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Just had the worst job interview ever. Anyone else care to share?

(340 Posts)
EggNogRules Mon 26-Nov-12 13:01:57

I am morto blush and angry at myself. I was in and out in 20 mins shock.

I am used to initiating meeting with new clients and thought I had prepared well. I was so nervous, I had to keep drinking water to stop my lips from sticking to my teeth. It was all I could think about. None of the answers I prepared were useful. I need to rewind and do over because I have better answers now (after the nick of time).


NicknameTaken Mon 26-Nov-12 14:52:54

I've mentioned before the interview I did with a ring of toothpaste around my mouth (mirror steamed up after shower, somehow didn't encounter any other mirrors along the way).

Cynner Mon 26-Nov-12 14:54:33

I went to an interview and left feeling very confident I had the position.....until I realised my skirt was tucked up into my tights..I walked through the entire building and out to car park with my bum swaying in the breeze..

DumSpiroSpero Mon 26-Nov-12 15:00:30

Perhaps they thought you were great and didn't need any more convincing?!

My worst interview was for some local council/getting kids involved with democracy type role. The interview panel consisted of the current postholder, her manager and 4 teenagers aged from 14-19, it was hideous.

I'm normally ok in interviews apart from a nervous yawning habit which isn't ideal, but I go to pieces when I have to have appraisals at work, and am usually tearful before I even go in blush. I think I've had so many redundancies over the years that whenever I get in a room on a 1-2-1 basis with a senior colleague, a sub-conscious part of my brain always thinks the shit is about to hit the fan.

LaCiccolina Mon 26-Nov-12 15:01:02

I interviewed a girl for a temp secretary position in a bank. After intros and before my first question she opined that she was so glad for this temp position as she was "naff" with money and always ran out by the weekend. It caused issues as she loved clubbing you see (apparently) but wasn't it hard to come to work on Monday? Was usually Wednesday before she was any use.....

I just ceased the interview there.... I very much doubt u did worse than that....

IdaBlankenship Mon 26-Nov-12 15:01:15

I got into an argument with one of the interview panel in the middle of an interview once.. funnily enough I didn't get the job..

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 26-Nov-12 15:03:37

The worst interview I ever had was years' ago for my own job. Huge cost cutting and department changes meant redundancies so we were all asked to explain what we did and how our role was relevant. We had to prove we deserved to keep our current jobs. I feel sick just remembering. I was just married and we were about to buy our first house.

I felt I was in a daze and everything I knew and had rehearsed flew out of my head. My team leader said afterwards I'd been like someone in a trance. Think the pressure got to me but I scraped through.

Curtsey Mon 26-Nov-12 15:03:39

Oh, I had a really terrible one last year. I was pregnant at the time (didn't know it) and honestly it was like I walked into the room and was suddenly lobotimised. They asked me 'What do you know about our company?' and I went 'Um.....<long silence>.'
Didn't get the job, obviously, and in hindsight, so glad I didn't.

Gunznroses Mon 26-Nov-12 15:04:48

first interview after graduation, was for a IT helpdesk support roll, i wanted it so badly, imagine my delight when the agency told me i had passed the first interview and called back for second.

I arrived at the second interview all nervous but prepared, i was called in and i entered the room, the interviewer glanced up at me from his desk, said "hello" i said "good morning", no further questions were asked, next thing he said was "we'll be in touch" i left the interview room puzzled why i wasnt actually being interviewed, agency rang later to say i was unsuccessful! i can only guess he must have not liked my face confused..i have a nice face..honest

fedupwithdeployment Mon 26-Nov-12 15:05:43

I had a telephone interview once...I was prepared with notes, CV, computer on.....said hello, relaxed, leaned back and

CRASHED OFF THE CHAIR and onto the floor with a loud thump.

It was with a recruitment agent who put me forward for a job that I subsequently got. But I was blush at the time.

Yamyoid Mon 26-Nov-12 15:06:08

Ds was a baby and so dh took him to work while I went to an interview. Ten minutes after he'd left I realised I'd left my purse and phone in the change bag. I therefore had to walk as was going to get the bus. I then got lost and couldn't phone them to ask directions/explain my lateness. I remember changing my shoes on their doorstep and arriving totally dishevelled. I couldn't even explain as it sounded like a rubbish excuse. The interview lasted about 20 minutes and I (obviously) didn't get the job. To top it off, I had to wait in the neighbours' house afterwards as my keys were also in the bag. I was so embarrassed.

goralka Mon 26-Nov-12 15:06:12

wankbadger - did you get the job?

