Getting Your Desired Position 101 - page 2

by BostonTerrierLoverRN | 18,743 Views | 46 Comments

Since the economy went downhill and facilities started hiring seasoned nurses returning from retirement, and housewife nurses that had a husband layed off, etc. the fight for your desired position has intensified. You have to be... Read More


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    Boston,
    Wow! You put a lot of work into this and it's awesome...and to think I was able to land my new job without all this info, so YAY ME!!!lol. Tell me what you think about humor in an interview. The nurse manager I interviewed with had a bubbly personality and we seemed to hit it off immediately. She asked me, where do you see yourself in 3 years. Before I knew it I answered "here", and she laughed so hard. It was still professional, wasn't like night at the improv. Just not so stiff and formal. I took my cues from her.

    She also asked me a question, that through all my prepping for the interview I hadn't expected. She asked "what do you think the patients expect out of you?" I could've rattled off something, but I wanted to give a powerful answer (like you said sell myself), so I took a moment but I told her "you kind of stumped me." I recovered and came back strong with a response.

    I did most of the things you wrote about here, would've loved this about a month ago. It was the most honest and effortless interview I've ever had and I hope it's the beginning of an amazing and long career at this hospital.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.
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    Moved to our career section, Nursing Job Search Assistance
  3. 1
    Quote from proud nurse
    Boston,
    Wow! You put a lot of work into this and it's awesome...and to think I was able to land my new job without all this info, so YAY ME!!!lol. Tell me what you think about humor in an interview. The nurse manager I interviewed with had a bubbly personality and we seemed to hit it off immediately. She asked me, where do you see yourself in 3 years. Before I knew it I answered "here", and she laughed so hard. It was still professional, wasn't like night at the improv. Just not so stiff and formal. I took my cues from her.

    She also asked me a question, that through all my prepping for the interview I hadn't expected. She asked "what do you think the patients expect out of you?" I could've rattled off something, but I wanted to give a powerful answer (like you said sell myself), so I took a moment but I told her "you kind of stumped me." I recovered and came back strong with a response.

    I did most of the things you wrote about here, would've loved this about a month ago. It was the most honest and effortless interview I've ever had and I hope it's the beginning of an amazing and long career at this hospital.
    Congratulations First!! Proud Nurse!!!

    Yes, I would always say a humorous note (Professional and Timely), is always important. It can also show that you are a great improvisor, and can break the ice of awkward situations. It is more a talent, and I don't count off for interviewees who don't know how to inject humor appropriately- and stay very tightly professional. Either way- I am soooo glad you got through this process with ease and confidence. Great Job.
    Student_FNP_Of_UM likes this.
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    The main thing is some of the larger medical centers use a "scoring system" during your interview. I use the applicants Resume and Cover Letter as well to check off the most "Care Points" I can. Some go strictly by the interview, and the questions they ask may be your only chance to score high. These are the points I super-imposed on the "Hit These Points." There are different sheets and different questions, Here are some of them:

    What do you think you personally can bring to our facility?

    Can you describe an effective manager or boss you have had?

    What do want in a Nurse Manager's Character?

    What are some aspects of Safe Care?

    How can you deliver Cost Effective Care? How can you help us with cost control?

    How do you feel about following rules you don't particularly agree with?

    Do you understand what "Chain-of-Command" means?

    What is one time during school or a previous job you have dealt with a difficult situation? How did you solve the problem?

    How flexible are you with sudden schedule changes? ....With sudden assignment changes?

    Do you think documentation is important? Are you comfortable with Computer Charting?

    Could you tell me about a time when team work was essential to complete a task? What part did you play?

    What do you know about our facility? What have you heard about our facility? What do you think about our facility?

    Give me an example of a time you delegated a task during school, and how it went?

    Are you comfortable with delegation of tasks? What do you think are some important issues surrounding delegation of tasks?

    Catch 22 Questions:

    When is a time you had to break policy or procedure to reach a positive outcome?

    What would you do if you disagreed with a Physician's Order, and he wouldn't take your advice? What if it was Unsafe?

