Intended for healthcare professionals

Career Focus


BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 12 June 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:s233
  1. Rhona MacDonald, Editor of Career Focus
  1. careerfocus{at}

Last week we focused on organising and developing your CV, and this week we focus on the next step—interviews.

According to Mark Scoote and colleagues (p 233), the specialist registrar application process is one time when you have to put your own interests first: “You are competing against your peers for the security of your future career and all that entails.”

When the Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board becomes operational, hopefully it should solve some of the problems that doctors in non-training grades have if they want to further their careers. At the moment, getting through an interview for a specialist registrar if you are a staff grade or associate specialist is a tough ordeal, as Prithwiraj Saha explains (p 236). You should have a well rehearsed response about why you want to move from a non-training to a training grade.

Perhaps interviews are a waste of time? According to Chentil Kumar (p 235), the conventional face to face interview has already been replaced in successful organisations. He advocates using a combination of a validated, structured interview with psychometric tests as a better method of identifying talent.

We are looking to identify talent, but it comes on the back of some sad news: there are only five more episodes of our soap opera, Misplaced Trust to go. We want you to tell us how you think it will end—and we'll give £250 to the reader who comes up with the most imaginative ending. There will be no episode next week as it is our theme issue for overseas doctors, so you have until Thursday 24 June (the day before we publish the next episode, as we don't want to give you any hints) to come up with your ideas. Please email me at the address below with your entries. The author of the soap opera (Nicola Sharp) and I will judge them and announce the winner in the 24 July issue, when we publish the last ever episode. So let your imagination run wild.

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