12 Interview Questions When Hiring an Optometrist

Posted by Janelle Pauli on Wed, Nov 21, 2018 @ 11:11 AM

We know how important it is to hire the right people in your optometric practice. This becomes even more important when you're looking to hire on another OD in your office.

While every role on your team is valuable and important, bringing on a new OD requires more specific questions in order to find the right cultural and technical fit for your office.

We've spent some time on the blog in the past talking about interview questions to ask when hiring for different positions in your practice, and today we want to share some of the important questions to ask when bringing a new OD into the picture. 

12 Interview Questions For Your Next OD Candidate

Tell me about your most memorable patient.optometric practice hiring

This is a good ice breaker question to get started with. It should be a fairly simple question to answer and will give you insight into what they learn from patient visits.

What are you clinical strengths?

Learning what strengths a candidate has will help you decide if they are a good fit for your practice. Do their strengths compliment yours? Will you be able to work together to provide a wide scope of patient care?

What area of optometry do you enjoy most?

Hopefully you don't get a canned generic answer like, "helping people". This question can help you determine where the OD will fit into your practice and if they will be able to spend time focusing on the things that they enjoy most about optometry.

Provide an example of a conflict and resolution with a patient or colleague.

Understanding how a candidate recognizes and resolves conflicts with others is important. As an OD, they'll be expected to be a leader in the practice and will need to be able to work well with everyone in your office, and with patients.

Ask their go-to CL fit and why to get a sense of their philosophy.

Depending on the needs of your practice, understanding an OD's philosophy and how they manage patient care is an important piece in understanding how they'll fit into your practice. In some cases you might be looking for an OD that shares similarities with your own philosophy and in other cases you might be looking for someone to compliment yours. 

What do you do with your free time when the schedule is light? 

Bringing on another OD to your practice means you'll also need to bring on new patients to keep the schedule full. This will help you get a good sense of the OD's business mentality outside of patient care. Having someone that brings creative business ideas to the table can be a big asset.

How do you see yourself fitting into this practice?

This question will help you learn what the candidate already knows about you, your practice, and your patients. It is good to learn how they think they'll fit into your practice before you tell them how you think they would fit.  

What would your co-workers tell me is your worst trait?

Hiring someone with the right personality traits that will mesh well with your current team is important. A good candidate will be self-aware enough to know their flaws, but also make strides to correct them.

In what areas do you want to pursue further training? What CE courses have you taken in the last year?

Having a good understanding of where an OD has interest in growing their skills and career will give you assurance that they are committed to the profession and have a passion for growing their skills further to help develop the practice and business as a whole.

What resources do you need to be successful?

Knowing what equipment and software the candidate is most comfortable using, and knowing what they need in order to get their job done will help you know if your practice's systems and tools will be enough for them to accomplish their goals.

What do you see yourself doing in 5, 10 years?

Long term career goals are important to know when hiring for your practice. Is the OD looking to open their own practice any time in the future? Would that affect your decision to hire if they have aspirations outside of your practice? Depending on where you are in your career and your business these long term goals could affect the fit for your practice.

Are you interested in eventual partnership or ownership? How soon?

To take the previous question a little bit farther, and depending on if this question fits into your business, knowing a candidate's thoughts on future partnership or ownership with our practice could make this a later discussion down the road. 


Hiring, training, and managing staff in your practice is always a big task. Read our ebook on staff management to improve your processes and practice culture.


Editor's Note: This post was originally published on April 10th, 2017. It has been updated for relevance and richness of content on November 19th, 2018.

Tags: Staff Management

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