Employers want to know that you have a methodical approach to problem-solving. Consider the skills and qualities that help you successfully face problems. Perhaps you have a keen eye for detail. Maybe you can see opportunity when others can only focus on the issue. Share your strengths as a problem solver, and your ability to come up with innovative solutions.
"I am a great problem solver because I do not allow stress to cloud my judgment and mute my creativity. I am a keen observer with a great memory which allows me to recall unique solutions or ideas."
"I believe I am a great problem solver because I am sure to gather as many facts as possible, I look at the problem and its potential solutions from multiple angles, and I am not afraid to make a creative decision, that might seem off the beaten path."
The best way to discuss your salary expectations is to use your current earnings as an example. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.
"Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year plus a potential 20% annual bonus based on our facilities profits. Last year my earnings were $52,000, and I would like to stay in the same range or slightly higher."
"I am currently making $80,000 per year. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides an opportunity for growth."
It is always best to support your reply with a real-life example. Talk to the interviewer about your level of attentiveness when it comes to details on the job.
"My co-workers would describe my attention to detail as very strong. I can very easily point out spelling discrepancies in communication and will notice the small things. I think big-picture as well but have always had a knack for details."
"My attention to detail is a point that I have been working on a lot this past year. I am meticulous but, in the past, have pushed my documentation back a little bit. It's something I am conscious of and continually working on."
Maintaining priorities is key to your success when working with a large organization like Cerner. When you feel torn between multiple projects or tasks, how do you decide which one needs your attention the most? Assure the interviewer that you can be diligent when it comes to assessing your priorities.
"I will determine which project requires my attention by the number of hours we are behind and then the project size. I am comfortable delegating tasks when needed, but I am also aware that these times will require an additional commitment of hours from me. Never have I under delivered on a deadline."
"Assuming that the projects have different stakeholders, I interview each to determine the value of increased productivity, morale or revenue, decreased costs, and the overall impact."
The interviewer would like to know if you genuinely feel that honesty is the best policy. Many will argue that honesty is not always the best policy. What is your take? Talk to the interviewer about your thoughts on morality in the workplace.
"Sometimes full disclosure can damage someone's self-esteem, and reality isn't always best expressed in full and can be self-indulgent based on the person's intention. In those instances, honesty isn't always the best policy."
"Honesty is always the best policy. Often, it is just a matter of how you communicate and deliver your message so managing this with each situation is critical to building honest and trustworthy relationships."
Show the interviewer that you know your strengths and talk about a profession that seems exciting and interesting to you. It's great to talk about a dream job but be sure to solidify your interest in the role and career path for which you are interviewing.
"I cannot imagine being unable to work in this profession because I enjoy it so much! If I had to draw on my other skills and passions, I would choose to work for a non-profit organization such as the local animal shelter. I am a big animal lover so that would be a lot of fun."
"I am a very creative person who has always had a penchant for the arts. I realize that it's completely different than my career path but if I knew, early on, that I could have made a career as an artist - I would have explored that option further. Of course, I am delighted with the choices I made and never have any regrets."
One of the toughest parts of communication can be delivering bad news to people that you work with and for whom you care. Whether it is providing a less than positive work review or terminating someone, giving bad news is not an easy task. Assure the interviewer that you can handle this type of duty in a transparent, concise, and professional manner.
"I certainly do not enjoy communicating bad news to a co-worker, but I do have experience in doing so. When this type of task is required of me, I make sure to practice empathy. Truth is always key, so I will be honest and clear when communicating the news. For instance, if I am to terminate someone's employment, I will not sugar coat the reasons why. It's best they know so that they can learn from the experience."
"I am very to-the-point when it comes to my communication skills. Good or bad news, there is always a way to improve the situation and create something good from it. After delivering bad news, I will work with my coworker to find a viable solution."
On a scale of 1-10, how skilled are you in communication? Why did you choose that particular rating for yourself?
"I rate my communication skills as a 9/10 as I will, on occasion, have times when I am not as clear as I would like to be. My supervisor and co-workers will attest to my clear and concise communication skills. Because I am an open leader, my team will let me know if I need to clarify anything."
