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Medical Manager Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by Darby Faubion

Updated December 11th, 2018 | Darby Faubion has been a Nurse and Allied Health Educator for over twenty years. She has clinical experience in several specialty areas including pediatrics, medical-surgical, critical care, and hospice.
Job Interviews     Careers     Management    
Question 1 of 30
How important is it for a medical manager to be a patient person?
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How to Answer
Interaction with staff and patients requires good communication skills. Part of practicing good communication is the ability to be patient with others. Working as a medical manager can be a very satisfying job, but it requires a lot of work and patience. The interviewer wants to know that you are comfortable with your ability to be patient and offer guidance/support when needed.
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Answer Examples
1.
How important is it for a medical manager to be a patient person?
Interaction with staff and patients requires good communication skills. Part of practicing good communication is the ability to be patient with others. Working as a medical manager can be a very satisfying job, but it requires a lot of work and patience. The interviewer wants to know that you are comfortable with your ability to be patient and offer guidance/support when needed.

Darby's Answer #1
"I believe that being patient is a very important characteristic for any person to possess, especially those who want to be in a supervisory position. We often have very hectic schedules and work with staff and patients who have diverse personalities and needs. Being able to focus on the needs of others while performing our job can be very demanding. However, patience is a must."
Darby's Answer #2
"Being patient is very important for a medical manager. Some staff we work with require only simple assistance. Others require more detailed assistance until they learn how to do their assignments independently. We have to know how to identify staff who require a little extra time and try to accommodate that."
2.
Being a medical office manager requires great attention to detail and often multi-tasking. How do you keep yourself from becoming overwhelmed?
Managing the care of several staff and patients requires the ability to multi-task and ensure all details are checked and double-checked. In a medical manager interview, discuss your understanding of the importance of maintaining detailed patient records and employee files, including documentation of employee continuing education.

Darby's Answer #1
"I am very detail-oriented. One of my strengths is to multi-task. I think I have college and having a big family to thank for that! I have always tried to make sure that I have a mental list of things that I know need to be accomplished in a day and I try to work through it. Of course, when managing several people, there is always the chance of something unexpected coming up, but that is just part of the job and we have to manage those issues as they arise."
Darby's Answer #2
"I have learned to recognize the things that may cause me to feel overwhelmed and try to address them before a situation gets out of hand. For example, I always like to make sure that I have reviewed all the documents that are presented to me by the end of the business day. I also like to follow up to make sure that all physician orders were signed for the previous day so that they can be entered into the computer and that each department has a list of assignments that need to be completed for the following day. This keeps things from piling up and leaving me to feel overwhelmed later on."
3.
What is a common misconception that people have about a medical office manager?
Not everyone has a clear understanding of what medical office managers do. They may understand a medical term, such as cardio refers to the heart, or know that a family physician can see any age range of patient, but they don't always understand the role of the medical manager and how your job helps a clinic or medical office run efficiently. This is an opportunity for you to share what you think of your profession.

Darby's Answer #1
"I think a common misconception about medical office managers is that we are not familiar with legal issues related to the medical profession or that we are not active in patient care. While we do not provide hands-on patient care, medical office managers are very active in making sure patient care is handled well by the whole healthcare team. We work hand in hand with the medical director to make sure that records are up to date, to make sure that employees are trained on policies and changing guidelines within the medical field, and to make sure that documentation is in order. Additionally, we are responsible for managing the scheduling of employees and patient appointments. At the end of the day, it takes a group of healthcare providers with varying degrees of specialization to provide collaborative, effective care for patients."
Darby's Answer #2
"I think there are a number of misconceptions about medical office personnel, in general. One of the most common misconceptions is that we sit in an office behind a desk all day and have no involvement or understanding of patient care. Medical office managers are actually much more involved in the day to day running of a medical office than people realize. Our job is to manage several employees, medical charts, and billing. It is much more than 'sitting behind a desk' all day. Caring is at our heart."
4.
Why did you choose a career as a medical office manager?
Interviewers almost always ask what made a candidate choose a particular career. One important thing to remember is, do not mention money. Although you have likely chosen a career that you feel you can support your family with, the interviewer is looking for an answer that points more to the caring side of you.

