Speaking “to” each other, not “at” each other
As long as I can remember, the picture I see during the interview process has been “Job candidate sitting in a chair across from the interviewer waiting to be grilled”.
While gathering information about a prospective hire is important, why is it that we view this as a time for the employer to ask assertive questions and evaluating the employee based on receiving the answers they are hoping to hear?
It is equally valuable to the job seeker to have the opportunity to ask questions too, and yet it is so rarely done. Actually, some of the best interviews are a balance of questions and answers and questions and answers. It’s more important to be “interested” than simply “interesting” for both the interviewer and the interviewee.
A recent post that I read in a facebook group I participate in brought this subject back to light for me. With this, I felt I would go into more detail as to why this rapport is so important to a well-structured interview format.
First, it is always important that the job seekers come to this meeting prepared regarding the practice dynamics, whatever history and background can be located via internet searches, etc. I realize that many job seekers do this. But just gathering this information for their own benefit is one thing, as they should let the doctor/interviewer know that not only did they take the time to do the research, but are as inquisitive about him/her and their backgrounds, goals and interests as the interviewer is of the interviewee.
It is human nature to focus on ourselves. We love when people refer to us by name. We light up when they ask questions, show their interest in us, and we really do appreciate those that seem to legitimately care about us and our well-being. Some of us require more of this attention than others, but we would all agree that it’s important to all of us to varying degrees.
Additionally, it is important to consider what the questions are that are posed to the doctor/interviewer. There are some questions that are out of line and should never be asked, while utilizing information you glean via your internet searches are fair game.
“Doctor, I see you graduated from NYU Dental School.” “Did you like the program?”
“I notice that you offer treatment for Sleep Apnea.” “I am so interested in learning more about that.” “Do you find that your CT Scanner has helped you to identify issues that you might have otherwise missed?” “What were they?”
My clients are always impressed when they interview job candidates that appear to be very interested in their practice culture as it reveals some excellent qualities in the person they are sitting across from.
Keep in mind that as job seekers, you will not have a way to anticipate the questions you will be asked, yet you can still prepare from your end with sensible, inquisitive questions that are bound to get you noticed.