    What would you do if you caught a colleagues Medication Error? What if it was yours, but didn't cause any adverse reaction to the patient?

    What would you do if you walked in on a patient with a tray who began coughing loudly?

    What would you do if you realized the next day, with the same patient, you forgot to chart an important treatment that was omited by accident?

    What would you do if you caught a colleague sleeping in a room off the clock?

    Always be ready to say, I would hate to have to, but I would have to abide by the policies and procedures of your facility, and begin the chain-of-command to address the issue. (regardless of how you would solve the problem in reality).

    They might give you examples of scenarios, and ask you to place them in order by priority, a list of tasks- and ask which tasks can be delegated to other staff members, an order that has something "unsafe," or "missing," or might be correct. They may give you a dosage calculation, or maybe even a trick question- called "catch 22 questions" just to see how you can handle the pressure and difficulty (I love doing this!!! It reallly shows thinking process, and many that miss it- catch it, and correctly call the question!!(just as good).

    I have even heard of a hiring Nurse Manager that would leave the room, call her phone, and see if the applicant would answer it: either way she would give them a hard time(just for a minute to see how they handled the pressure Then explained what she was doing. I know that's CRAZY- just be ready for ANYTHING

    VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION YOU WILL HEAR!!!!(Prepare for it)

    Can you tell me about yourself? This can come in the form(s) of:

    "Tell me a little about you." "How would you describe (your name) to me." "How do you think a colleage would describe you. "

    Do Not Hesitate. Use filler words if you need to gather your thoughts ("Well, Let me see...", but an example: (Ex "I am a new RN who is very eager to learn, interested in (Med Surg/Tele/Unit/ER/Etc.) at you facility which I think I can grow into a competent, long term, hopefully asset-employee."

    Just keep it short(not asking for a biography here), keep it focused on your objective, and around 1-3 sentences.

    Well there's some more tips for the Interview Phase. Just as I said, I want you as prepared as possible

    Boston
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    Boston, thanks for a very thorough report on the art of job hunting. Your experience shows and is just what is needed for so many grads today. I think you covered all the necessary points. Question: would you find it objectionable for a new grad to 'stop by' a Nurse manager's office and ask for 30 seconds to introduce oneself? Something like, "Hello my name is Stcroix, can I have 30 second of your time? I just wanted to say hello as I was going to be applying for a position on your floor. I just wanted to put a face to an impersonal application". It worked for me, but maybe I was lucky, as the Manager spoke to me for a while.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.
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    Yes, I personally thank students going out of their way to know the Unit Managers of their clinical rotations sure doesn't hurt either. It sure gives you a network as well as they are constantly in contact with other managers open to hiring New Grads.

    On approaching Nurse Managers for the purpose of getting hired, some agree- some disagree. I will say this. This young lady came by my ED on day when we were totally snowed under. I had zip time to give her, and she was very appropriate about it.

    She simply smiled, introduced herself confidently, shook my hand, and gave me a resume. She had time to squeeze out two sentences. " I am working Med Surg right now on (blah blah floor), but I would love to have a shot in the ED. I would even volunteer my skills sometime if you need an extra hand." (I needed 6 extra hands then), but the fact was I had no openings.

    Just 4 days later, I had a RN come into my office who's husband got activated to Iraq- and she wanted to go to another state and live on a base. I hated to lose her,.....

    But guess who the FIRST person who came to my mind was. I was forced by policy to post the position, but I had her Resume in my desk, looked online- sure enough, Application, Cover Letter, and Resume. She has been with us 4 years now, and when I leave for my 6 months off for Foreign Missions- She is the ED's Coordinator.

    I have also done the same thing, and got hired on the spot. The Nurse Manager simply called down to Human Resources and said: I am sending an Applicant down there for position#(whatever)...Several times actually.

