Veterinary Pathologist Interview Preparation Guide
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Veterinary Pathologist related Frequently Asked Questions by expert members with job experience as Veterinary Pathologist. These questions and answers will help you strengthen your technical skills, prepare for the new job interview and quickly revise your concepts

42 Veterinary Pathologist Questions and Answers:

1 :: Tell me what type of animals have you had as pets, and/or worked with previously?

We assume most people have experience with dogs and cats, but if your practice provides services to an assortment of “pocket pets,” (animals like hamsters, sugar gliders, etc.), you want to know the answer to this question. If you do see other species, it may be a big advantage if an interviewee has experience with reptiles, birds, etc.

2 :: Tell me if applicable, why did/are you leaving your previous/current position?

This is a good question for any interviewee, so we certainly want to ask it during interviews for a veterinary assistant. Build more specific questions off of their answer to this inquiry.

3 :: Tell us can you multitask?

This is essential to any position in the veterinary practice, but up front it must also be done while “on stage” in full view of the lobby audience, so the receptionist has to do it with grace. Give them a typical scenario: You are on the phone scheduling an appointment, you have a doctor waiting for you to bring back a chart, another phone lines start to ring and a client walks through the front door and comes to a stop right in front of you. What do you do? How do you prioritize these tasks in the heat of the moment?

Know what answer you want to hear. Perhaps it's, “I make eye contact with the approaching client and either mouth the words ‘I’ll be right with you,’ or hold up an index finger to indicate ‘just one minute.’ Then I put the second call on hold, finish the first, address the needs of the client in front of me, run the chart back to the doctor…” or however you would want them to handle the situation.

4 :: Please tell me how would you describe what you do?

In veterinary medicine you’ve got to do two things: you treat the animal, and then you’ve got to use psychology on the owner. Everyday I put up with people like that. And I make the joke that one end of the leash is easy to deal with. The other end of the leash is very difficult to deal with. If a person can’t deal with these individuals that are very demanding, that read the Internet too much, that think they know everything, if you can’t look past those people, and, bite your tongue at times, you won’t get very far.

5 :: Tell me how much money do you make as a veterinarian?

You know, in a single-man practice like mine that’s established, grossing a half a million dollars, is probably going to take home $100,000…..These multi-million dollar practices, multi-practice, some of them are making $250,000. But that takes a long time to get that and you have a lot of people working for you.

6 :: Tell us how much time off do you get/take?

Personally, all I take off is one week a year. And I’m not the normal. Most veterinarians today that go into a group practice, they will get probably a month off a year. I would say that’s going to be pretty well normal. But not for somebody that’s a single-man practice. You don’t get to take off a week here, a week there, you know. People get tired of you not being around and go someplace else, because it’s very easy for them to just go across the street or down the road. Here in this town we have seven or eight clinics.

7 :: Tell me do you love animals?

Although this may seem like a silly question, it really isn’t. At this point, you do not know this person’s motivation to become a veterinary assistant, or to seek out a job working with animals. You want to see their eyes light up when you ask this question, a smile come over their face as they remember the animals in their life, and hear them talk in a positive way about their own pets.

8 :: Tell me is there another position in the practice that you feel capable of filling, or hope to train for in the future?

You may have several different positions open in your practice, and you also never know when an opening might appear, so ask about other positions as well. You may also learn that this person is just hoping to get their foot in the door, and they really want to work in a different area at some time in the future. This may be just fine with you, or it may be that you truly need someone who will happily stay put in an assistant’s position for the foreseeable future.

9 :: Tell me why do you want to work in an animal-care facility?

A receptionist is well-suited to work at any type of front office, truthfully. The basic tasks — answering the phone, greeting clients, scheduling appointments, data entry — are all things that are done in many types of businesses. In fact, you should remain open to candidates that have front-office experience, just not in a veterinary practice. Find out what attracts them to a place where contact with animals is essential and expected. Nine times out of 10, they will simply reply, “I love animals,” but dig a little deeper, and find out what significance animals have had in their life.

10 :: Tell me what do they think are the most important “soft skills” for the job?

You are hoping to hear things like compassion, friendliness, empathy, active listening, multitasking and others that hopefully are listed on your job description as well. What type of person fits best at the front desk, and do they have those qualities?

There is perhaps no more critical a position to fill then one at the front desk. These team members are the first and lasting impression for every client that calls or comes in the door, so selection must be taken seriously. But also realize until you get them into the position and get a little training under their belt, it may be very difficult to know if they are a good fit. The front office is not for everyone, and you will likely know whether or not they will be successful within those first few weeks. Take that “introduction period” for all it is worth, and use that time to see if you’ve created a good fit. There is a saying that goes something like this, “hire slow, and fire fast.” Take your time with your interview process, but when your gut tells you it is not going to work, make a change. These people are too important to the practice and the team to not ensure a good match of person-to-position!