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How Is Medical Job Interview Preparation Like Training For A Grand Final?

Medical Job Interview Preparation

It’s grand final season here in Australia, and whichever code you follow, you can be sure that every player on every team has trained long and hard for their place in the game.

Could imagine you a player just rocking up to a grand final game, without a single minute of preparation? I mean no practice, no coaching, no feedback.

It’s inconceivable that you’d turn up for one of the biggest moments in your life with no preparation, right?

It is not so far-fetched.

Every day, people arrive at medical job interviews without investing the time and effort in preparing for the event, even though that interview may determine a large part of the course of their life.

The fact is, job interviews are a skill, and like on the sporting field, there is usually only one winner, or one group of winners. You want to be on the winning side.

So, it stands to reason that it is in your best interests to train for your next big interview, and by looking at the world of sports coaching, there are some fantastic techniques you can use.


  • Know the rules

Before you step into the interview, you need to find out the rules of the game. Ask about the format of the interview, who is on the panel, and even ask around to see what possible interview questions might be. Gaining intelligence on the process is vital.


  • Find a training partner

Whether it’s someone going for a similar position to you, a mentor, or even a friend or family member, it’s great to have a training partner. Run through interview questions just to get a feel for the process. Take some time to provide honest, critical feedback to each other on your answers, body language, communication style, eye contact, and any other observations.


  • Instant Replay

Have you ever videoed yourself performing a skill-based task? It’s usually pretty confronting to watch, right?

Since the smartphone revolution, most everyone has easy access to a video camera. When you’re practicing with your training partner, position your phone so it captures both of you, and record the interview. Play it back, and try to observe and improve upon each interview. It doesn’t hurt to repeat the same questions, so you can see a comparison from start to finish. The added benefit is that it often adds an element of stress, which provides a good simulation for the real thing.


  • Work on your weaknesses


If a tennis player has a bad backhand, that’s what they’re going to be working on until it is right. Players who neglect their weaknesses will lose because of these problems.

Perhaps you need some revision on certain clinical topics, or you should work on brevity in your answers, or maintaining eye contact, or something else. It’s these things that you need to identify and address in your training.


  • Find a mentor or a coach

Of course, it helps to have someone who knows a lot about the game to help you. By identifying a person who can give you an objective (and sometimes uncomfortable) level of advice, you add a whole other level to your training.


  • Post game analysis

After an interview, it is important to think back to the blur that was the interview and do some self analysis.

If you got the job, that’s great. If you didn’t, you may wish to ask the lead panel member for some feedback. Make sure you approach them in a non-confrontational way, and ask if you can make a time to talk with them on the phone, or even meet over a coffee. Explain that you’re working to build on your interview skills, and even a little feedback would be incredibly helpful. Make sure you implement that feedback next time.

So, before you have your next interview, channel your inner Matt Priddis, Billy Slater, or Israel Folau – train hard, be ready, and go in with your A-Game.

If you’re looking for more help with interviews, Beat Medical offers a free 30 minute coaching session, and for current candidates, we offer a complete, ongoing interview coaching program. Send us an email now, or call us on 1800 633 505 to get started before your next medical job interview.


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