How to NOT interview for your RN/LPN job!


You are reading page 2 of How to NOT interview for your RN/LPN job!


360 Posts

he/she is "looking down" on people because she is trying to promote professionalism???

and it is spelled ADVICE !

Long Term Care Columnist / Guide

VivaLasViejas, ASN, RN

142 Articles; 9,981 Posts

Specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych. Has 26 years experience.

It may not be 'fair', but as a manager I tend to regard interviewees with long fake fingernails, multiple piercings, tight jeans, and too much perfume as not serious about working in health care. I also don't want to hear their cell phone going off every 2 minutes during the interview with Nikki Minaj signaling a new text message......smacking gum......tongue rings clicking against teeth....or questions like "can I have July off for a friend's wedding?" :rolleyes:

I agree with 99% of what you said, I just disagree about the makeup part. Why on earth is that a requirement?

i'm no expert on interview technique (i interview terribly due to nerves, and am always surprised when i get a job!) but i'm guessing what the OP means isn't so much 'be sure to wear make-up' as 'take a bit of pride in your appearance'.

i don't really wear make-up, i can't wear it at work because i work in theatres and it just rubs off on my mask and then i look half-done and silly, and so generally forget to wear it in real life, but there is no way i would turn up to an interview looking like i haven't glanced in a mirror on my way past it!

now, to the OP (and other interviewers), you touched on something dear to my heart, and my face. my nose stud.

before having it done, i checked my work's uniform policy, and made sure to use a discreet little stud. nobody mentioned it once it was done, and i have had no indication from anybody in management that it is a problem.

say you were interviewing for another job, how would you feel about me just asking in the interview if it is a problem? or would you just see it and think 'strike 1'?


44 Posts

I thought the list was hysterical, and read similar things a decade ago. Some people are either not experienced enough in a work environment, or are not smart enough, to understand these things and have to be told. Usually when you have to be told even if you follow the directions you probably still don't understand why, or you would have already been doing them. Whats funny is I am a pro tattoo, piercing, cleavage, sexy, skin and cleavage kind of girl, but would NEVER show up for a work or parent related function in such a way. I even grew my hair out from its punk cut and went from platinum and blue to brunette just for nursing school.

Specializes in Trauma, ER, ICU, CCU, PACU, GI, Cardiology, OR. Has 55 years experience.

I still can't get over the fact that applicants come in for an interview in their .... "PAJAMAS" .... Seriously? Are You Kidding Me?:uhoh21:


141 Posts

Specializes in L&D,surgery,med/surg,ER,alzheimers. Has 8 years experience.

good advice

Specializes in Emergency, Trauma, Critical Care. Has 14 years experience.
I have to politely disagree with "no gum chewing." My mouth gets really dry, especially when I am nervous. I've gotten called on it but I have to stand by it.

My mouth gets dry too from nerves before an interview, but I hide a bottle of water in my bag and take sips discreetly while waiting to interview. I don't chew gum, and think that would show a lack of professionalism. Doing it when your already at work, ok I get it, but during an interview???


162 Posts

I cover my tattoos and boobs. With pajamas and fuzzy slippers. Jk, that would be to much effort. I do have to say that as we age tattoos and piercings will be less of a deterrent. Look at the amount of younger adults with gauged (stretched) earlobes. I would rather they wear the jewelry. The holes gross me out. My tattoo goes below my elbow so you can see it when I push up my sleeves. Most pts are curious about rather than put off by it. It's very colorful. I do cover it for interviews. Which sucks in Texas summer weather. As far as other facial piercings there are plastic spacers that you can't see or looks like a little pimple. I think having a nurse wear that should be acceptable. Hope I didn't derail this. Your advice is sound.

Ruby Vee, BSN

67 Articles; 14,022 Posts

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

[color=#b22222]a couple of additions:

don't bring your pets (gal came with an itty bitty dog in her purse) or children. seriously.

don't chew gum . . . no matter how dry your mouth gets, chewing gum during an interview is just not professional.

please don't start off the interview with a litany of things you won't do . . . such as work nights, touch poop or look at old people.

BostonTerrierLover, BSN, RN

2 Articles; 908 Posts

Specializes in Adult/Ped Emergency and Trauma. Has 16 years experience.


As an ER Coordinator, I have seen a few things off in interviews, but DEAR GOD, who hurt you so?

It almost sounds like a vent!

I always just feel sorry for the single mom in jeans who would be wearing dress pants if she could have afforded them, if I had put up a "red flag" I would have turned down one heck of a ER Tech, who is now a ER RN, One of "OUR," not "My" best on staff.

These judgemental posts about how I am sooooooo much better than you because I follow the book to a "T," and "conform to the upper-crust of this Profession" sound so shallow and "God-complex" like.

Some of the greatest minds out there have hair just like Einstien, or decided to get a tattoo, and I cannot begin to imagine how you differentiate on your patient care according to how they are dressed-or look.

I think you missed your calling for cosmotologist, or a prissy hair dresser!

Otherwise, I hope you work in a private, small, uptown hospital where you won't be ashamed by Wrangler wearing blue collar workers, but doubt that since you had to post a vent about hair washing, denim, and piercings!

Old School is Okay, but Compassion, Understanding, and Empathy are still character traits that I would rather see than starch constipated china doll nurses!




44 Posts

What does understanding the connection between professionalism and appearance have to do with patient care or compassion, empathy, or understanding? A patient is not showing me through words, actions, and yes, appearance, how they are the best qualified for a job. The two are totally unrelated. I know in my heart that these things do not matter in relation to a persons worth or value as a whole, but in the capacity of employee, co worker, or nurse who is taking care of ill people, I want someone who can understand the connection. If a person comes in with pink hair and ripped jeans, I would be concerend that they either weren't very mature or that they would not be a responsible addition to the workplace. NOT because she has pink hair and ripped jeans, but because she chose to wear them to an interview. That would make me think either she didn't really want the job or that she didn't think about the way that could be percieved. It is all well and good to say you shouldn't be judged by such things but THE REALITY IS that we are. So knowing that, if you choose to dress in such a way for a job interview, what does that say about your judgement and decision making skills? Also, no one ever said the clothes had to be expensive, just appropriate. Years ago my ex had his first interview at Dell and we were like twenty years old. He had no nice clothes and we were very poor with two kids. He bought an ill fitting suit at goodwill, and it looked a bit stupid to be honest, it was obvious looking back that he was poor, but he still got the job and there is no way in hell he would have been hired looking like he had just rolled out of bed after nightclubbing the eve before. The bad suit did not get him the job, but a sloppy presentation that did not show he took the interview seriously very well might have cost it.