Process of High-Level Executive Interviews

The candidate interview is a crucial step in the employment process in the healthcare industry, just like it is in most professions.

Employers need to know how to conduct interviews effectively for hiring managers and human resource staff to find the best applicants. Members of the hiring committee must explicitly grasp the best interview questions to ask as well as the best interview structure to use. Although there are many other interviewing methods, the structured interview is the most effective, particularly when evaluating candidates for a high-level post in healthcare administration. All respondents are asked the identical questions in this type of interview, which elicits all the information needed to select a suitable applicant. The following is an excerpt of a structured interview detailing ten questions meant to help interviewers select the most qualified candidate for a high-level healthcare administration position. The questions focus on healthcare laws and ethics, leadership skills and style, personal strengths and weaknesses, reflective practice, progressive discipline, and training and development.

Healthcare Ethics

Given that healthcare executives make decisions that have the potential to affect patients, staff, and communities, it is imperative that the ideal candidates understand and conform to the professional code of ethics. Healthcare ethics help executives to make efficiently address conflict and uncertainties in cases of competing values.

Question 1: What are your opinion on ethical workplace and business ethics? Noting that you have worked in multiple organizations and with people of different cultures, tell me an incident that you have challenged your response, and the outcomes ethically.

Question 2: Suppose you are probing a group of managers suspected of procurement fraud. During an interview, one of the suspect tells you that he can help you purchase drugs and equipment at a price lower than the current market value. What would you do?

Healthcare Law

Every stakeholder in the healthcare sector, from patients to employees expect executives to be conversant with current regulations that influence the industry. As Sørensen & Torfing (2012) notes, without healthcare law, not only would malpractices go unpunished but also lives would be lost.

Question 3: How has Medicare and Medicaid laws changed over time and what have been the effects on Americans? Would you propose any changes if you had the opportunity?

Leadership Skills

According to Weberg (2010) leadership entails a person’s behavior when governing the activities of others to achieve a particular goal. Naturally, modern hospital care is faced with multiple challenges including workforce demands, shifting consumer expectations, financial constraints, and demands to enhance patients’ experiences. Therefore, it is vital for high-level healthcare administrators to have excellent leadership skills.

Question 4: Give a short account of a situation which you interacted with people who were distressed, hostile, and difficult. Who were the participants, how did you resolve the issues, and what were the outcomes?

Strengths and Weaknesses

Given that the healthcare sector is multifaceted and with numerous stakeholders who have diverse capabilities, it is imperative for a high-level healthcare executive to acknowledge his or her strengths and weaknesses. Leaders should leverage on strengths while identifying new tactics to mitigate their weaknesses.

Question 5: Suppose I contacted your former project supervisor and subordinate staff members, what would they say are your greatest strengths and weaknesses? What unique qualities do you intend to bring to this position?

Reflective Practices

The dynamicity of the healthcare sector requires high-level officials to engage in a continuous process of learning. According to Weberg (2010) reflective practice entails giving vital attention to theories and practical values which inform everyday actions. An executive should reexamine practice reflexively and reflectively.

Question 6: Imagine that a very angry supplier comes to your office complaining that she has not yet received a check that you sent five days ago. She says she has not paid her bills and called you a liar. How would you manage such as circumstance?

Leadership Style

Individuals have different leadership skills that significantly determine the levels organizations’ success (Weberg, 2010).

Question 7: While giving an account of a time you played a leadership role in an organization, detail how you spearheaded the efforts? How did you relate to the employees and how were tasks completed?

Question 8: Is there a time when you participated in a forum where people had different objectives, approaches, and opinions but you managed to create an agreement and shared purpose? What was done? What was your role?

Progressive Discipline

A high-level executive in the healthcare sector must be able to deal with staff’s job-related behavior that is not on par with expected performance (Farndale, Scullion, & Sparrow, 2010). Naturally, the manager must be able to inform employees of a performance deficit and request them to improve.

Question 9: How do you communicate your dissatisfaction with a worker’s conduct or job performance?

Training and Development

Over the years, numerous scholars including Poksinska (2010) have emphasized the need for training and development in healthcare management. Training and development have the potential to enhance patients’ and employees’ experiences, reduce turnover, and increase productivity.

Question 10: Suppose that in a recent study, your health facility received a low score on patients’ satisfaction and showed high employee turnover, causing low profitability. What would you do to increase production?


For human resource managers to enhance efficacy in the hiring and retention processes and to guarantee compliance and consistency, it is imperative to identify the questions to be used by the interviewing panel. These queries should profile not only the post's responsibilities but also examine the candidates’ competencies. In a structured interview for a high-level healthcare administration position, it is advisable to ask questions that assess the candidates’ opinions on healthcare law, ethics, leadership skills, strengths and weaknesses, leadership style, progressive discipline, and training and development.


Farndale, E., Scullion, H., & Sparrow, P. (2010). The role of the corporate HR function in global talent management. Journal of world business, 45(2), 161-168.

Poksinska, B. (2010). The current state of Lean implementation in health care: literature review. Quality Management in Healthcare, 19(4), 319-329.

Sørensen, E., & Torfing, J. (2012). Introduction: Collaborative innovation in the public sector. Innovation Journal, 17(1), 1-14.

Weberg, D. (2010). Transformational leadership and staff retention: an evidence review with implications for healthcare systems. Nursing Administration Quarterly, 34(3), 246-258.

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