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Follow these simple tips to ace your interview and get your US RN adventure off the ground

Top Interview Tips for Nurses

Conexus Medstaff have put together the below tips to help you communicate your confidence, enthusiasm and intelligence during your telephone interview. This is your time to shine, so make the most of it! Follow these simple tips to ace your interview and get your US RN adventure off the ground:

Failing to prepare = preparing to fail!

This old line by a famed basketball coach holds true in everyday life. If you fail to prepare for your job interview, you have effectively prepared...to fail the interview.

To avoid that fate, you need to know what to practice. Here are some things to go over as you prepare for your interview:

  • Know who you are and how you got where you are.
    • Know your resume inside out.
    • Be able to recount your big accomplishments.
    • Understand your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Know what you want to do next.
    • Think about your goals and ambitions.
  • Understand the role you are being interviewed for.
    • Be familiar with the job description so that you can align your skills and experience to the role.
  • Research and learn as much as you can about the organisation.
    • Read their own website and perform general internet searches.
    • Does it have a mission statement? What are the company values?
  • Prepare some answers to common interview questions ( we will look at this in more detail later).
  • Write down all of your ideas to the above points.
    • Use what works best for you – paragraphs in full sentences, lists of keywords, diagrams, etc.
  • Practice answering questions verbally.
  • Role play with another person playing the interviewer.
  • Practice speaking your answers out loud while alone.
  • Think about the speed of your speech and your breathing.
  • Try to limit unnecessary words or sounds such as “like” and “erm.”
  • Practice smiling in a mirror while you answer your questions verbally.
  • Remember: If you smile, it comes through in your voice and you interviewer will both see it and hear it!

Preparation on the Day!

  • Sit in a quiet room without distractions or interruptions.
  • If possible use a landline with a good connection.
  • Have a glass of water nearby in case of a dry throat.
  • Don’t forget your mirror!
  • Have a copy of your resume near you during the interview.
    • If your mind goes blank on dates then you can easily check.

The Interview Itself

Here are some things to keep in mind to make sure you come across well throughout the entirety of the interview.

  • Speak clearly and breathe calmly.
  • If you do not understand a question, kindly ask the interviewer to repeat the question.
  • Use your mirror, and smile!
  • Project confidence in your voice.
    • Speak with enthusiasm and energy to engage the interviewer.
    • Be positive and avoid negativity.
    • Answer questions succinctly and do not ramble.

As for what you talk about, here are some thoughts about the things that might come up in the course of the interview.

  • Focus fully on the question or conversation.
    • Do not begin your response until the other person has finished or you may respond inappropriately.
  • Sell yourself to the organisation.
    • Tell them why you would fit well with their values.
    • Tell them what skills and experience you have to fulfil the job description.
    • Tell them your ambitions.
  • Choose your words clearly and professionally.
    • Do not use slang words.
    • Try not to use filler words or sounds such as “like”, “erm.”
    • Short silences are not always bad – it can show you are thinking about your answer.
  • Give specific examples when asked about your experiences.
    • This helps the interviewer gain a deeper understanding of your skills and abilities.
  • When recounting experiences or accomplishments, never identify patients or family members by name or any other identifiable information.
  • Never speak badly of a former employer or former colleagues.
  • Ask the interviewer questions.
    • You are also seeing if you want the job on offer and feel it will be a good fit for you.
    • Never ask about salary or paid time off as this is something that should be discussed if you receive an offer of employment.
  • End the interview in a positive manner.
    • If you are interested in the role, reiterate your interest and tell them why you think you would fit well within the organisation.
    • Thank the interviewers for their time and interest in your application.

Good luck and we'll see you in America!

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