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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 12, 2004
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Bad Interview Stories?

    Anyone have any? I'm in the midst of job hunting right now, and interviews are just the worst!

    I have two recent ones:

    1.) This wasn't awful, just sort of inappropriate. I had sent in salary requirements for one job (which I hate) so they knew what I was expecting to make....the closing words of the interview were "Well, we like you, but the person before you said they'd do it for $14/hour, so go home and think about what you really need to make..."

    I was just like "Uhh...okay....thanks...."


    2.) I'm seeking jobs as a writer, and had one guy call me in for an interview and ask me what I thought my strongest skill was. Writing, of course, was my response, with lots of qualifiers about having others. He sat for a moment, and then said "Well that's funny you say that, 'cause your cover letter is one of the worst I've ever seen. Any response to that?"

    He wasn't joking either. Dead serious. For what it's worth, I've gotten lots of compliments on my cover letters and have written many for other people. Which was the gist of my rather shocked response. He ended the interview with "Thanks for coming in, but I'd never let writing like yours walk out the door with my company's name on it, so I don't think this will be a good fit."

    The kicker is, my current boss (who loves me and would hire me if the funds were there) sends him contract work all the time, and is rethinking that. He apologized to her a week later when they bumped into each other, but never bothered to send an apology my way..



    Ohhhhh job hunting!



  2. #2
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    Sep. 8, 2006
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GoForAGallop View Post
    He sat for a moment, and then said "Well that's funny you say that, 'cause your cover letter is one of the worst I've ever seen. Any response to that?"
    "Yeah. Why the f*ck are you wasting my time with this interview?"
    Everyone is entitled to my opinion.


    9 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
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    Dec. 12, 2004
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Windsor1 View Post
    "Yeah. Why the f*ck are you wasting my time with this interview?"
    That's basically my mental response. He's known for being an arrogant ass in the industry, but I mean, come on! HE called ME in! Based off said cover letter!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4

    Default

    You can see this for good interview tips



  5. #5
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    Jun. 7, 2006
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    Default

    My favorite was when I sat down at the table in an empty conference room, waited a while, first interviewer came in, sat down, chitty chat, second interviewer came in, also sat down and chitty chat, and then one of them said,

    "OK! Well, before we get started, we should probably let you know that we have already offered the position to somebody else. Is it alright with you if we still proceed?"



    .....ooooookay then.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
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    Apr. 2, 2003
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    4,704

    Default

    I had a bad interview once. Basically my mom ran into the vp of HR for this company and talked her into bringing me in. At the time I was just out of college with a biochemistry degree. This company brought me in, showed me around, then put me in a room and GRILLED me on analytical chemistry. My speciality was molecular genetics and protein research. My last analytical course was 2 years before. They kept letting me put my foot in my mouth, then correcting me, for up to an hour. I was literally sweating at the end of it, so I looked horrible as well. Needless to say I didn't get the job and I am glad because I wouldn't want to work anywhere that treated interviewees that way.



  7. #7
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    Apr. 28, 2008
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    7,284

    Default

    I have a few from the other side of the table.

    One interviewee basically refused to answer my questions with more than one word and then stopped me a few minutes into her interview and asked if I could escort her to the bathroom, because since I was a junior associate at the time "this interview didn't really matter." Needless to say, I passed on that feedback and she didn't get an offer, though she had impressed the senior folks and would have gotten one if she hadn't been a douche. However, if she was going to treat me like that, imagine the poor secretaries and paralegals.

    Then there was the recruiting party where a summer associate candidate asked the senior partner and senior associate if they were dating. Um, no. AWKWARD.

