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Interviews Gone Wrong

28 Feb 13:00 by James Roberts

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As a recruiter, when you find (what you believe to be) a great candidate and you get to the stage of putting them forward with your hard-earned client you generally expect a few things from them:

  • Well groomed
  • They’ve done their homework on the company that they’re interviewing with
  • Smartly dressed
  • They’ll turn up on time
  • Have some great questions planned to as the interviewer
  • Etc etc

However, this isn’t always the case. Recruitment is a sales role and the product that we sell is the most unreliable product in existence, people.

Having been running since June 2015 we’ve now had well over 1000 interviews take place in that time and have had some interviews go fantastically well and some take a turn for the worst.

Here’s a few of our worst stories to date.

  • Not one of our own candidates but at a group interview that one of our consultants was sitting in on there was a lady that was dressed in a manner that can only be described as ready for a night out in a hot sweaty climate. This lady was asked the question ‘what is the best skill that you posses that you can bring to the role’ she promptly stood up, leant over and started swinging her hair round in a big circle. Apparently, the room was completely silent for a good few seconds after the performance. This was for a position within the care industry.

 

  • We once had a guy that went to an interview for a sales role. This was an office-based sales role for a high value product. A very ‘well to do’ company that expected a lot from its sales consultants and in return would give them a very handsome salary and commission package. The guy that we found was a great fit for this role and was super excited for the opportunity. The interview took place, the candidate called after and said he wasn’t too sure how it went as he couldn’t really read the interviewer. We later spoke to the client who promptly told us it was a no from them, apparently the candidate was wearing what could only be described as bowling shoes with his suit, he was chewing gum for the entire duration of the interview and when the client walked into the reception to meet the candidate he was stood there for over 10 seconds after introducing him self whilst the candidate was finishing off the article he was reading in the paper. All obvious points not to do. If it hadn’t of been for these, he would have been in with a chance of a second stage interview.
 
  • In the early days of Quad Recruitment, we once had a lady go for an interview with one of our Healthcare clients. (One of our best clients to this day) She got to the location of the interview where there was a barrier to enter the car park, all she had to do was press a button and asked to be let in for her interview…………………………………………………… Unfortunately, the barrier didn’t make it. Whether she slipped on the pedals or was just a bad driver we don’t know. She drove into the barrier making a terrible mess of it and I imagine her car bonnet. The call that we had from the client was accompanied by the CCTV clip of her driving into the barrier and then reversing back out and away from the interview location. She was never heard of again and we were blocked from her phone.
 

The above 3 are just a few of many that examples of tragic interviews that we’ve had. We’ve got many more instances of things going wrong or perhaps turning up to an interview wearing inappropriate clothing. We once had a girl come in to us wearing fluffy flip flops. We have an office dog and he was very happy with this. We also had a lady attend a group interview who told us that there was another lady in the group who wouldn’t stop picking her toe nails and dropping the scraps on the floor. I believe she was asked to leave.

If you have an interview set up by a recruiter, just listen to what advice they have for the day and try to stick to it as best as possible, they're there to help and do this professionally.

If you’ve got any stories that beat these we’d love to hear them.