For instance: "I have always wanted to work in the medical field, but really wasn't sure if the clinical side of the industry was something for me. As I began to research different types of careers, being a medical office manager really seemed to fit the goals I had. I get to be a part of a medical team and build relationships with patients and medical staff, but I don't have to work the clinical side of medications and treatments."
Darby's Answer #1
"I have always wanted to work in the medical field, but really wasn't sure if the clinical side of the industry was something for me. As I began to research different types of careers, being a medical office manager really seemed to fit the goals I had. I get to be a part of a medical team and build relationships with patients and medical staff, but I don't have to work the clinical side of medications and treatments."
Darby's Answer #2
"I have always been very computer savvy. I also loved the idea of being involved in healthcare. I get the best of both worlds being a medical office manager."
5.
If your medical office is facing an external disaster, what will you reaction to the situation be?
An external disaster is any disaster outside of the medical facility that could potentially cause issues within the facility. For instance, a tornado or other weather-related event, an accident that may cause an influx of patients, or a threat of terrorism. As a medical manager, it is important to be prepared for possible disasters and have an action plan in place that has been rehearsed with employees. The interviewer wants to know that you are capable of making judgment calls in stressful situations.

Darby's Answer #1
"Being prepared as much as possible before an event occurs, I believe, is key to getting through a disaster situation. If I were notified of an external disaster, the first thing I would do is caution staff that there may be some influx of people into the clinic. I would remind them that remaining calm and trying to help maintain order is the best way to prevent a situation from escalating. If the disaster is one that requires taking cover such as a tornado, I would have the staff assist me in directing patients to the safe zone within the facility until the threat has passed."
Darby's Answer #2
"Taking the time to educate staff on emergency plans before an event occurs is crucial. The medical manager or front office staff are usually the first to be notified of a disaster, especially an external disaster. Knowing this, I like to make sure that front office personnel and staff are aware of emergency preparedness protocol. If I am notified of an external emergency, I alert the staff of what is going on and take appropriate measures to move patients, if needed, to the designated areas in the emergency protocol."
6.
Being a medical office manager can be very stressful. What are some things that you do to promote a healthy balance between work and your personal life?
Being able to balance your hectic work schedule with your personal responsibilities and goals is often difficult. Psychologists today say that having a healthy work/life balance is crucial to help prevent becoming too stressed which could result in physical complications. The interviewer wants to know that you identify with the need for having a healthy life balance.

Darby's Answer #1
"You're right. Work can be stressful at times. I think that's true with any profession. I try to leave work at work, so to speak. I enjoy cooking and gardening and on my off time from work, I dedicate a great deal of time to those hobbies. It helps me feel productive, but not overworked."
Darby's Answer #2
"I really enjoy being outdoors. Anything that has to do with bicycling or hiking is something I could do every day. When I'm off work, I like to spend some time each week in the outdoors. It's good exercise, which helps reduce stress and anxiety and helps promote good heart health, as well."
7.
Tell me about a time you had to deal with significant changes in your workplace. How did you manage those changes?
In any healthcare setting, change is inevitable. Technology, processes, leadership, laws, and organizations change on a regular basis and with change at a high level comes changes in work processes. For this question, it is important to stress how you are open to change when it makes the end results better for not only the patient but for those who work with you. As a medical office manager, you should be able to recognize changes that are needed and be prepared to address them with employees and provide any training necessary. Talk about a specific change you had to endure in the workplace and express how you embraced the change.

Darby's Answer #1
"In my previous employment roles, I have been a part of many changes that affected my day-to-day duties on the job. I have always embraced the technological changes and work process advancements because, in the end, they make our jobs easier, safer and better for the individual patients. The biggest change that I had to endure was an organizational merger when a private hospital I was working for merged with a larger health system. During this merger, my day-to-day work was flipped upside down from new computer systems to work on, a new work location, new leadership structure and a change in pay and benefits. With a focus on the end in mind and how great it was going to be to work for a much larger and well-established employer, I was able to be a positive influence on my team for helping others embrace the change and see the light at the end of the tunnel while changes were happening."
Darby's Answer #2
"During my years in college, I worked at a large grocery store as a cashier. After working there for one year, the company purchased a new touchscreen register system that replaced the old system I was familiar with. Knowing how much more efficiently and accurately I would be able to work when the changes came, I was happy when the announcement was made to our team of cashiers. Of course, others were not as happy as they'd have to learn a new system. For me, knowing how much the new system would help our work process made it easy to embrace the change. Moving forward, I fully understand how the healthcare world needs to embrace change on a regular basis and you'll find that I'm a person that can help lead change management among my peers."
8.
Do you participate in any outreach or volunteer work?
Although being a community volunteer is not a requirement for employment, willingness to give of your time and resources to others without compensation shows the interviewer that you have a sincere desire to serve others. If you have volunteered, share a positive experience you had as a volunteer. If you have not volunteered, it is not necessary to embellish your answer. Stating that you have not volunteered previously is not going to disqualify you from employment.

