Research Is Must
Before the interview, you must do your homework. Find out whether the hospital where you are seeking a job has got the Magnet status from the American Nurses Association. The status indicates a healthy work environment. The status, however, doesn’t guarantee harmony among nurses. Magnet status is awarded to hospitals where nursing is excellent, nursing employees express high level of job satisfaction, nurse turnover rate is low and proper grievance redressal mechanism is in place. If the hospital is not having the Magnet status, find out whether it is working to get it. Better consider the reputation of the hospital and see whether it syncs with your values.
Seek Precise Information During Interviews
When recruiting manager, probably your potential manager, ask you how you would handle a particular situation, answer the question and then ask him how interpersonal conflicts are resolved and how do you support your staff. If there is no proper dialogue, then take it for granted that the work environment in the hospital is unhealthy.
You can go on asking specific questions like: What are the channels available for fixing problems that you cannot solve on your own? What if you have an issue with a colleague or a physician?
You can as well seek clarifications on assignments making, sharing equitable sharing of responsibilities. Put a straight question like: Would less experienced nurses be given less desirable assignments ignoring their growth needs? How much self-governance exists in the organization? Are staff nurses are involved in drafting policies and procedures?
These are some questions you should not hesitate to ask the interviewer. Also request the interviewer to speak on the personalities in the unit.
Another area you can probe is staff retention and turnover rates both for the entire institution and the unit you are being interviewed for. Tactfully find out how many grievances the unit has had. You can as well ask for the minutes of the last staff meeting where any major problem should have been documented.
Take A Workplace Tour
Besides asking questions, you can as well know a lot more through observation. Take a look at the unit manager’s office and see whether it can be easily accessible. Seek permission to spend at least an hour in the hospital especially when the physicians take rounds. See whether the people are relaxed.
Observe how nurses interact with each other, especially with the incoming staff. It may be interesting to notice how nurses interact with the manager. Are the physicians easily approachable? The answer to this question gives you an idea of the work environs there.