Hiring Managers Break Down The Weirdest Things They've Ever Seen In A Job Interview

Most of us have had a few jobs in our lives, and we've learned to be on our best behavior during the job interview.

But sometimes even when we're doing our best, we might make a mistake, like blanking on the answer to a question or spilling coffee on our pants.

There are other people out there, however, with far stranger stories.


Curious, Redditor Muchachi asked:

"People who have interviewed potential new hires, what are some of the weirdest or worst things you've encountered during the interview?"

Unending Surprises

"A woman handed in her resume in person (this is an important detail for later). She seemed normal enough, looking for a part-time job. She was new to the area and was checking out opportunities. This is a grocery store she was applying to."

"She called me the day before, panicking and asking for directions to our location. It didn't seem like she knew she was talking to us as she was asking for directions to the store. (Now she was here yesterday, dropping off her resume.)"

"She called to say she was going to be late, because she forgot about an appointment."

"She called to reschedule the interview for the same time and day as the interview. She seemed to think it was a different day."

"She called asking which bus to take to the interview."

"She called to reschedule again."

"She showed up four hours early, wearing two different shoes."

"Each time she called she sounded more and more drunk. It was sad. She clearly needed help."

- Optimal_Sleep_2789

About Those Random Drug Tests...

"I used to be the hiring manager for a store in a mall. Our back room was pretty tiny, so we did interviews in the food court. Usually, it was pretty empty when it wasn't around lunch or dinner time so it wasn't hard to find a table that was far enough away from everyone else."

"I was midway through interviewing someone when I saw a girl I didn't recognize walking towards us."

"She came over, sat down with us, put a little white pill on the table, and said, 'Take this pill' to the guy I was interviewing."

"Then she asked if I wanted one without actually saying what it was."

"When I said no, she started asking how I knew her friend. I told her I worked at a store and was interviewing him for a job, and she just said, 'Oh cool,' and just continued to sit there."

"It took a few minutes for the guy to get it through to her that we weren't friends who met during an interview but that this was the interview that she had crashed. Once she finally got it, she picked up the pill, got up, and wandered away."

- AmyHeartsYou

One-Way Ticket to Amazon

"Interviewing for student workers at a College Bookstore. So we got a pretty wild variety of characters, but none like Lorenzo."

"This dude comes walking into the interview in some tattered cargo shorts, a dirty White Tee, some flappy broken sandals, long mangy hair, and a scraggly beard. But the best part was the gourd. He had a good-sized gourd hanging from a hemp necklace around his neck that he was using for a water bottle."

"Now the Assistant Director and I both have a pretty solid sense of humor, and we know this interview is going to be special."

"We began asking him all the usual questions. Why do you want to work here? What were your favorite past jobs? All of which he answered really well, far beyond our expectations."

"At the end, we always had a fun question in there as well. We asked Lorenzo if he could go anywhere right now, where would he go."

"He passionately said, 'AMAZON! I would go to the AMAZON!' and got up and started dancing around the office. 'I'd go do a rain dance in the rain forest! Man, I wanna go so bad!' And then he pounded the gourd."

"Best interview ever."

"Sadly, our Executive Director flat out NO'd Lorenzo. The AD and I were tragically disappointed. We really wanted to give him the job, just to see what happened. He became a bit of a campus legend, and we really did regret not being part of his journey."

"Rumor has it that after graduation, he boarded a plane to South America and was never heard from again. Dance on, buddy! Dance on!"

- Centumviri

Emotional Intelligence

"Crying. She explained that she just cries sometimes for no real reason and I accepted her explanation."

"She was a good hire. I would swing by her office and sometimes she would be in there crying and working away."

"She was a graphic designer, this was at a design firm, and she was referred by someone I trust...12 years on, she has three kids and is doing good."

- seemooreglass

No Wrong Answers... Apparently

"I wasn't on this panel, but an older man being interviewed responded to two of his questions with 'That's a stupid question' and 'You tell me, you work here.' Needless to say, he didn't get the job."

"Another man bought lunch at the time of his interview and then complained he was being disturbed when someone went to call him through."

"Entitled weirdos."

- anybloodythingwilldo

Company Relations

"I have so many."

"One of my favorites was an early morning interview at a large job fair the company I had just been hired to was hosting at our local convention center. This candidate has been there the night before and completed her application and some assessments and was asked to come back in the morning to interview."

"She was DRUNK y’all. Not hungover. Hiccuping, slurring, stinking drunk. She tried to hug me rather than shake my hand."

"It was another woman and I doing the interview. She asked the candidate why she had left her last job and she said, 'Well, it’s like this, ya see. . . Me and my old man, we was getting a divorce (hiccup)... So then I started sleeping with a whole bunch of guys at the office. Then me and my old man? We got back together, and now I’m not allowed to work there no more.'"

"Oops."

- dontmesswithtess

Date For Hire

"I worked in HR (Human Resources) for a long time. I was usually the first person new hires went through for admin jobs."

