Woman Waiting on Interview

Tips to prepare for your job interview

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You just received a phone call inviting you to be interviewed for that job at OSF HealthCare. Now what?

One word: Prepare!

What to expect

“Typically, you’ll have a peer interview, as well as a manager interview,” said Sarah Starling, a professional recruiter for OSF HealthCare in Peoria.

Depending on the department or unit you have applied to join, there also might be a third interview with additional management personnel.

The peer interview will be conducted by members of the team with which you’ll work if you’re hired. Manager interviews may include one or more people who fill supervisory roles, including your potential direct report.

If you have a friend or family member who works for OSF HealthCare, ask them about their own interview experience. If that person is familiar with the department in which you’re interviewing, ask specifics to better prepare your own questions about the job you seek.

Know the Mission and Values

The No. 1 piece of advice when preparing to interview: Know the OSF Mission.

“You have to be able to speak to the Mission,” said Michelle Earley, another professional recruiter for OSF HealthCare. “How will you contribute to the Mission? What do you bring to the table?”

That doesn’t mean you have to recite the 36-word Mission statement – although memorizing it might help build your confidence. But knowing that every OSF HealthCare employee is a Mission Partner who strives to provide “the greatest care and love” is vital.

It’s also important to pay more than lip service to the Mission. You should be prepared to explain why you are a good fit for this Mission-driven culture.

“When I interviewed, I looked up the Mission and made myself repeat it,” Sarah said. “I studied the Values, too. Knowing that those were personal values of my own helped me show my connection to what OSF is about.”

Interviewing dos and don’ts

Michelle and Sarah offer more advice on preparing for your formal interview with OSF HealthCare:

Dress professionally. “You don’t need a full-on suit, but first impressions are everything,” Sarah said. “Dress for the job.”

Woman Interviewing for a JobAnticipate questions you’ll be asked. Narrow your research to the type of job you seek. “Look up potential questions and think of answers and situations those questions speak to. Google, LinkedIn and Indeed are all good sources,” Michelle said. Dig into the osfhealthcare.org website, too.

Be truthful and real. “What stands out to me is people who are very genuine in how they answer,” Michelle said. “We will ask questions that could pull out something negative. We want to know how you overcame that.”

Don’t oversell yourself. Highlight your accomplishments, but don’t pretend you’re perfect. “Everybody makes mistakes. We want to know what you learned from your mistakes and how you handled those situations,” Sarah said.

Don’t talk too little – or too much. “You shouldn’t give two-word answers,” Sarah said. “If you can elaborate on an answer, you should. But don’t ramble on and on.”

Ask good questions. “This is your time to see if the job is a good fit for you as well,” Michelle said. “Ask about advancement opportunities and how you can grow. Ask questions that show you’re knowledgeable about the position itself and the organization.”

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About Author: Kirk Wessler

After being a writer for OSF HealthCare for three years, Kirk Wessler retired in January 2022. A Peoria native and graduate of Bradley University, Kirk's experience included working for newspapers in Missouri, Texas and the Peoria Journal Star.

Kirk and his wife, Mary Frances, have five sons, four daughters-in-law and nine grandchildren. Kirk plans to spend his retirement on the golf course, mastering the guitar and traveling.

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