Saturday, April 4, 2009

of all the weird things

Yesterday I had my second nurse externship interview. Let's do a brief dissection of the two interviews and prospective employers, shall we?

First Hospital:

~about 15 minutes from home
~70 bed facility
~opportunities in ED, family birthing, ICU, stepdown, med/surg
~40 minute interview with 6 nurses including department directors, guy from HR, and education specialist
~asked questions about teamwork, problems/challenges and how they were handled,workload, etc. In other words they asked several regular interview questions.
~interview held in a ground floor, service hallway conference room

I walked out of the interview in good spirits, but unsure of how I actually did. I answered the questions authentically. By this I mean that I gave examples from my experiences, rather than robotic, "best" answers. I really hadn't taken the time to come up with manufactured answers, so they got me. good, bad, indifferent...

Second Hospital:

~about 15 minutes from home
~over 80 beds, Planetree Facility
~opportunities in ICU, med/surg, and a unit that is primarily telemetry (best way to describe)
~20-25 minute interview with 3 nursing directors
~they asked siilar questions
~interview held upstairs in a unit conference room

Yet, I walked away from the interview pretty unsure of the chances of me getting the position. This wasn't because of the interview itself. It's because of a request that was made by the HR person beforehand. After escorting me upstairs, she'd stepped into the conference room and then came out after briefly speaking with the directors about the previous applicant. She comes up to me, "Do me a favor. They're going to ask you a question about group projects, setting up a scenario where one of the people in the group didn't pull their weight. They are going to want to know how you would or did handle that situation. I want you to have been that person. I want you to say, 'Oh that was me. I was the slacker. I totally dropped the ball...' Only do this if you think you can. Do you think you can?"


I politely told her I didn't think I could pull it off. I wouldn't be comfortable doing that. Being the slacker in that situation is not in my nature, and if I wanted to become Julia Roberts I would have a long time ago!

In her defense...since that is in my nature-to give the benefit of the doubt...I can say this goes with this woman's personality. She seems like a very gregarious, slightly eccentric individual, who would love to play jokes on others. I can get in there with the best of them, I assure you. But during a job interview? Where you don't know any of the people sitting there and how they'll react to such a display?

uh, uh no way...not me, no can do!

One of my classmates, with whom I've become friends, was interviewing next and walked up as I was walking out. The HR person goes into the conference room in between the interviews, so while she did that I chit-chatted with my friend. Out comes the HR person and she makes the same request of my friend. My friend has a "WTF?" look on her face, but she was more willing to give it the ole college try. She said she'd do her best to do it, but didn't want to promise anything.

It had already been a troublesome morning as I'd watched the DVRed ER finale....bawling throughout (nope never got around to studying yesterday morning). After the show I intended to study for a bit, but by this time a migraine had set in. I decided to take the time to take my meds and lie down for a bit, hoping to relieve the pain from my being. The phone interupted my solace after about 20 minutes and never gave up. Between Big B and LB the phone rang about 5 times.

The boys had a half-day of school for exams yesterday, and LB had stayed after for a club activity. He was calling because he needed a ride home. By this time it was time to get ready for the interview, with about an hour to spare before I wanted to leave. I commenced to yelling at them ("them" because both Big B and LB called concerning this after I had deferred LB to his father...) over the phone. Sorry, not the most effective way to handle things, but I was in pain, the nerves were wracking up, and time was a tickin'!

And you want me to come get you???

Evidently I was his only option as Dear Ol' Dad was still up north, about an hour away. Now I had to rush through getting ready so I could go pick him up, and head to the interview. Luckily it's ok to leave a 16 year old out in the car. Can you imagine me walking into the hospital with my kid, and there stands the HR rep?

Who knows? She might have flirted with him!