don't take things personally, and really listen; then you can formulate a response that addresses what the interviewer is asking.
    kogafietsen, not.done.yet, and wooh like this.
  10. 0
    I've had many corporate jobs and with that many interviews. I quit my last corporate job in 2007 to finally fulfill my dream of nursing. I obtained my Real Estate license to supplement finances and time for nursing school. Real Estate crashed so I took a two-week course at a local Nursing Home to obtain my CNA license and work my way up. One of the CNAs at this facility was so hateful and nasty-mean that I didn't want to interview there. This CNA had been there for decades and had the ear of the DON so it was pointless (I was literally asked if I was just collecting state licenses). I moved on to their sister facility, but I believe my name had been passed along as a "do not hire" because I couldn't get anyone on the phone, only letters stating they were persuing other candidates. Well, they missed their opportunity for a ROCKING nurse! Since then I've obtained my LPN license and am 7 weeks from graduation for RN. I fully indend to submit my resume to each of these facilities and I fully intend to be interviewed and I fully intend to reverse the negative interaction and give them a very diplomatic but no-holds-barred recitation of the past 6 years as well as a thought on how they treated me because of some bitter employee that committed "lateral violence". I've had many amazing opportunites in nursing as an LPN, I made great money without them (better money actually) as a CNA and I have a packed resume with letters of recommendation from employers and patients & families to wave in their face. I am so much stronger now and consider it a blessing they didn't hire me I'd just be old and bitter by now.


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