- The Net's Premier Resume Writing and Editing Service
With the painstaking preparation that goes into preparing
for an interview and the tension often felt when the hour
has come, it can be difficult to maintain a sense of levity
in the process. Still, you are not the only person to
suffer a faux pas or awkward moment during an interview.
Perhaps you said or did something wrong. Perhaps your
interviewer was bizarre. Perhaps something just felt weird.
Maybe it is Murphy's Law or perhaps it is just par for
the interviewing course. Take comfort from these stories
gleaned from the collective experience that is interviewing.
"I was part of a
team of eight colleagues who interviewed 50 people in
the space of two weeks. Four to seven people conducted
each interview, which occurred in a small room. We were
stuck in that room for hours. One of the questions designated
for me to ask was what the most formidable challenge
the person had ever gone through. During one particular
interview in which four of us met with the applicant,
she began to share her most significant challenge when
the Director intervened with a follow-up question, interrupting
my chain of questions. Apparently I made an odd face.
My colleague saw me and began to giggle. Then two of
us began to laugh, and we could not stop. At one point,
the first colleague tried to disguise his laughter by
blowing his nose, but this just made everyone else laugh
more. All the while, the interviewee elaborated on the
most difficult challenge she had been through, maintaining
solid eye contact with the Director. It was both equally
funny and horrifying that we were laughing. Soon the
Director said to her: I think we need to ask you to
leave until we compose ourselves."
"The summer internship
organization to which I applied had about ten of us
come at once, but they interviewed us individually.
My meeting was towards the end, so I waited there for
an hour before the two interviewers called my turn.
They said: we have three questions that we are going
to ask you at once, and you can answer the three questions
in order at which time we will be done. They told me
the three questions, and I answered the first. Then
they looked at each other and said, 'Okay, that will
be it.' Surprised, I asked, 'Well, do you want me to
answer the second question?' They kind of looked at
each other and said, 'Well, okay.' I answered as briefly
as possible, skipped the third question altogether,
and left. I got the position."
"I sent a digital
resume and cover letter via email to apply for a position
as a technical writer. Within a few hours, a message
from the director in charge of hiring came via email.
Full of anticipation, I opened the email to find a terse
message: 'your resume is infected with a virus and has
been quarantined.' A person cannot recover from an infected
resume. I did not pursue the position further."
"At one rather intense
interview with a high powered man, the phone kept ringing
and interviewer took the calls long enough to say that
he would call the people later. He seemed to be telling
me that I was a nominally important use of his time
or at least demonstrating how busy he was. There was
some kind of odd power dynamic going on. Then he got
another call, which was clearly from his wife. After
saying, 'Hi, Honey,' my interviewer only said three
cryptic things: 'is he lucid?,' 'do you need me to come
home tonight?', and 'call me when you know more and
can tell me what to do.' Then he hung up the phone and
looked at me."
"I once interviewed
a woman who came in ringing her hands. I asked her the
standard interview questions: what are you looking for
in a job, what don't you like in a job, what do you
need from a boss? To the third question, she replied:
'I need my boss to be my best friend. I'm so lonely.
We just moved here a few months ago and I haven't made
any friends. I need a friend.'"
"A man walked in
and deemed himself the right man for the job I had advertised,
even though he did not fit in any sense of the word.
After the interview, which highlighted how badly he
and the position matched, he started an email campaign.
Another man wrote to me on his behalf. Between the two
of them, I received at least twenty phone calls and
electronic messages: he wanted the job so badly, would
I please reconsider? The barrage of follow-up finally
waned when I hired someone else, but even then his advocate
kept scolding me for hiring someone else."
"I had to undergo
a ludicrous 500 question psychological examination when
I applied to be a security guard during college. Among
the 500 questions were about 17 questions asking me
in slightly varied ways whether or not I have ever thought
of killing myself. If the exam had not been a scan-tron,
I would have answered, 'No, but the idea is growing
on me every time you ask.'"
"During a particular
interview, the interviewer had a dog present. The dog
became especially interested in my leg. I kept shuffling
and moving to protect myself from the dog, but the person
giving the interview took no notice of the dog at all.
Uncomfortable as this was, I was actually wondering
if it was some kind of test to see if I could maintain