What’s the most unusual thing a candidate did in a job
interview? Fall asleep? Disappear? Bring his/her mom? A
CareerBuilder.com survey of the most outrageous interview
mistakes candidates have made, according to more than 3000
hiring managers and HR professionals in the US, listed the top
ten job interview blunders as:
1. Candidate answered cell phone and asked the interviewer
to leave her own office because it was a “private”
2. Candidate told the interviewer he wouldn’t be able to stay
with the job long because he thought he might get an
inheritance if his uncle died – and his uncle wasn’t “looking
3. Candidate asked the interviewer for a ride home after the
4. Candidate smelled his armpits on the way to the interview
5. Candidate said she could not provide a writing sample
because all of her writing had been for the CIA and it was
6. Candidate told the interviewer he was fired for beating up
his last boss.
7. When applicant was offered food before the interview, he
declined saying he didn’t want to line his stomach with
grease before going out drinking.
8. A candidate for an accounting position said she was a
“people person” not a “numbers person”.
9. Candidate flushed the toilet while talking to interviewer
during phone interview.
10. Candidate took out a hair brush and brushed her hair.
In addition to the most unusual blunders, employers were
also asked about the most common and detrimental
mistakes candidates have made during an interview. More
than half (51 per cent) of hiring managers cited dressing
inappropriately as the most detrimental mistake a candidate
can make in an interview. Speaking negatively about a
current or previous employer came in second at 49 per cent
and appearing disinterested ranked third at 48 per cent.
Other mistakes included appearing arrogant (44 per cent),
not providing specific answers (30 per cent) and not asking
good questions (29 per cent).