Curtsey Mon 26-Nov-12 15:10:42

Oh just remembered another interview, it was my 2nd or 3rd callback as part of a long interview process. It involved a video interview with a panel in the company's HQ abroad, but the technology had gone on the blink. I had to sit smiling in a seat for half an hour while local IT and HR became increasingly ranty and frustrated 'this keeps happening' etc. etc. and then when they finally got it set up, there was a hideous, truly hideous echo on the line. Everything I said sounded false and trite and was repeated back...back..back..I shudder even thinking about it. But I got that job!

MurderOfGoths Mon 26-Nov-12 15:13:13

I got a phone call from a potential job, which I took on my lunchbreak, the gyu on the phone was talking about when I could come in and said, "hopefully the rain will have eased off by then, I had to wade through knee high water to get to work this morning", I laughed and made some joke about needing a boat. I assumed he had a slightly weird sense of humour when he replied with, "nice to have some sympathy".

Finished my lunchbreak and went to serve the next client. Client started making small talk about the weather, how grim and wet it was etc, then casually remarked, "oh and of course <town name> is totally flooded" shock

Yep, you guessed it blush

I did get the job though, and apologised profusely for laughing!

Junebugjr Mon 26-Nov-12 15:14:20

I'm sure I had a job interview to be a MI5 spy once, or something like that.

I was unemployed for a few months once and was sending out applications for fun. I had call to ask if I could attend an interview with the ministry of defence at an army base miles away. I was informed vaguely that they were recruiting for a variety of positions after I queried what was the post.

Anyway I turned up, and got sent into a small bare room which had 3 officers in it with all medals and stuff on. At this point I started looking round for the cameras thinking it was some sort of pisstake.

I was asked loads of questions about my family, social life, past travelling experiences, so being a gossipy bubbly sort, I spilled my guts, and had a good old chinwag with them. They made some references about travelling and flexibility, confidentiality etc. Needless to say I didn't get the job, I got called and told my personality did not suit the job! They probably needed someone a bit less talkative, and could keep state secrets.

Gunznroses Mon 26-Nov-12 15:16:01

oh God ive just remebered another one! i had an interview for an IT manager role, i was chuffed! but couldnt get childcare for the interview date ds was about 11months old, i was really desperate, so i rang the company and asked if they would mind me bringing him along in his buggy, he would probably sleep through it. They were lovely and said no problem.

So i turn up on interview day with baby bag and buggy in tow, ds is excited about the "little trip" and quite chatty, no chance of sleep at all. The interview place was in some old medieval building it seemed with very low ceilings, part of the interview was to show me round the "network" which was in a basement, i couldnt stand up straight, and floors were all cobbled which meant buggy went bumpty bump all the way down, ds shrieking with laughter and me struggling to hear what the interviewer is saying.

At one point im asked "so will you be able to do this type of thing ? get down on your hands and knees and do the cabling etc through the walls etc ?" i'm saying "yes, yes" like a fool to everything trying to hold on to buggy which is now nose diving down the cobbled basement at alarming speed and trying to wrestle the baby bag strap which is about to strangle me round the neck... you should have seen the interviewers face!

I didn't get the job.

Hobbitation Mon 26-Nov-12 15:16:54

I've had a few where the interviewer was more nervous than I was and I had to encourage them a bit smile

In one interview I was asked a logic problem on the spot, and got it wrong, which apparently "Doesn't matter, I just wanted to know how you think"...then later he went on about my star sign "Oh I really like Virgos, they are great". I think he was just making it all up as he went along. I was offered that job but had already been offered another job and took that instead...

Graceparkhill Mon 26-Nov-12 15:18:21

I know someone who was so nervous that he left the room via the fire exit - setting off the alarm in the process.

He got the job.

I also know someone who misjudged the seat and sat on the floor- she got the job too.

Finally I interviewed someone who meant to say he had been receiving a "responsibility payment" for covering a maternity leave in xxx office.
What he said was he was "responsible for getting a girl pregnant in xxx office"
And yes- he got the job too!

