Got an interview. What questions should I expect to ask and be asked?

Nurses New Nurse


Hello, I have several questions for you if you have been interviewed before or have held interviews:

This will be my first nursing interview (actually my first interview in general ^_^) and it's for a new grad training program at a children's hospital next Tuesday. So I have about a week to prepare for it. As a part of the application process, I answered a questionnaire that included questions regarding my interests, why I wanted to work at this hospital, why I would be an asset, and a difficult situation I had once and how I dealt with it, and a few others.

From your experience, will the manager have already read all of this or will it be a tool for them to use to guide the interview (meaning I already know my answers)? The manager said "we look forward to meeting you" so I am assuming there will be more than one interviewer. I am wondering what kind of questions they might ask me, and if it IS the same ones, is it okay for me to answer the way I did on paper? And with group interviews, what kind of sceanarios would they throw at me if they do (and I'm assuming they will since they've already gotten me to answer other stuff in their questionnaire...)

Also, people say that I should know about the hospital but what kind of information exactly should I bring up if asked (or however the topic comes up - and should I be the one to bring it up)?

A tricky one is when they ask me "where do you see yourself in 3-5 (or 5-10) years?" My professor said it is okay to say that you are interested in continuing education and eventually going for a role such as NP or CNS as long as you make it clear that that is an idea for the Future, after working a while in this hospital, etc. Because nobody is going to want to hire somene who is already planning on leaving in two years. I mean, do people ever just say that in 2-5 years they hope to be working on the unit they're applying for right now? How did you answer this question?

Lastly, what kinds of questions should I be prepared to ask them?

Thanks so much!!!


11 Posts

Specializes in med-surg/pedi, tele, er, rehab.

They will ask what hours you want to work, what your best and worst characteristics are if you are willing to work weekends and nights and if you are a team player. They will want to know what you expect from the nurses you will work with. Also tell them whatever you want to do in 5 years. I told everyone I wanted to be in Africa in a medical missionary trip, and all three hospitals that week wanted to hire me. One interviewer did tell me that it was a strange response and most ppl said a charge nurse on the floor hiring, but I don't want that. I found that most hospitals want a responsible, dependable, and loyal employee that won't run as soon as they have the 2 yrs exp that every other hospital prefers before hiring.

Specializes in Trauma ICU, Peds ICU.

You're going to get a question you aren't prepared for. The sooner you accept that the sooner you can prepare yourself for it mentally. When it happens, just be honest. It's easier than trying to come up with something you think they want to hear, and most will be able to tell if you aren't being genuine anyways.

I remember getting thrown off by two questions I wasn't expecting. The first was a really vague question about how I would be a leader as an RN. The second was, "What makes you feel successful?"

Questions I recently received on an interview:

Tell me about a time when you disagreed with a coworker or boss

Can you describe a situation where you saved money or resources for your unit, department, or organization

Describe a time when you were not able to achieve something or perform something correctly and what you did about it

Hope those help!

And yes, you'll receive a question that will throw you for a loop. But take the time to think about it; many scenarios that describe your behaviors and experiences at work can apply to a multitude of different questions.


15 Posts

hi jo716, i know this is off topic, but i was wondering if you were having an interview for september's program at children's?



105 Posts

I just got done interviewing yesterday. I was asked a lot of questions the required me to recall events from clinical days. Lots of "tell me about a time when....". Things like when I worked as a team. How I handled working with someone who had a different opinion than me. How I handled a patient who I felt needed more care/attention than he/she was receiving....etc. Hope that helps!

One question that I had on an interview was "What's your philosophy of life?"(I was so thrown off, that I don't even remember my answer).


33 Posts

Wow thanks for all the great feedback! Is it also typical to receive a scenario where you are asked to talk about your first actions/responses?

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