What excites you the most about a career as an alcohol and drug counselor?
How to Answer
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How to Answer
The interviewer would like to know what aspect of working as a counselor is of the most significant interest to you. Before your interview, having completed some research on the interviewing company is essential. Be sure to envision where you can see yourself fitting, and growing with the organization. Do some research on what a career path could look like with this particular company. Show your passion as an alcohol and drug counselor. Tell the interviewer about some exciting milestones you've been a part of over the last few years if that information is applicable.
"The thing that excites me most about work as an addictions counselor is knowing that a new challenge, and opportunity to help, will come through the door each day to challenge me and make me a stronger therapist. When it comes to this particular job, one thing that excites me is to be able to give back as an LADC supervisor."
The interviewer wants to know more about your professional relationships. No matter how difficult, unfair or terrible your previous boss was, use this question as an opportunity to share what you learned from them and what you learned from your last role. The world of counseling can be small so avoid speaking poorly of anyone for whom you have worked!
"My former boss taught me the importance of precision. He was particular about every little detail, from preparing for client appointments to filling out reports. I learned how to tune my skills and identify the slightest details that could make all the difference in a life or death situation."
In this particular situation, your interviewer is looking to see if you have a mentor in the same career field. If your crazy best friend is your life mentor, you may want to censor and save those stories for another time. The interviewer wants to know from whom you get your professional direction and advice. Perhaps a professor has taken you under their wing. Share your story but make it brief.
"I've had several great mentors, but my most influential was Ms. Smith, my supervisor while I was working towards supervision hours in my first position. I truly learned a lot from her and felt I am the therapist I am today because of her."
Now is not the time to be clever and tell the interviewer that you plan on being in his position in 5 years. Too soon my friend! What you will want to say to the interviewer is that you would like to move up the ladder, but earn your way there.
Some options for 5-years growth are:
- Entering another department that interests you but you do not yet have the experience required.
- Teaching and mentoring others who are junior to you.
- Finishing or elevating your post-secondary education.
Whatever direction you want to go in the next five years, ensure that your answer shows growth and excitement for what this particular organization is doing.
You have likely become a fantastic multi-tasker through your counseling career. Tell the interviewer how you prioritize your workload to avoid getting overworked and behind. When your workload is unmanageable are you able to ask your co-workers for help? Asking for help and offering assistance, when able, will show the interviewer that you are a real team player.
"I arrive 20 minutes early to work each day. This punctual behavior gives me time to grab a cup of coffee, review my patient's charts, prioritize my to-do list and get started as soon as the workday begins."
Writers for Alcohol and Drug Counselor Answers and Questions
Heather Douglass has over 20 years experience recruiting and hiring candidates. She has a knack for resume writing. You can find her on twitter at @heatherinidaho.
Rachelle Enns is an executive head-hunter and job search expert. Utilized by top executives from Fortune 100 & 500 companies like Fitbit, Microsoft, General Electric, Nestle, and more, she helps professionals position themselves in a competitive marketplace. Rachelle founded Renovate My Resume, a company that focuses on helping job seekers get their edge back. Renovate My Resume creates stand-out resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles and professional summaries for new grads, all the way to corporate executives. Rachelle spends much of her time training career coaches, recruiters, and resume writers. She also holds interview workshops for students and interns, globally. For great tips and tricks, follow Rachelle on Instagram @_rachelle_e or @renovatemyresume.
First written on: 05/29/2013 Last modified on: 08/30/2018
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About Alcohol and Drug Counselor
August 17th, 2017
As a Drug and Alcohol Counselor you help addicts with both crisis and long-term management issues. You find immediate medical help and prevent a return to addiction on an ongoing basis. As a Drug and Alcohol Counselor you help your clients find housing, employment, medical help, and peer support through groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and assist your clients in navigating public aid systems. Your day consists of interviews to assess clients addictions and mental health issues and work with the client to determine the best course of treatment.
As a Drug and Alcohol Counselor you have excellent listening, speaking skills and are able to communicate with a broad spectrum of people with varying educational levels. Compassion and optimisim are your greatest characteristics. You must also be able to remain calm under pressure and should be able to manage chronic stress.
During your interview you'll want to maintain eye contact and practice your active listening skills just as you would during a session with a patient. During your interview it will be important not to share patient details or any identifying information.