"I will rate myself an 8.5 because I consider myself a strong communicator. It is the foundation of all success in business. I am always striving to be a better communicator, so I leave the rest of the scale as an aspirational measure."
When you have a great relationship with the individuals you are leading, your leadership skills will be the most effective. Show the interviewer that you recognize a great relationship starts with clear communication, trust, and honesty. Tell the interviewer that you spend time genuinely getting to know your team. For instance, perhaps you like to understand what activities they have going on both inside and outside of work, their kids' names, or if they have any pets. Building a relationship with your team will ensure that you can frequently and genuinely ask them how they are doing. The more comfortable they are, the better chance they will come to you for help in the workplace when they need it.
"My leadership skills are the most effective when my relationship with the employee isn't just a surface connection. I want to have true knowledge of their life and a good understanding of their career goals. When my employees know that I can help them to achieve their goals, they are more likely to be an engaged part of the team."
"I feel that my leadership skills are directly related to the happiness and engagement of my team. I spend a lot of time making sure that my team of staff are happy, confident, and invested in their jobs."
Not everyone has a mission statement or personal mantra just off the cuff. In business, especially when entering leadership, this is an important question to ponder. Do you have a quote that inspires you or a saying that you grew up with that resonates with you?
"My mantra is that 'people who shine from within do not need the spotlight.' I feel that it is incredibly important to be a humble leader and I take this mission statement very seriously. I want my team to be in the spotlight rather than being the kind of leader that takes credit for good work."
"My mission is to give my best 100% of the time. It's important to me that I have a great reputation in this industry through hard work and a positive attitude."
Pick a weakness that is not a core skill for this position. You can be candid in your answer; recognizing that you aren't great at something and acknowledging your need to improve. Be sure to have an action plan in place for improving on this weakness. Perhaps you are watching TED talks to gain skills in a particular area, reading the latest-and-greatest book on the subject, or maybe you are taking a seminar at a nearby community center. We are all human with our weaknesses, so don't be afraid to share yours!
"I believe I could improve on some technical skills including Excel and PowerPoint. Currently I am at a beginner to intermediate level; however, I would be more comfortable at an advanced level. I have enrolled myself in an evening/weekend workshop for the next six weeks. We will see how stellar my skills are after that course!"
"This is super cliche, but it's also true. I am not good at delegating to others. When I become submerged in a project, I don't like to give away any of the control. While this can be good, it can also definitely inhibit the outcome of the project and my growth as a team player and individual. I am currently working on this, as I know it is a deficit."
Cerner is an American supplier of health information technology (HIT) solutions, services, devices, and hardware. Talk to the interviewer about the areas of healthcare that bring passion to you. Is there a particular issue that you would carry more public awareness to if you could?
"There are so many healthcare issues that I am passionate about, but if I could choose one, I wish that the general public were more aware of the signs and dangers of undiagnosed childhood diabetes. I also believe in improving the way different healthcare departments communicate with each other, resulting in faster and more accurate patient care."
"This is a very tough question as there are so many underfunded, and worthy, healthcare issues. I am going to go with one of my biggest areas of interest and research. If I could increase public awareness on any healthcare related issue, I would choose pancreatic cancer. Yes, cancer does receive a lot of awareness; however, pancreatic cancer does not. This year, over 53,000 people in the USA will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer nearly 80% will die from the disease - both men and women."
The interviewer would like to know if you consider yourself a patient individual. Impatience can cause a lot of stress and anxiety in coworkers, so it is essential that you can showcase your ability to remain patient and professional in workplace situations. Patience is indeed a virtue but can be challenging to maintain when it seems that situations continue to push your buttons. Show the interviewer that you possess the ability to keep your cool in challenging conditions.
"I do consider myself a patient person. I would rate myself an eight /10 for patience because I certainly have room to grow, but I do have a very long fuse. If I need a boost of patience in a challenging situation, I will take a step away, count to 10 and then return to the situation. I recently read a book, 'The Power of Patience' by M.J. Ryan which also gave me some excellent new methods for coping with stress."
"I was once working with a group that could not quite get along, and it tested my patience a bit because it prevented us from staying on track and focusing on the goals. I went above and beyond in helping the group get along by scheduling lunches as a team and helping to mediate situations that needed it."
