10 Best Interview Questions for Geriatric Nurses

Interview questions for geriatric nurses

The interview process is a way for the employer and the potential employee to get to know each other, as well as help both parties determine if they’re a good fit for one another.

So, what is it like to interview for a geriatric nurse position?

When joining a healthcare profession, geriatric nursing is no exception to interviewing for a position. Schedule your interview as soon as possible.

Geriatric nursing requires specific training and certifications, as well as strong communication and interpersonal skills.

Employers tend to hire those who are able to show that they possess these qualities, even during the recruitment process.

Be prepared with an outline of your qualifications, knowledge base, and certifications to discuss with the interviewer.

When getting asked various interview questions for geriatric nurses, be prepared to clearly state your answers.

You might have a few talking points you’d like to cover throughout the interview process with an employer, so prepare accordingly.

It’s important to know how these different types of nursing positions align with your career goals and personality traits.

Going into the interview with that knowledge can help you establish rapport with the interviewer.

Keep in mind that potential employers will evaluate your appearance, too.

Despite any formal attire you put on for the interview, be sure to showcase a professional style.

All the above is to help you ensure a smooth interview process for yourself, and a chance at a successful career.

So, what are some of the interview questions for geriatric nurses?

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Geriatric nurse interview questions

The Most Common Interview Questions for Geriatric Nurses

When shortlisted for a job as a geriatric nurse, there are certain questions you can expect from the interviewer.

There are so many possible questions the panel could ask.

The following 10 common interview questions will familiarize you with the types of things that might be brought up at the interview.

1. Tell us about yourself.

In this interview question, the interviewer will often ask you to speak very briefly about your life background and career goals.

See also: SMART Goals for Nursing

Some have even been asked to talk about their family before moving on to discuss their professional experience.

This is a good way for an employer to get a better idea of what you’re looking for in a job going forward.

Example answer:

I’m a native New Yorker.

I grew up in the Bronx and graduated from Ramapo College of New Jersey with a degree in psychology, before going on to get my nursing certificate from Mercy Hospital School of Nursing.

I’ve worked at Mercy Hospital in Southside for 12 years now.

My first two years were spent in pediatrics, but I’ve been in the geriatric unit for over ten years now.

Taking care of seniors is really important to me, and I’d like to work with more patients in that area.

See also: Nursing Interview Questions and Answers

2. What is your greatest strength?

This interview question for geriatric nurses acts as an opportunity for you to highlight your skillset and show why you’re a good fit for the job.

It’s also important to mention that employers love knowing what your weaknesses are, too.

This helps them determine if they can be coached on how to improve.

If not, they might take it as an indication that you lack the capability to grow with the company over time.

Example answer:

I’d say that my greatest strength would be my knowledge base and expertise in medicine.

I’ve always enjoyed learning about the newest treatments available; we’re frequently updating our textbooks in the nurse’s station.

I have a very good understanding of how age-related conditions can affect people, so when I’m providing care it’s necessary to be able to explain what’s causing the issues to patients and their families.

I also love learning about new equipment for seniors, especially those that can help them live comfortably at home instead of having to go into long-term care facilities.

Probably my biggest weakness is that I tend to work really hard; I like to make sure all our patients are happy and healthy.

I often work long hours to complete my duties.

See also: Why Do Nurses Work 12-Hour Shifts?

3. What are your professional goals?

The interviewer will want to know if you’re ready and willing to move up with the company.

If they feel like your ambitions would take you away from patient care, they might lose interest in hiring you.

Example answer:

I’d like to stay at Mercy Hospital for as long as I can; this is a really great work environment.

I’m hoping to eventually become a charge nurse, which is the next step in line for management.

If you like, I can walk you through my career timeline so that you can see my progressions.

See also: Nurse Leadership Interview Questions

4. Why should we hire you?

The interviewer wants to make sure you’re a fit for the company.

They’ll want to know how your personality will mesh with other employees and what specific skills and qualities you bring that would be helpful in this position.

Example answer:

At Mercy Hospital, patients are our first priority.

I’m here to make sure that each one of them gets the best care possible.

I’ve worked on this unit for quite some time now, so I understand all the ins and outs of the job, including how to relieve nurses who are stuck at their stations during busy hours – it’s one of my favorite duties.

I’m patient and courteous, so I get along well with all the patients and their families.