    I can't tell you how many people interview and say they are really interested in X type of work, which the firm doesn't do. At least take a second to review what the company does and act interested in it, please!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
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    Jul. 13, 2011
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    East Longmeadow, MA
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    Default

    I recall my interview for an associate attorney position (did get the job). Two senior partners took me out to lunch. Every. single. time. I had food poised to put in my mouth one or the other of them would ask me a question. I didn't get much eating done. I'm pretty sure they did that on purpose.
    What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
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    Sep. 8, 2006
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    Fredericksburg, VA
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    Quote Originally Posted by oliverreed View Post
    I recall my interview for an associate attorney position (did get the job). Two senior partners took me out to lunch. Every. single. time. I had food poised to put in my mouth one or the other of them would ask me a question. I didn't get much eating done. I'm pretty sure they did that on purpose.
    I actually think that would put me at ease. Remember the Seinfeld episode when George eats an apple to settle his nerves while asking a woman out on a date?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEHbQaOnnJQ

    You could go ahead and stick the fork in your mouth, and use a few seconds of chew time to formulate an intelligent response.
    Everyone is entitled to my opinion.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
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    Aug. 25, 2008
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    Florida
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    Default

    I had a pretty difficult interview for my current job. I talked about how interested I was in teaching online, and discussed current research I had done in online education, KNOWING that one of my interviewers was NOT a fan of online ed. But the position they wanted me for was heavily online, so what could I do? He grilled me horribly, and though I knew no one ELSE was going to answer any better, it was still a horrible experience. Another interviewer, while friendly, just seemed to spend the entire time trying to get me to stick my foot in my mouth (and he succeeded a couple of times, too!).

    I later found out that they had already made the hiring decision and that I could have pretty much gotten up on the table and danced, and that friendly guy was just amusing himself, which made me even MADDER. He and I get along just fine now, but still...he's an odd duck...



  11. #11
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    Jan. 4, 2005
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    Washington State
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    My favorite was when I sat down at the table in an empty conference room, waited a while, first interviewer came in, sat down, chitty chat, second interviewer came in, also sat down and chitty chat, and then one of them said,

    "OK! Well, before we get started, we should probably let you know that we have already offered the position to somebody else. Is it alright with you if we still proceed?"



    .....ooooookay then.
    Just call it practice.

    I have a story but my lunch time is over so I'll have to tell it when I get home tonight. It involves police.
    Crayola Posse - Pine Green
    RIP Whinnie Pine (June 4, 1977 - April 29, 2008)



  12. #12
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    Feb. 6, 2007
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    Default

    Not "bad" per say but in a recent interview one of the interviewers dropped the F bomb. It surprised me a little but I don't feel as though I let it show. He later explained that he did that because in the position you'll get yelled at a lot and verbally abused (people hate when tax investigators start asking them questions I guess) but still, the reaction in a job interview, which is formal and everyone is told to never ever curse in one, will be vastly different from when they're investigating someone and expect it.



  13. #13
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    Jul. 15, 2006
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    VA
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    In an interview for position that required outdoor work and some things simillar to the farm work I am the most familiar with I had an interviewer ask if you had to "stand the girl horse in a hole so the boy horse could reach". The other interviewer (who owned horses, and we had been having a lovely conversation to this point) looked like he may just fall over die.
    Railgirl.blogspot.com


    1 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
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    Jul. 22, 2007
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    Default

    Had an interview where the first person walked in and we started chatting. Second fellow walked in with an accordian file JAMMED full of resumes and proceeded to flip through them to find mine. Even asked me my name. He asked me why I wanted to work for them and I gave him my reply. By this time I knew the whole thing was a waste of my time and gas money so I decided to have a little fun and politely asked him, "So, let's flip this around. Why should I want to work for you?" He sputtered around a bit and really didn't have an answer.

    And it was a waste of my time and gas money, but at least I had a little internal giggle.


    5 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
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    Jan. 20, 2008
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    Default

    I went to interview as a runner for a law firm in college. I walked in, the guy came out of his office introduced himself, looked me up and down in a very inappropriate way and then led me to a desk. He told me to have a seat and wait a minute. I was there for 5 minutes and the phone rang, and he screamed out of his office, "GET THE PHONE"! Uhhh....ok.

    Then he comes out and hands me a legal document and tells me to correct it, put it in the proper format and get it ready for court. This would be all fine and well, if I was interviewing for a legal secretary or paralegal position, but I was there to be a runner.