Have you ever had to take on a task or a role that you felt was over your experience level? Talk to the interviewer about a time when you have dealt with this type of situation. What was the outcome, and what did you learn?
"When my manager went on unexpected medical leave for three months last year I was asked to step into her position in the interim. I knew the basics but was certainly not trained on the specifics of the role. I was able to take it on successfully by leaning on my team, reading a lot of company manuals, and asking many questions. Once my manager returned she was very pleased with the progress that I made, and I received a promotion."
"At times, I will be asked to perform tasks in our computer system that I am not completely familiar with. When this happens, I will not ask for help right away. Rather, I will search for the answer either in our manuals or online. I am comfortable taking on new tasks and enjoy learning new skills."
The interviewer wants to know if your reactions to problems reflect maturity and professionalism. How you react will significantly determine how you fit with their existing team. Perhaps your computer crashes, and you realize you may have just lost all of your hard work. Or maybe you are limited on time and have a deadline rapidly approaching. Demonstrate to the interviewer that you take a very methodical approach to problem-solving, rather than reacting impulsively when a problem occurs.
"When a major problem arises, my first instinct is to take a step back and absorb what just happened. I then go into "
"I have taught myself to become much calmer with my first reactions when problems arise. Now, I will step back and review my options for solving the problem rather than allow myself to become frustrated."
Talking about your most significant accomplishment will give the interviewer a definite idea of where you place your values. It will also show the interviewer more about your personality, how you like to be motivated, and how to coach you in the future. It is okay to brag a little bit when answering this question. Show that you are proud of yourself and your career accomplishments!
"The greatest accomplishment in my career was graduating University as an honors student while still working full time in a related field. I was top of my class, and working full time. This success showed me that I could dedicate myself to my career, and reach the goals that I set for myself. It felt great to accomplish so much and receive recognition for my dedication."
"I have many accomplishments that make me proud. Overall, I would say that my greatest work accomplishment is the positive reputation that I have in the healthcare industry. I take great pride in my work and am happy that this comes through in the results of my day to day work."
Display to the interviewer that you are interested in the new advances in healthcare. Be prepared to defend your answer.
"I follow a few medical journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet. I read a fascinating article a short time ago discussing the advancements in artificial retinae and other solutions for the blind. It's incredible to me how far these solutions have come."
"I believe that Patient-Centric R&D and Direct to Patient Clinical Research is the next big thing for the healthcare industry. I stay up to date on new trends through a variety of Google alerts, and some popular medical journals such as JAMA (Journal of American Medical Association). I love to learn new trends and tips, so if you'd like to share with me your favorites, I would love to hear about those!"
Talk to the interviewer about the research you have conducted when it comes to the workplace culture at Cerner Corporation. Assure the interviewer that you would find their workplace culture a stable fit. On the Cerner website, they describe their culture as driven by growth, success, and development. Cerner empowers success through internal communication that is frequent, open and consistent. They offer abundant career growth options and strive to create an environment of trust.
"I have researched the workplace culture at Cerner Corporation and feel that your environment is a perfect fit for what I am seeking. You encourage continued education of your employees and foster a collaborative environment with a concise message."
"My ideal workplace environment will include leaders who are encouraging and comfortable giving constructive feedback. I also prefer to work in an environment where growth and continued education is encouraged. I have heard great things about working for Cerner Corporation, and from what I understand, you offer exactly this type of environment."
The interviewer would like to feel confident that you are engaged in the interview process. Display that you have researched Cerner before your interview and getting to know what they do best. Talk about your research and findings.
"I have researched Cerner Corporation quite extensively, and through my research, I feel that your specialty is health information technology solutions for hospitals and other patient-centric businesses. Would you agree with this assessment?"
"As your website and advertisements say, you are the best in the area for patient compassion. I could not agree more that compassion is the number one area we should be great when it comes to the healthcare industry."
Talk to the interviewer about your post-secondary education. Discuss your high points and the more challenging points.
"I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Felician College in 2009. While attending University, I feel that my most challenging course was Statistics for Life Sciences. I completed this course with a B grade. My best course was in Mental Health Studies. I found it to be fascinating and graduated top of my class in that course."
