Lighter side: Interviews gone wrong

by Chloe Taylor06 Nov 2014
Interviews are unpredictable – candidates may surprise you, but not necessarily pleasantly.
HRM has selected some of the most entertaining experiences shared on a Reddit thread.
  1. Blockbusted:
“I used to manage a Blockbuster and after one particularly awful interview I walked the candidate out towards the parking lot and the alarms went off. It turned out he stuffed three DVDs in his suit jacket before being called back to the office.
He did not get the job. Or Mama Mia, Fool's Gold, or High School Musical 3 for that matter.”
  1. Traffic Light Conundrum:
“I was interviewing mechanical engineers for a junior position. Typically we will ask candidates about why or how they left their previous job. A common reason for people to quit is a lengthy commute. One particular candidate informed me that his current commute was too long. "How long?" I asked. "There are 37 traffic lights between my home and the office", he replies. "I see", says I. Then he continues unprompted "There are only 15 between my home and your office so that's much better".
I and the other hiring manager laughed our heads off after he left and called him back with a job offer that afternoon. He's a great engineer, too.”
  1. Helicopter Parenting:
“I was hiring for a technical position near London. I had one guy come in with an older gentleman. The interviewee was in his mid-30s, and the man with him was mid-50s. This person was apparently his dad.
The guy who was actually there to be interviewed never spoke, but the man in his 50s came in and the first thing he did was start trying to negotiate about pay. He'd come in on the assumption that of course his son was going to be hired, and now they just needed to hammer out the details on what his son was going to get in terms of pay and benefits.
I told them that if the older man was willing to wait outside he would be happy to restart the interview but since the interviewee's dad was not going to be working there he had no reason to speak to him. They declined this offer and left.”
  1. “I want to do nothing”:
“I interviewed a guy to work as a manager selling internet, home phones and mobiles. The job wasn't overly difficult but you had to memorise a lot of product information that was updated (or changed completely) on a monthly basis and impossible targets were expected to be met.
Anyway, a man came in and I asked him why he wanted to job. He said: Well I really just wanted something super easy where I could kind of do nothing. I mean you guys don't look like you work very hard. Also there are some hot chicks that work here and I'd like to get to know them.” I asked him what made him think that the job was easy, and he replied “well the thing is, I'm really f***ing smart.”
I literally looked around to see if I was on some candid camera show.”
  1. Hiring a “chaseir”:
“I wasn't the hiring manager but saw this particular application for a cashier position. They spelled the name of the town – where they live and the business is located – wrong. Under education they wrote: "high school but couldn’t get into collage", and in the spot where they had to write the name of the position they were applying for they wrote ‘chaseir’.”


  • by Deb 7/11/2014 12:37:49 PM

    The best one I have been involved in was a woman who was interviewing well for the position of our new bookkeeper. She finished the interview, then told a very off colour story about gay women - not realising that all but one of the interview panel was gay.

  • by Angela 7/11/2014 2:37:22 PM

    I recently interviewed a lady for a warehouse position. She finished the interview telling me she'd had difficulty in finding a position and wondered if it had anything to do with her teeth. she demonstrated by taking them out.

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