    My thoughts on doing it do have some limits. Be prepared to go either from 9am-11am (before lunch while we're still fresh without 100 things juggling in our heads. Have a printed Resume to hand over after a brief Introduction. Thank them profusely for their valuable time (even if you didn't get much, -or- even if you felt blown off), I blew that girl off that day, but she took it gracefully, and now I trust her with my Unit's future. Impressions Matter. Being in person does put you ahead of the curve, IF you make a great impression.

    Just remember: Be sensitive of WHEN you go, HOW you act, (Humble, Don't want to take up too much time- "I know your very busy; I just wanted to give you my Resume and Introduce Myself."), How you handle being blown off (Gracefully, Well I still appreciate your time; I'm sorry I came in at a busy time, but I really appreciate your time and consideration).

    I know this contraversial. It is more of a gamble, but a gamble that has ALWAYs paid off for me. It's all in how gracefully you can pull it off, and expect them to be busy, rushed, and sidetracked. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Just remember to take your Resume ALWAYS. Business cards are becoming very popular as well, but even if you do that, take a Resume too.

    BOSTON
    Last edit by BostonTerrierLoverRN on Jan 11, '13
    Student_FNP_Of_UM and Stcroix like this.
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    Those are great tips but the fact still remains that, in many locales, the local hospital is going to be in the market to hire (for example) 5 new graduate nurses and 100 recent graduates from the local universities or CC's apply.... what about the unlucky ones? What is the next best thing for them to do? Yes there are the LTC's but arguably those are not the best places to start out in and so many other jobs are not going to hire these new nurses UNTIL they get their one year acute care experience. It seems that if you go to work in a LTC that then you are even more undesireable to hospital managers than those right out of school. For many relocating is not an option either and it sounds like this "new grad" problem is happening all over the U.S. Seems like something should be done about this on a governmental level and I say this because there is a lot of evidence that the nursing workforce is growing older. All those 'semi-retired' nurses coming back taking the traditionally new grad positions can't work forever. I suspect they will all again retire at once and there will be the "shortage" again and a lot of nurses but not the proper experience - if any at all.
    Last edit by hope3456 on Jan 11, '13 : Reason: additional thought
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.
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    Yes, there is no doubt the market is depressing in some areas for New Grads. Some Areas it's much higher than your example. I recently posted an RN position, and got 103 online applications, and 211 from out-of-state. Before I could hire for the position, the hospital closed the opening all together- and told me I could hire another ER Tech. After 1 desperate week of advocation for my ED, the position was reopened without my knowledge, and I had 250 emails in one day (my max space), complaining that the position's inbox was full of Applications, and after all their work- they couldn't submit their resumes.

    It is heart breaking, it is devastating. So, the best "I" can do is to make sure the New Grads know how to prepare the best possible Applicant Packet, and prepare for the interview. I hope it helps, but I know there is no "magic bullet." I have worked jobs I'd rather kept my mother-in-law from experiencing

    I have worked as a Wastewater Technician once waiting on my hometown to get a position opening (or a local hospital) making $9.55 after coming home from the Dallas/Fort Worth Area making $40/hr. I feel your pain. However, back then I didn't know the best ways to fully prepare for the Market- now I freely pass these tips and tricks on hoping they help others if applied with tact.

    Your only new until your first position. Then you begin the road we all want to be on- to your "ideal" and "desired" position.

    I would personally rather the Government stay out of it, I can't remember the last time they really helped anything private(just an opinion). The Post Office, Medicare, (my State's Medicaid goes broke regularly), and Congress aren't running to "swift" lately, and I don't want healthcare looking like that.

    Don't Give Up, even if you have to take a non-nursing job right now- "It is what it is." If anyone here could change it- I know they would. But the best we can do is increase your chances of hooking that position that will get you by- until you get the one you WANT

    Good Luck in The Rat Race!!

    BOSTON
    Student_FNP_Of_UM and joanna73 like this.
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    Wow, wonderful work! Thanks for tips... How thoughtful of you!

    I am going to save this for my future interviews!

    Blessings~
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.
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    Very informative article and tips. With all the resources available, there is no reason why any candidate should not be successful in landing a position.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.


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