"I recently graduated with my degree in Clinical Medical Assisting. There were many challenges along the way; however, I would say that my overall experience was incredibly positive. If I had to choose my biggest struggle, I would say that Anatomy and Physiology were the most in-depth. With that said, I did receive very high grades in those courses. My favorite subject of study, overall, was Pharmacology."
When you are having an especially stressful day, what keeps you motivated to continue? How can the interviewer be assured that you will always bring your 'A' game no matter what challenges you face?
"I can stay motivated, even on the tough days, because I know that my career focuses on helping people. I love to assist others and to know that I make a difference is all that I need."
"My motivation comes primarily from within me. I am skilled when it comes to pushing myself, and I remind myself on a regular basis that I am here to help others. I have a true servant-hood mentality, which drives me. In addition to this factor, I find external motivation from working with positive people who can teach me along the way. New knowledge and a fresh approach are fantastic motivators."
Think about the qualities you admire in other healthcare professionals. Talk to the interviewer about the qualities that you feel a healthcare provider should possess. Do you have these qualities?
"I feel that the most important qualities that a healthcare professional can possess are endless compassion, dedication, and a thirst for knowledge. I do possess these qualities and am excited to think about my potential growth with Cerner Corporation by applying these qualities."
"Here are some additional qualities that healthcare professionals should possess: - Clear communicator - Avid listener - Easy to understand - Ready to put patient needs first (selfless) - Desire to help - Integrity in all they do - Professionalism - Detail oriented - Able to self-manage - Healthy coping skills - Empathetic - Motivated - Ethical "
Talk to the interviewer about the ways that you would like to grow in your career over the next few years. The company wants assurance that you see this as a long-term fit and they want to know how to help you grow.
"I would like to grow into a leadership role in the next 3-4 years. Any additional training in leadership, mentorship, and management would be a great way to help me advance in your organization. I did see a Patient Financial Services Manager role on your job portal that seemed an exciting role to grow into."
"Thank you for asking! I would love to advance into medical billing and coding once I have enough experience in general health services administration. I foresee this happening in the next 2-3 years and am committing to this path by attending evening classes and a few related workshops."
What attracts you to this position with Cerner? Talk to the interviewer about your primary reasons for being drawn to this role. Solidify your answer by clearly stating your interest in landing the role.
"I want to work for Cerner because your industry reputation is second to none. I am seeking a long-term career opportunity in an emotionally and physically healthy environment. I would love to work here because you are an encouraging and fast paced environment with room for me to advance in my career."
"There are multiple reasons why I want to work for your organization. First, you are best in the industry for health information technology. Second, your workplace culture is collaborative and positive. Third, I feel that your community would offer me the growth that I crave in my career, and the opportunity to advance from within."
What makes you a stand-out candidate when there are so many other potential candidates for Cerner to consider? Talk to the interviewer about the qualities that make you the best candidate for them.
"There are a lot of talented people in the healthcare pool but what makes me stand out is my willingness to take feedback. I am a humble employee. Also, I am a dedicated worker. I have had just one sick day in 5 years."
"I believe that I am the best candidate for you because of my double degree in both Healthcare Management, and Health Services Administration. In addition to these studies, I am also bilingual in both English and Spanish. This skill will enable me to communicate very clearly with your predominantly Spanish community."
On the Cerner website they claim their dedication to encouraging associates to share their ideas, take the initiative and be accountable for their work. Being dedicated to your professional development and knowledge is a huge bonus for most employers. Talk to the interviewer about the area of healthcare that you would expand your knowledge if given the opportunity.
"I feel that I can always learn more about compassionate care and the techniques surrounding long-term compassionate care. I like the idea of professional development and am open to any coursework you suggest."
"There is always more to learn in a variety of areas; however, I would especially enjoy furthering my education and training in pediatric care. I find children to be most interesting to work with."
Cerner Corporation is a supplier of health care information technology (HCIT) solutions, services, devices and hardware. Cerner solutions optimize processes for health care organizations. These solutions are currently licensed by approximately 9,300 facilities around the world, including more than 2,650 hospitals, 3,750 physician practices, 40,000 physicians, 500 ambulatory facilities, 800 home health facilities, 40 employer sites, and 1,600 retail pharmacies. As of December 2013, the company had more than 14,200 employees globally.