Same-Day Surgery Manager
Need to hire staff or get hired? Read on
By Stephen W. Earnhart, MS
Earnhart & Associates
Hiring staff is one of the most pleasurable and satisfying experience most of us do. It can also be one of the most frustrating. We have several facilities where we need to augment the staff at centers or hire for completely new facilities. I don’t know which I enjoy most. I think it is infinitely easier to hire 30 or 40 all new staff than it is to fill one vacant position.
Hiring en masse means you are filling a big bucket that needs to be ready to go by a certain date and you know that not all that are hired will make it. But you have time to make adjustments before you open the doors. The expectations are more realistic than filling a void of one or two individuals at one location. Not a lot of you will be hiring that many people at one time, so I want to spend more time this month on filling that one position in your department or surgery center.
I thought it would be helpful if I gave a few tips on getting hired and to look for when you are hiring. I have hired hundreds, maybe thousands of people in my career. FYI: My techniques are not always orthodox, but I do get results. Here are some insight from a non-professional interviewer and hirer:
• Wages and benefits.
Money isn’t everything in a job. It is, however, way ahead of what is in second place. I used to think that discussing wages and benefits at a first interview was inappropriate; now, I start the process with it. "Hi, I’m Steve Earnhart and we are interviewing you for a business office manager for our facility in Chicago. The position pays an annual salary of $42,500 and has full benefits, including a 401K plan. Would you like to continue the interview?"
If you are interviewing them, then they need to know what the job entails and pays. You know they probably are qualified after reading their resume. The only thing dangling is the money. Get it right out there from the start. It saves time and dancing steps.
Note, if you are being interviewed and the issue of money comes up, never, ever say to the person who might hire you that "I have a new car, and I have an apartment that is probably too expensive for me, so I will need a salary of $55,000 to cover my expenses." Don’t let the person interviewing you know you have little willpower or fiscal responsibility. They should not have to cover your poor financial decisions. I have never offered to cover someone’s debt via their salary. It should never come up.
• How many interviews?
Some managers think they need to have a minimum of two interviews before they hire. I’m not sure why that practice still is breathing. If the candidate presents because they are qualified; you like them, and they seem to like you; you agree on the terms; then make an offer! On the other side, if you are the person being interviewed and that situation happens, and you share their sentiment, take the job!
I don’t know why, but I am offended when, after I make an offer that I know they want, they then tell me they have to think about it. It is such a turnoff. That tells me that one, they have to take time to process before they make decisions. Great for some, but for me, not so much. Two, that tells me that they have other interviews, and they want to see what those are like before they make a decision. Turnoff.
In most positions in our field, the benefits are what the benefits are. I always am surprised when an interviewee challenges why an employer, say, doesn’t offer a retirement plan the first year. Arguing about it will never change it. Best course for the interviewee who needs a retirement plan is to wait until the end of the interview and thank them for their time. Then turn down the offer, if it is made, and tell them why.
• Tats and new body holes.
Tattoos and armor piercings are OK for some. Visible tattoos and piercings at an interview usually give a very negative first impression. Your works of art and metallurgy are not viewed universally as things of beauty to be shared with everyone you come in contact with. Remove them, cover them up, or don’t show up.
• Body language.
Google "body language" and follow these example of positive body language at your interview. Everyone who interviews knows that body language is a good way of judging a candidate’s interest or lack thereof in the conversation.
If you know your grammar is not the best, avoid speaking as much as possible. Bright eyes, nodding, and bobbing are acceptable forms of language to most. Smiling goes a long way with me.
The most glaring grammatical errors I hear are using double negatives in a sentence. Research it if you think you might use them.
You know what I mean. Lose it for 30 minutes. It will, however, trip you up after you get hired.
I never hired anyone who has issues with acting mature at an interview. Candidate who share gross jokes, are backstabbing previous positions or coworkers, wear inappropriate attire, or fail to stay focused have short interviews.
• Childcare issues.
No one wants to hear about your difficulties in getting a sitter so you could come in for the interview. That information is a red flag going forward.
• Parting shot.
If you want the job, let them know! This is not the time to try to be cool and detached. There is nothing wrong and everything right about telling the interviewer that you are deserving of the job, can handle it well, and will be successful at it. [Earnhart & Associates is a consulting firm specializing in all aspects of outpatient surgery development and management. Earnhart & Associates’ address is 238 S. Egret Bay Blvd., Suite 285, Houston, TX 77573-2682. Phone: (512) 297.7575. Fax: (512) 233.2979. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Web: