As a recruiter or an employer, you are always searching for that perfect candidate. Sometimes, the sky opens up and they arrive at your office: early, well-dressed, and almost over prepared for their interview. And sometimes…..they don’t. Reed.co.uk interviewed over 200 employers and recruiters to find the most unusual interview stories. The results do not disappoint.
No shirt, no shoes…
As the old saying goes, you are how you look. Unfortunately however, some candidates underestimate the importance of appearance, and end up looking exactly what they are – unprofessional.
Some of your favourite interview fashion faux-pas included:
- The male candidate arriving to an interview wearing jeans and no top
- The female candidate offering to change shoes half-way through questioning (and then proceeding to take out the entire contents of her bag to show the extra shoes she had brought)
- A skype interview conducted entirely in pyjamas
- A one-eyebrowed applicant
- The candidate who incorporated ‘protection’ into their outfit (saucepan lids stitched into the lining of their overcoat). Yes, we’re confused too.
Our favourite? The gentleman who arrived at the interview wearing a fishing hat full of bait (N.B. he was not applying for a position at a tackle shop).
The nervous eaters…
Unfortunately, some people get a little peckish when they’re panicking. The most sensible applicants opt for a well-balanced breakfast before the big day to avoid the mid-interview rumbles. Then there are the less sensible options…
For some of you these options included:
- Someone pulling out a cereal bar from their bag when things got a little too much
- The liquid lunch interview (‘Am I allowed to order a beer?’)
- An impromptu interview picnic
- The interviewee who managed to take in a takeaway before turning up
Bringing the bestie…
To combat interview anxiety, some candidates turn to loved ones for some much needed moral support. Unfortunately, sometimes this is taken a little further than a pre-interview phone call or text message, and applicants actually bring their sources of encouragement with them.
Moral support for certain interviewees included:
- A candidate’s best friend
- Extended members of the family (including, but not limited to, aunts and uncles)
- Spouses (In one case, a man even took his wife into the interview with him. Unfortunately, she proceeded to answer most of the questions for him)
Our favourite? The applicant that brought their mum to the interview and left her in the lobby.
Finally, some your most popular gripes included:
- People asking for a cigarette break during proceedings
- Applicants arriving with no idea what job they’re being interviewed for
- People asking their interviewers out on dates
- People with personal space issues (including almost sitting on an interviewers lap by mistake),
- The candidate who left their headphones in
- The candidate who only spoke in rhymes
- The candidate who asked to borrow money
- The candidate who arrived in a dustbin lorry (no, really).
- Although in fairness to the latter, they were only hitchhiking.