Darby's Answer #1
"I love to volunteer! A group of ladies from my church volunteer at a soup kitchen close to my home once a month. There is nothing like the feeling of giving to someone that you know cannot give back to you! Are there opportunities for employees to volunteer through the hospital?"
Darby's Answer #2
"I have volunteered at MedCamps for kids a few summers. I do think community involvement is important."
9.
If you had a staff member whose employment had to be terminated, how would you handle the situation?
Anyone working in a supervisory/management position knows that one of the dreaded parts of that job is having to terminate employment. The interviewer wants to know that you are comfortable performing the difficult parts of management.

Darby's Answer #1
"Terminating employment is one of the dreaded parts of being a manager, but sometimes it just has to be done. Whenever I am faced with having to terminate employment, I like to look at the whole situation, what led up to this point, and make sure I have documentation ready before calling an employee in. I like to talk to the employee and go through the reasons a decision was made for termination, give the employee an opportunity to ask questions/give feedback, and have all appropriate paperwork signed."
Darby's Answer #2
"Being new to management, I have not yet had to terminate anyone's employment contract. I have to say, it is the one thing I do not look forward to. Nevertheless, when the time comes that I must, I believe I will be fair and as sympathetic as the situation allows."
10.
Has there ever been a time that you had a disagreement with a coworker? If so, how was it resolved?
Any time you work with someone else, there is a chance of having a disagreement about something at one time or another. The interviewer knows this. It's human nature for people to have their own opinions. What is important to the interviewer in this question is whether or not you are willing to compromise and work through difficult situations with your co-workers. Being unwilling to compromise or find alternative solutions to a dispute can affect everyone on the team, even if it is indirectly. Sharing a personal experience is OK, but do not embellish it to 'be the hero.'

Darby's Answer #1
"I believe if we think about it, each of us could remember at least one disagreement with a friend or co-worker. Although I consider myself to be pretty easy-going, I am also very passionate about my patients and the care that they receive. I have been aware of disagreements between other co-workers, but really like to think of myself as more of a peacekeeper. I feel like professional people should be able to discuss things logically and come to an agreement that is satisfactory for everyone involved."
Darby's Answer #2
"I am usually a very soft-spoken person and strive to be the 'peacekeeper.' I can't recall any specific incident of a disagreement. I would like to think if a disagreement should arise that I would be able to handle it professionally and resolve the issue without any long-term consequences."
11.
What are some examples of ways that you like to promote building strong relationships within your staff?
As a medical manager, one of your goals should be to foster a good working environment and promote strong team building and relationships between your staff members. Working within a group that is full of conflict or that is always striving against one another is not an environment conducive to promoting good patient care. The interviewer wants to know that you value strong relationships and that you are capable of initiating team building within your team.

Darby's Answer #1
"I believe in the importance of having a strong team of people with common goals in mind. I like to plan lunches once a month with my staff, whether it is a potluck or having a catered lunch so that the employees can have a little time to relax and enjoy one another's company. This may seem like a simple gesture, but when the stresses of work seem to be overwhelming, even a short lunch with those who have things in common with you can make a world of difference."
Darby's Answer #2
"I learned from a previous employer that strong relationships between team members are very important when it comes to working together and providing exceptional patient care. I like to give staff a chance to rotate to different areas of the office so that they have an opportunity to work with more than one staff member and get to know them. It really is a great way for employees to learn about one another."
12.
What is one of your weaknesses and what do you do to help address/resolve it?
This is probably one of the most dreaded questions in a job interview. Answering this question requires self-evaluation and honesty. Remember, whatever weakness you decide to share, make sure it is not a key characteristic needed to perform your job as a medical office manager.

Darby's Answer #1
"I think one of my biggest weaknesses is that I can get sidetracked easily. I recognize that in myself and have made a conscious effort to plan my day as much as possible and to stay on target."
Darby's Answer #2
"I know you may not think this about someone who has chosen a career as a medical office manager, but one of my weaknesses is that I often get nervous around people I don't know. I know we all do that to a certain degree, but for me, it became something that I was very aware of. I now try to attend social activities where I know there are going to be opportunities to meet new people so that I can overcome social anxiety."
13.
How do you go about handling an employee evaluation that requires you to give negative feedback?
Receiving negative feedback is often disheartening, but it does not have to be an experience that leaves an employee feeling devalued. Being able to discuss difficult subjects with your staff and make a plan to help remedy the situation shows great leadership skills.

