Any person seeking an occupational therapist job must pass a face-to-face interview with the employer before getting the job. This is often the most intimidating part of the hiring process. But with the proper preparation, you can not only face the interview with confidence but also excel at it! This article will give you some tips for that occupational therapist job interview.
1: Use Good Body Language
Your body language tells a lot about you before you even say a word. Make sure yours demonstrates confidence. Walk into the interview room briskly, make good eye contact with the interviewer and firmly shake his or her hand. During the interview, sit straight up and keep your feet firmly on the floor. A bit of nervousness is understandable and forgivable, but don’t look as if you are fidgeting. Don’t blurt an answer out just because you think you have to. Thinking before you speak is not a bad thing at all.
2: Dress the Part
Although you will likely be wearing scrubs or dressing casually as an occupational therapist, you will want to dress professionally for the interview. Keep clothing conservative and avoid any excessive jewelry, makeup or cologne.
3: Be Prompt
Make sure you are on time for your interview. Nothing sends a worse message than being late. If you don’t know where the interview location is, find out ahead of time. It is generally a good idea to get there about 10 minutes early.
4: Prepare for Probing Questions
You may be asked questions that probe into your background for two reasons: to confirm information you’ve provided and to see what kind of person you are. The occupational therapist job requires a lot of tact in dealing with people. The interviewers want to understand where you are on this point. Examples of questions you might be asked include these:
- Why did you decide to become an occupational therapist?
- What was the most difficult decision you ever had to make?
5: Prepare for Hypothetical Questions
Some questions will set up imaginary situation for you to respond to. The interviewers want to see how you react to stress or how you will work in a team. Before answering these questions, think carefully. Such questions may resemble the following:
- How would you handle a patient who disagrees with your treatment?
- How would you work with a difficult child?
6: Research the Employer
It is not a bad idea to research the organization you are interviewing with. See if you can talk informally to an employee or former employee to get a little insight on the company and their policies.
7: Practice the Interview
A practice interview before the real thing is also a good idea. Get a friend or relative to play the part of the interviewer. It may seem foolish, but if you are not comfortable with an answer during the mock interview, it’s probably not the right answer. Work on it.
8: Ask Questions
It shows initiative and interest in the job if you ask your questions during the interview. Avoid asking about wages unless the interviewer brings up the subject.