Working with me also means that you’ll have a good amount of flexibility for your schedule: I can work evenings and weekends if needed.

See also: Do Hospice Nurses Stay Overnight?

5. What tough decision have you ever made as a geriatric nurse?

The interviewer wants to see how you deal with difficult situations.

It’s important to point out that you have a strong sense of ethics and morals, so if a conflict arises, you use an ethical decision-making structure to determine the best course of action.

Example answer:

I’d say my toughest decision was when I had a patient who was declining rapidly.

We’d been treating him for a while, and he had been improving steadily.

One day, his condition took a turn for the worse; we determined that nothing more could be done to save him.

I decided to do everything in my power to make his last few hours comfortable, even if it meant providing comfort care at home.

My coworkers respected my decision because they knew he’d been a difficult patient to deal with. In the end, I think his family appreciated our efforts to make him comfortable.

See also: Dementia Nurse Interview Questions

6. What motivated you to become a geriatric nurse?

The interviewer wants to know what drives you. They want to make sure that you’re interested in this position for the right reasons, and that it’s not just a job.

If they feel like your passions align with theirs (improving patient care), then they’ll be more likely to hire you.

Example answer:

I’ve always enjoyed working with senior citizens.

I became interested in caring for them because my grandma was elderly when I was growing up, and she had a lot of trouble getting around the house on her own.

I wanted to be there for her, so that’s why I decided to pursue nursing as a career.

See also: Why Do You Want to Be a Nurse Interview Question

7. What would your former supervisor describe as your greatest weakness?

The interviewer wants to know if you make a good employee.

Cite a negative quality about your personality or work habits, something that can be overcome with further training and maturity.

Example answer:

I’d have to say I’m overly caring.

Sometimes I take things too personally, and it can get in the way of my job performance.

For example, a resident’s family member once chastised me for ‘not doing enough to keep their loved one healthy…

It hurt a lot because I really felt like I was trying to do everything I could.

Example answer:

I have a hard time saying no to others.

I’m always willing to help out with co-workers’ duties, which means I’m often doing several people’s jobs.

That can be overwhelming at times.

8. What are the roles of a geriatric nurse?

The interviewer wants to know what you already know about this position.

They’ll want to confirm that you have a good understanding of what the job entails and whether or not it interests you.

Example answer:

A geriatric nurse’s roles can include: assisting with physical and occupational therapy, helping patients adapt to new medications, and making sure patients have the mental capacity to make decisions about their care.

In some cases, a geriatric nurse can also provide end-of-life care.

See also: Interview Questions for Hospice Nurses

9. What would you do if an older patient refused to take part in their own treatment?

The interviewer is testing your communication skills.

A nurse is always coming into contact with patients, family members, and other healthcare professionals, so they need to be able to deal with people who are upset or not happy.

Example answer:

I would talk with them about why they don’t want to go ahead with treatment, then try to get them to understand the benefits of the treatment plan.

If they still refuse, I would meet with their family members and ask what it is about their loved one that makes them ideal for this particular treatment.

Regardless of whether or not my patient decides to receive treatment, I’d be sure to help guide their family through the process.

See also: LPN Interview Questions

10. How do you define patient advocacy?

The interviewer wants to know if you understand what your job really entails.

They want to see if you understand the concept of advocating for your patients, of putting their needs first.

Example answer:

Patient advocacy means advocating for your patients, listening to their concerns, and trying to make them feel comfortable.

It also means explaining procedures clearly to reduce anxiety or fear.

See also: Nursing Care Plan for Anxiety

Conclusion: Geriatric Nurse Interview Questions

Asking questions during an interview is an extremely useful tool for the interviewer.

They’re able to assess how you communicate, how well you understand what your job entails, and whether or not you’ll be a good fit for their company.

Make sure that your answers are personal.

Don’t give generic responses like “I’m a very organized person” or “I’m a people person”.

Only give answers that you truly believe about yourself, and have some personal story to back up your response.

If you can do this, you’ll increase your chances of getting a job as a geriatric nurse.

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About Ida Koivisto, BSN, RN, PHN

Ida is both a registered nurse and public health nurse. Her passion is to provide as much valuable information about nursing to the world as possible. In her spare time from work and blogging, Ida loves to work out at the gym and spend time with relatives.