You Made It to the 2nd Interview—Now What?

Congrats, you made it to round two! The most nerve-racking part of the job-searching process is over. A second interview brings you one step closer to being a hired physician, but there are some things to keep in mind before sealing the deal. Second interviews require a different kind of prep work and using the following tips will help keep you ahead of the competition.

The basics

First things first: remember the basics. The interviewing skills that are important for the first interview, found here on our blog, still apply in the second. Some other basics include:

  • Have a solid understanding of the health group and what it values
  • Identify what you have to offer
  • Know what kind of physicians the health group typically cares for
  • Present yourself as well-rounded in terms of bedside manner, medical skills, work ethic, etc.
  • Have positive body language

Don’t get too comfortable knowing you have your foot in the door. Basics are essential to maintaining a good impression and should still be at the top of your list when it comes to sitting down with potential employers.

The second impression

“Be nice to the gatekeeper,” says Michael Sievert, Vice President at CompHealth Locum Tenens. “The person at the front desk may not be the one hiring you, but that doesn’t mean his or her impression isn’t important. Many facilities specifically ask members of the front desk to give their impression of job candidates, which can play a role in the hiring decision. So make sure to treat everyone you meet during your interview with the utmost respect and kindness.”

In other words, it’s important to be respectful to everyone in the office. Maintain an air of confidence and positivity, and reach out and get to know people better while you’re there. After all, these could be your future coworkers! Don’t be afraid to send a follow-up thank you note to your interviewers or others who help you throughout the interview process.

The chance to dig deeper

Now’s a good time to think about more skills and experiences you can talk about to demonstrate what will make you a valuable physician to this health group. The Mayo Clinic recommends thinking about topics like how you handle patient complaints, strategies you use to communicate with fellow physicians, or a specific time you demonstrated a skill that added value to the team. This is an opportunity to get personal. Give them a glimpse of the kind of physician you are—the things you care about, the treatment plans you’re passionate about, etc.

The need to be current

Beyond your practical skills as a doctor and your emotional skills as a caregiver, it’s important to stay current on what’s going on in the field of medicine. When you’re able to talk about new technologies and procedures, controversial cases in the news, and thought leaders’ opinions on healthcare trends, you establish yourself as a more competent, engaged, actively learning physician. It will improve your confidence and impress the interviewers. Look for opportunities to discuss this knowledge with your interviewers, perhaps during questions regarding what sets you apart as a physician, how you develop your skills, what your personal philosophy is, and how you handle difficult cases.

The questions

When you reach the end of the interview, it’s important to ask meaningful questions. This shows the interviewers that you’re serious about this job, and helps you better identify if this is the health group for you. This can include questions regarding:

  • Health group culture and philosophy
  • Opportunities for growth and learning
  • Care priorities
  • Physician expectations
  • Crisis and malpractice policies
  • Training process
  • Next steps

For more ideas on what questions you can ask, read our blog post, 7 Questions You Need to Ask During Your Interview.

The decision

A second interview makes things a little more real—this health group might be your future work home. While you want to make sure your interviewers like you and that you’ve made it clear that you’re the best possible candidate, you also want to make sure that this health group will be a good fit for you. Consider what you learned about your potential responsibilities and expectations during your first interview and as you researched. Make sure to take more practical aspects – like salary, benefits, and work schedule into account. Think critically about whether or not this career path will set you up for where you want to be down the road, and use this second interview as another opportunity to really weigh your options. You really want to make sure that whatever job you choose will be the right fit.   

The follow up

Now that you’re at the end of second interview, how do you follow up without being annoying? If you didn’t have a chance to ask what the next steps are during your interview, then start with a thank you note. Send a note to each person involved in the interview process. And don’t put this off—feel free to send the note via card or email the same day, or within a few days, of your interview.

Now, if you want to touch base without a phone call first, Jenny Foss, career strategist, recommends “forwarding an article that you think [your recruiter will] find interesting, or congratulating her if you notice she’s been promoted or earned some sort of recognition [on LinkedIn]. Maybe thanking her for a bit of advice that you employed. Keep it simple and brief, and don’t ask for anything back. If that person hears from you and has an update? She’ll absolutely be in touch.”

But, if you feel comfortable calling to follow-up, be sure that you keep your calls to a minimum. If you aren’t able to connect with your interviewer, simply leave a short voicemail and trust that they’ll get back to you. Making a hiring decision is a big deal, and it can often take some time. So follow-up and then just be patient (we know it’s hard.)

Prepare to take round two like a champ with a little more in-depth preparation. Hang in there, you’re one step closer to your newest physician job. Still working on making it to the first interview? Start your job search on PhysEmp.

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