BartimaeusNeedsMoreSleep Mon 26-Nov-12 15:21:01

I got through to my 5th and final interview with a company. It was with a big honcho and I'd been told by everyone that it was just a formality at that point and that it was more up to him to make me want to join them rather than the other way round.

First thing he said was, to be honest, I can't understand why on earth you've applied here, your CV is all over the place, none of your decisions make sense and I really can't see you here shock

I managed to stumble out a reply (thanking him for voicing his reserves and allowing me to address them!) got home and cried my eyes out for hours.

I got the job!

And now, after 5 years I'm going to be on the interview panel for young recruits and I am so nervous! (it's one to one interviewing). Doesn't help that it's in French. Am so scared. The only thing which is easy is that I have to test every candidates English [smile

I think I might have to test the interviews out on DH...

LindyHemming Mon 26-Nov-12 15:36:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MaMaPo Mon 26-Nov-12 15:37:52

I interviewed a really terrible candidate last week. Some tips for everyone:

- don't, when obviously failing to interpret some data presented in a vignette, say 'Oh, I'm a bit weak in that area but would get up to speed in a few days.' There is a whole 2 year POSTDOCTORAL course in that field - but you can get up to speed in a few hours?

- don't, when obviously knowing nothing about the legal requirements around a particular part of the job, say 'If I get the job I'm sure I can get familiar with the legislation.' You didn't think to research your own job before applying for positions?

- and don't, when asked how you resolve disputes with other team members, tell us some vague guff and then go on to tell us about all the disputes you had in an old job, but it was OK because you were the boss and therefore knew you were 100% correct and didn't have to listen to anyone else.

Shocker. She didn't get the job.

ProcrastinatingPanda Mon 26-Nov-12 15:40:04

I had an interview once in retail. It was going really well, they were really impressed with my answers and seemed quite keen. They mentiined something about me seeming like a people person so would get on with the customers at the end of the interview, then for some reason I'm still kicking myself for I replied with "oh no, I hate the public." shock

LadyArtois Mon 26-Nov-12 15:41:31

I applied for a receptionist job when I was an apprentice and was really nervous. It was all going really well, but then I came on my period right there and then in the bloody interview!! I could actually feel it! Talk about off-putting!

I got offered the job, but turned it down as an amazing job came up that I wanted to apply for instead. I went for that interview 12 weeks pregnant and got it grin

Flosshilde Mon 26-Nov-12 15:42:43

One of my interviews just went from bad to worse.

On the walk to the tram, I got something behind my contact lense and one of my eyes started absolutely streaming, making all my mascara and makeup run. I had nothing to fix it with, so had to try and even it up by desperately scrubbing at my makeup to get it off, along with the other eye. This classy operation was carried out in Starbucks toilets with spit and loo roll. I looked less of a fright when I'd finished but still not particularly good.

Then when I got there, I kept trying to walk through the wrong door.

Then I was asked some of the most horrendous questions ever. Really hard. I had a crack at them but kept drying up. This was made worse by the fact I was already holding a job offer for not quite so good a job where I had sailed through the interview so struggling so badly (and I had prepared thoroughly) was a massive shock.

To top it all off, the job description had a bit of an ambiguous part in it about duties so I asked for clarification at the end. Obviously they didn't think it was ambiguous and gave me hmm looks all round.

I have (thankfully) successfully passed two interviews since and am now more often the interviewer than the interviewee. Asking for the question to be repeated doesn't lose you marks - I'd rather you did that and answered well than didn't and answered badly. Asking intelligent questions at the end always gives you a chance to shine as well as it can turn into a discussion.

LadyArtois Mon 26-Nov-12 15:44:03

That might sound weird..

The job I really wanted was open for a long time and took forever with interviews, that's how I had the time to get 12 weeks pregnant!

DownTheRabidHole Mon 26-Nov-12 15:47:55

The man interviewing me was utterly vile. There is a word to describe my function at the time which is the same as a famous "perfume shop". The fuckwit thought I meant I'd worked in a fucking make-up shop.

I ended up crying, he shouted at me and as this was a financial institution you couldn't get anywhere without card access so I couldn't get out. I was trying to walk out but he wouldn't swipe me out of his office until I'd stopped crying.

Didn't help my self-esteem much that one. sad

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