Preparing to interview for a nursing job can be daunting, as it’s an important opportunity to make an excellent impression on potential employers. For this reason, we’re here to help you with some simple steps you can take to prepare for success.

Preparation for the interview can be split into two: preparing to make a winning impression, and preparing for the actual questions you will be asked. We’ve already covered how to make the best impression here, where we discussed which qualities nursing home staffing admins look for when interviewing candidates. Now, here’s a look into the top questions you will likely be asked during your interview.

Common Nursing Interview Questions to Prepare For

Practicing potential interview questions in advance can help you go in feeling confident and prepared. Review and think about how to answer these questions prior to the interview. Come up with a handful of situations which could be used to answer variations of these questions honestly.

Here are a few of the most common questions you can expect to be asked.

1. Tell me about yourself.

Sometimes, interviewees stumble over this question because it’s so open-ended. To that end, it’s important to have a succinct answer prepared in advance. Discuss general information about your work experience and education, including job qualifications that show why you’d be a good fit. Remember to be yourself and draw from your own life experiences when answering this and other questions.

2. What draws you to the field of nursing?

This question may vary depending on whether this is your first position out of nursing school or if you’ve been in the field for several years. In either case, be genuine and discuss the experiences that shaped your desire to become a nurse.

3. Describe a time you overcame a conflict at work.

Nurses are bound to encounter challenges on the job, so being able to overcome them successfully is an important quality in a candidate. To answer this question, use an example that shows how you overcame a tough scenario and came to a resolution that worked for everyone. If you’ve already been in a nursing job, your example should come from a nursing situation, while first-time nurses can draw from other life situations.

4. Have you ever experienced an instance when a patient or family member was dissatisfied with your care? How did you address the issue?

It’s not possible to please every patient all the time, but the interviewer wants to know that in general, you’ll provide quality care to the patients in their facility. You might therefore describe a scenario in which you worked with a patient who had very particular preferences and used that experience to learn how to accommodate each patient’s unique needs. As always, be honest in your answer and describe a firsthand experience so that you can answer any follow-up questions genuinely.

5. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Try to discuss strengths you possess that the employer would look for in a good candidate, such as patience or the ability to work well under pressure. Of course, only talk about qualities that truly apply to you.

For weaknesses, be honest, but illustrate an example that shows how you’re improving. For instance, you might say that you try to accomplish everything on your own because you’re so passionate about your work, but you’re learning how to ask for help when needed.

6. Why do you want to work at this facility?

Having some background knowledge on the facility is helpful for answering this question, so do your research by looking the company up ahead of time. Try to align your response with the company’s goals or mission.

7. Where do you see yourself in five years?

Even if you don’t know the exact answer, try to illustrate the fact that you hope to be in a role that allows you to provide quality care for patients in some way or another. Additionally, if you’re looking for career growth, such as going from a CNA to an RN, be sure to mention this as employers like to see candidates’ interest in furthering their careers in the facility.

As with any important endeavor, preparation for your nursing interview is the key to success. By reviewing these questions and practicing your responses, you can set yourself up for a great interview experience.

We at Mutual Nursing find great nursing jobs for you based on the exact position and shift you’re seeking. After we find a match, all you have to do is make a great impression on the employer by thoroughly preparing for your interview to reach the next step in a fulfilling and rewarding nursing career.