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Nurses: How Has Your Past Experience Prepared You for This Opportunity?

Qualities to Look for in Top Administrative Talent

As you complete your resume and apply for positions in the healthcare field, you want your employers to know what you can handle. And to do this, you’ll have to show them what you’ve already handled in the past, possibly hundreds of times. You’ll have to explain that you’ve been immersed in this profession for a while, and you’ve seen and done some things that have informed who you are as a person, a
healthcare provider, an employee, and a leader.

But just listing your past job titles won’t get you very far. And if you’re asked to describe your experience in an interview, you’ll want to add dimension to your story and details that don’t fit into a one-page document. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you explain how your professional experiences have shaped your career.

Provide color.

Yes, you have experience with radiology scanning, or intubating, or crash support. But instead of just saying this, talk about when you first acquired these skills and what your application of said skills has taught you over time. Did you fail with any of these tasks early on? Feel free to tell the story, and then describe how you eventually got your issues sorted out.

Brag while you explain.

The process is simple: When you’re asked to quantify or describe your experience, do so. But find a way to answer the question (explain) while making it clear that you have some exceptional qualities that set you apart from the rest of the candidate pool (brag). For example, if you learned something the hard way, great. But if you learned it the hard way in an unusually short period of time, even better.

Add numbers whenever you can.

Any time you have a chance to add a number to any detail of your profile—in your resume or in your interview—do so. How many patients do you handle at once, on average? How many people were involved in the largest or most complicated team you’ve ever lead? How many years of experience have you in this skill area or that one?

Let your wisdom speak for itself.

Put yourself in the shoes of your employer. As you glance over this candidate (or his or her resume), ask yourself a few questions: Would you trust this person to take care of the patients in your clinic? Would you trust this person with your own health or that of a family member? If you, as a candidate, really know your way around the OR, the ER, the clinic or the facility, this quality will reveal itself in your calm confidence and your facility with the terms and realities of your field. Let this happen! Don’t overthink your answers. Just speak from the heart.

For more on how to make the most of your knowledge and experience during the job search process, turn to the Little Rock staffing and career management professionals at CSS.

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