    After that he called me in his office, asked a bit about me, and then asked if I had a boyfriend. Young and stupid I didn't think much of it, said I did, and that was the end of the interview. He never called me back, thank goodness.

    I did get a job at another firm, and man did this guy have a reputation. So glad I didn't get that job!
    Hope Blooming- Life with Chronic Pancreatitis

    My blog: Life with Pancreatitis



  16. #16
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    Feb. 18, 2011
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    Phillipsburg Ohio
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    Default

    I interviewed someone who answered the following:
    Q. what would your last boss tell me was your greatest strength?
    A. i get my work done very fast. all my orders go out faster than anyone else's.

    sounds good right?...except:

    Q. what would he tell me your greatest weakness is?
    A. well, i don't do it right.
    ~Former Pet Store Manager (10yrs)
    ~Vintage Toy Dealer (rememberswhen.us)
    Mom to : 1 Horse, 4 Dogs, 4 Cats, 1 Macaw, 6 (Former) Stepkids


    11 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
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    Default

    Two interviews stand out. One interminable one where the two people interviewing me were obviously my polar opposites politically. After an hour I ended that interview on my terms.
    Another for a tech support position. Bare interview room with 2 chairs. And 2 interviewers, one male, one female. Male interviewer sat on the floor. In shorts. Most of the questions seemed to be designed to determine how I handled stress, emotional and fatigue.
    I got the job. Worked for that company 9.5 years
    I wasn't always a Smurf
    Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
    "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
    The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.



  18. #18
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    Oct. 29, 2007
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    TN
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    I did a phone interview for an AmeriCorps-style position on a work crew doing environmental restoration. I knew they didn't pay a lot, but I just about hung up when Chipper Interviewer reeled off "So the living stipend is $X which I know isn't much for Seattle, but that'd qualify you for food stamps so that's another $200 a month!!"
    "Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out." ~John Wooden

    Phoenix Animal Rescue


    1 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct. 6, 2002
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    Philadelphia PA
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    Interviewing for a job as a summer associate with a big firm, the interviewer pulled a sandwich out of his POCKET mid-interview (and it was a very mushed and warm looking TUNA sandwich), unwrapped it, and began eating it OPEN MOUTHED. I was pretty disgusted and shocked but tried to keep cool. After a few bites, he put his FEET UP ON THE TABLE and finished the interview like that. It was all I could do to stop myself from getting up and walking out.

    I walked out thinking "was he trying to throw me off? Was he not taking this seriously because they had already decided against me?"

    Here's the kicker... I got offered a callback from the firm. I declined. I just couldn't handle the thought that even one person was so lacking in social graces. Ugh.
    ~Veronica
    "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
    http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/


    2 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
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    Mar. 10, 2007
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    Montana
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    I've been pretty lucky with my interviews-I'm trying to remember a bad one and I really can't, which is saying something because there have been many, many.

    I interviewed with a very very smart and quick guy last spring that felt like a friendly mental warfare, he was super sonic smart and just kept throwing things at me so I felt like I was in a intellectual tennis match. The job was a very challenging quick-on-your-feet and under pressure job (thank all that's holy that I didn't get it) so I know why he was like that-and then he would just STARE at me for my answer and do the "pregnant pause" thing to make me sweat... Asked me what I wanted for a wage and when I told him he paused, then laughed, and said quietly as if to himself... "it's so interesting to hear what people think they're worth..." Bland smile from him which I met with a single elevated brow and silence. Got through most all of the interview and he pulled something off my resume, from college-the English Lit degree-and hit me with it:
    "Favorite British author and WHY for the WIN!!!!" Took me out at the knees, I managed to pull something out of my hat, I think a few lines of Marvell's "Had we world enough and time..." and how it related... good heavens. He laughed and I did too, I remember it felt like I had just been on Jeopardy! I just missed getting hired, as he told me a few weeks later when we ran into each other on the street. They chose someone with more government experience than I had (it was a gov't job) and then three months later they tried to come back and hire me away from the job I ended up with. That was the funnest, though stressful, interview I ever had.



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