Darby's Answer #1
"I was always taught that in situations where something negative needs to be discussed, the conversation should begin with a positive and end with a positive. By that, I mean it is always good to talk about something good that the employee has done, for instance completing a job on time. Then I address whatever situation may seem to be negative. I end the conversation with another positive note, whether it's a show of appreciation for how receptive the employee is to instruction or their positive attitude toward suggestions for improvement is always helpful."
Darby's Answer #2
"I once received what I felt was negative feedback on an evaluation. I have always tried to remember the way I felt and what I took away from the evaluation. With that in mind, I always like to speak with encouragement, so that the employee doesn't feel insecure. Having a negative feedback does not always mean that an employee is not a good employee. It just means that there is room for improvement. Recognizing that we all have room for improvement is helpful when trying to help an employee improve."
14.
How do you approach dealing with an angry patient, and why?
Knowing how you will handle a difficult situation will tell the interviewer if you have the right attitude for this job. Being a medical manager means you have to deal with people from very different backgrounds and with varying personalities. Give the interviewer an example of how you would handle an angry patient.

Darby's Answer #1
"I believe acting calmly and speaking rationally is a great way to calm someone who is angry and I try to be the voice of reason without making someone feel that I am belittling them."
Darby's Answer #2
"I think it is important to try and find out what has made the patient mad. If it is something such as not being called as quickly as he had expected, a simple explanation regarding what caused the delay may help calm him."
15.
Do you anticipate any significant changes in your life within the next 2-3 years that may prevent you from continuing employment here, if you are offered a position here?
Knowing what goals you have and any changes you anticipate in your life will give the interviewer an opportunity to evaluate two things: 1. what positions are available that won't disrupt your plans and, 2. are you interested in having a long-term relationship within the company? Either way, being upfront and honest is always appreciated.

Darby's Answer #1
"I recently became engaged. Although we have not set a date yet, we have agreed to wait twelve months before the marriage. My fiance' just passed the Bar exam here and has been offered an opportunity to join an existing law firm. Presently, our plans are to stay where we are and build a career, not just work a job. Also, we do not plan on having children for at least two years after our marriage. We both feel that being able to become established in our careers and save for our future would be the responsible thing to do before starting a family."
Darby's Answer #2
"My goal is to find a position that will allow me to work long term. I do not anticipate any significant changes that would affect that. I have family that lives nearby and close ties to the community."
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30 Medical Manager Interview Questions
Win your next job by practicing from our question bank. We have thousands of questions and answers created by interview experts.
Interview Questions
  1. How important is it for a medical manager to be a patient person?
  2. Being a medical office manager requires great attention to detail and often multi-tasking. How do you keep yourself from becoming overwhelmed?
  3. What is a common misconception that people have about a medical office manager?
  4. Why did you choose a career as a medical office manager?
  5. If your medical office is facing an external disaster, what will you reaction to the situation be?
  6. Being a medical office manager can be very stressful. What are some things that you do to promote a healthy balance between work and your personal life?
  7. Tell me about a time you had to deal with significant changes in your workplace. How did you manage those changes?
  8. Do you participate in any outreach or volunteer work?
  9. If you had a staff member whose employment had to be terminated, how would you handle the situation?
  10. Has there ever been a time that you had a disagreement with a coworker? If so, how was it resolved?
  11. What are some examples of ways that you like to promote building strong relationships within your staff?
  12. What is one of your weaknesses and what do you do to help address/resolve it?
  13. How do you go about handling an employee evaluation that requires you to give negative feedback?
  14. How do you approach dealing with an angry patient, and why?
  15. Do you anticipate any significant changes in your life within the next 2-3 years that may prevent you from continuing employment here, if you are offered a position here?
  16. How do you keep up with changes in trends related to medical management?
  17. What do you enjoy most about being a medical manager?
  18. What makes you think you are a good fit for the medical office manager position here?
  19. What are some things you would like for people to notice about your personality?
  20. How would you respond to a physician who is being rude to the office staff who are your subordinates?
  21. If one of the employees that you supervise came to you and stated that she is experiencing 'burn out,' what would your response be?
  22. If a patient without an appointment comes to the office with a possible emergency situation, but demands to see a physician in the clinic, what would your response be?
  23. In the event that two employees have a disagreement that they are unable to resolve, how would you handle trying to ease the conflict?
  24. How would your subordinates describe you?
  25. If you had an employee who was accused of sharing a patient's personal information without consent, how would you handle that situation?
  26. What characteristics do you look for in candidates when you are hiring for a position?
  27. What experience do you have working with subordinates from diverse background?
  28. Medical office managers are often the go-between for patients and providers. How would you handle an angry patient who refuses to speak to anyone but the physician regarding a complaint?
  29. In your opinion, what are some of the biggest problems in healthcare today?
  30. How would you handle a situation when a person who is not on a release of information requests medical information about his/her spouse?
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