Illustration of a doctor in an exam room working on a computer

Why this matters:

The primary responsibility of a physician is to assess patients, diagnose their ailments, and develop treatments according to their medical needs. This question will allow candidates to discuss their process for consultations. You will be able to then determine whether their methods and practices align with yours.

What to listen for:

  • A clear, organized method for prioritizing tasks and responsibilities
  • Demonstrated knowledge of how to evaluate, diagnose, and treat patients
  • An expert’s understanding of medical terminology and treatment methods

Why this matters:

Patient information is most commonly stored electronically. Therefore, it’s important and necessary for physicians to understand how to access and use the software that keeps data organized. A candidate’s answer to this question will reveal what kinds of electronic medical record software they’re familiar with and whether they’re open to learning how to use your organization’s preferred technology.

What to listen for:

  • Proven experience working with medical record software
  • Digital literacy skills and familiarity with current medical technology
  • Openness to learning new technology and receiving additional professional development 

Why this matters:

Physicians work alongside a team of other medical professionals who play a key role in treating a patient. It’s crucial that everyone collaborates to create the most effective and helpful treatment for the patient. Ideal candidates will demonstrate leadership qualities and be able to strategically delegate duties to other team members so that patients receive effective care.

What to listen for:

  • Clear, strategic thinking when distributing and monitoring a range of tasks
  • Willingness to partner with other medical professionals to provide the best medical care
  • Experience overseeing and managing a treatment plan

Why this matters:

When it comes to diagnosing patients, there can be a lot of room for interpretation. Misdiagnoses can occur, especially with regard to rare or complex conditions and intermittent or confusing symptoms. It’s important for a physician to expand the ways they can be effective, such as keeping an open mind for new information and insights.

What to listen for:

  • Humility vs. stubborn certainty
  • Steady confidence and ability to reassure
  • Openness to additional input

Why this matters:

The role of a physician is to evaluate and diagnose patients, and sometimes a diagnosis will be life-changing for a patient and their family. Physicians should be willing and able to facilitate difficult but necessary conversations. They must be able to communicate a diagnosis and the situation at hand, while also providing a strong support system.

What to listen for:

  • Empathy for patients and their families
  • Clear communication skills that build trust and reassure
  • Ability to facilitate effective treatment plans and create meaningful action steps

Why this matters:

Sometimes an emergency situation will call for a physician to triage or prioritize the injury, condition, or ailment of a different patient. This question will reveal whether a candidate can stay calm under pressure and make life-saving decisions when necessary, even when they are in the middle of less-urgent patient care.

What to listen for:

  • Ability to accurately triage
  • Quick thinking in unexpected situations
  • Calmness and steadiness under pressure

Why this matters:

Being a physician can be mentally, physically, and emotionally taxing — and require both patience and resilience. It’s important for a physician to live a healthy lifestyle, such as eating well, getting plenty of rest and exercise, and taking time to recharge. Great candidates recognize that stress often comes with the job, and they should have effective ways of managing it.

What to listen for:

  • Examples of when the candidate overcame stress
  • One or more effective stress management techniques
  • Acknowledgment that stress is a natural part of a physician’s role

Why this matters:

Great physicians understand that ideal patient care is a two-way street; they should encourage patients to ask questions and weigh in on their care. This question will give you more insight into a candidate’s bedside manner, including the ability to foster dialogue, field questions, and collaborate with patients on their care preferences, if any.

What to listen for:

  • A good bedside manner, including empathy, patience, and respect
  • Strong communication skills that help build rapport with patients and their loved ones
  • Willingness to foster productive conversations with patients

Why this matters:

Physicians have the ability to transform their patients’ lives with groundbreaking treatment and high-quality care. Regardless of a candidate’s key motivation for becoming a physician, it’s helpful if they find the role to be fulfilling and rewarding. This question will allow you to identify a candidate’s core values and what ultimately drives them to commit to this challenging and competitive field.

What to listen for:

  • A glimpse into the candidate’s work values and motivators
  • An answer that aligns with your organization’s core values
  • An abiding regard and admiration for the field of medicine
chatting over desk with laptops and coffee

Contact a sales specialist

By submitting this form, you agree that we may use the data you provide to contact you with information related to your request/submission and LinkedIn's products and services. If you are a LinkedIn member, you can control the messages you receive from LinkedIn in your settings. If you are a guest, you can unsubscribe from LinkedIn marketing emails at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the email. Your data will be used subject to LinkedIn's Privacy Policy.