"I interviewed one guy who was creepy beyond words, winking at me, biting his lip."

"At the end, he said, 'Well, I’m pretty sure I blew this interview, but would you hire me for a date?' I told him he has 30 seconds to leave before security was called."

- -allnighter-

Waiting Room Drama

"While waiting for her interview, I had a lady get into an argument on the phone with her roommate about leaving her sex toys in the dishwasher."

- AlexatRF21

History Repeating Itself

"I was interviewing someone who casually mentioned that one of their dogs had died after being left in the car during her work day. She then went on to ask if we have a place where she could keep her dogs at work."

"We do not, to which she replied that that’s ok, they could stay in the car."

"We were hiring for a dog trainer position."

- squarebeardoesntmind

Helicopter Parents

"I had a 24-year-old, college graduate, come into the interview with her father. I had multiple interviewees, so when I called her name and they both stood up, I told him it wasn't a group interview and he'd be in when his name was called."

"He looked at me and said, 'I'm her father. I'll be sitting in on her interview.'"

"I looked at both of them and said that wasn't happening, and he was not welcome to join us in the interview room unless he was an applicant on my list."

"He literally took her by the hand and walked her out. That was eight years ago or so, and I still think about that poor woman. I was 25 at the time and couldn't imagine that being my life."

- evanjw90

Brief Employment

"The one that stands out the most to me was hiring for a new computer tech. Was a nice guy, and seemed to know the basics but was clearly new to the field. When I asked if he had any questions for me his first one was, 'What is the process for transferring to a new position? I'm only applying here because there aren't any openings in accounting.'"

"Umm, yeah, dude... Tell me right away you don't really want that job and don't intend to stay at it. I just looked at him blankly for about 15 or 20 seconds and I think it dawned on him what he just did."

"The interview basically ended there and I thanked him for his time and said I wouldn't be calling. I hope he learned from that."

- cyferhax

Not a Team Player

"I was interviewing a graduating senior for an entry-level designer position, a position that would have required her to work closely with a writing partner and less directly with an entire team."

"I asked her how she approached working in teams and she said, 'Oh, I hate working in teams. Every time I do, everyone ends up ganging up on me, so I want to work alone here.'"

"Might as well have just ended the interview then and there because that's not and never will be how advertising works."

"I pointed out her portfolio and asked her how she'd created those pieces. Hadn't she worked with a writer on the headlines or the body copy?"

"She said no, her professor let her do everything herself because she'd told him she 'refused to work with anyone.'"

" I can't remember what school she went to, but they did her a massive disservice by letting her think that was normal."

- ostentia

At Least They're Honest

"Not an interview, but yesterday I received a resume that said, 'I really think it's time for businesses and companies to change the way they hire everyone. I have been out of work for over four years already and it's getting ridiculous. I may have not grown up in [redacted] but I am more than qualified for all the jobs I applied for.'"

- Sspalding91

Gotta Keep Up the Gym Habit

"Not majorly weird but always stood out to me:"

"I was on the interview panel with the owner and project manager as I was in charge of training new hires."

"A guy came in wearing skinny jeans and skater trainers. Already, I know the owner is annoyed because he's a stickler for the dress code (shirt, trousers, shoes) in the office."

"His CV said he's already experienced in what we do so we asked him some basic questions about the work he's done and he gave some vague answers that didn't really explain anything or indicate any real experience."

"Partway through the interview, the owner said that I'd be training him should he be successful, and he very obviously sneered and rolled his eyes."

"At the end of the interview when asked if he had any questions, he said he likes going to the gym so he'd like two lunch breaks because of the amount of food he needs to eat and also to actually get to the gym. The owner says we can discuss that if he's successful."

"The project manager and I didn't want him but the owner said we should invite him back for the second stage competency test and asked if I could contact him because he noticed the eye-rolling."

"The owner also made a comment about him being scruffy and told me to make sure he comes dressed for work."

"I invited him back and told him exactly the sort of thing he was expected to wear."

"He turned up a week later wearing the exact same stuff from his interview. It was clear during the (quite simple) competency test that he'd barely done this type of work before, if at all."

"He also turned up with two large tubs of pasta for the competency test and stopped partway through to eat one of them despite only being there for two hours (which was supposed to be an upper limit)."

"I asked him at the end if he had any questions and he asked what other responsibilities I had because I obviously wouldn't need to spend much time training him. I sidestepped that and he repeated the question about two lunch breaks."

"The owner phoned him the next day to tell him he wasn't successful and he offered his services on a freelance basis for both work and training, even sending a follow-up email offering the same thing a few days later."

- TheTrueBobsonDugnutt

The Beginnings of a Parasocial Relationship

"I interviewed this lady who seemed okay, but we didn't hire her. Then she kept emailing me, asking questions about the job (after she knew we hired someone else), and then she emailed me asking to meet up and 'hang out.'"

- bigtex2003

While we may have made some mistakes in our interviews, these deeply cringe-worthy accounts are bound to make us feel better about the slip-ups we may have experienced.

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