17 Strange Things Candidates Have Done At Interview

Published on: 8 Sep 2017

candidates at interview

We finally seem to be seeing the last of the summer and recruitment has started ramping up again, evidenced by an increase in roles on OnlyMarketingJobs.com and also by a flurry of fresh vacancies on social media. To pay tribute to the job market finally waking itself up, we reached out to the Hiring Managers of LinkedIn for their best 'candidate-in-an-interview' stories. Candidates, please take these stories as advice on what NOT to do in an interview, and Hiring Managers, we hope this reassures you that it's not just you who suffers with the World's most awkward interview moments. Check them out: 


'A candidate telling me face to face they didn't really want the job!!!! This cracked me up.'



'Not me directly, but early in my career I sent a candidate for an interview and he offered to arm wrestle the interviewer for the role. He got the job! It was back in the day, it was a simpler time.'



'At my last company, we were recruiting for a Country Manager for Ireland. It was indeed a hot summer's day in Shannon, but the candidate turned up for the interview in Panama hat, Hawaiian t-shirt, shorts and sandals. A role paying in excess off 200,000 euro, and he turned up in shorts and sandals.'



'Being asked if we paid expenses for their daily commute to work!'



'I know someone who offered a candidate a drink and they asked for a g&t. It was an interview for a bar role but still...'



'One of my candidates ran a cab and had the cab driver go in to the interview asking for payment!'



'A girl I interviewed applied with someone else's CV and during the interview couldn't answer a single question about her history. She didn't even bother to read it.'



'In international recruitment where most of my relationships are built on telephone conversations and trust, I once sent a candidate for a face-to-face interview for a job that involved some customer facing work. My candidate turned up which was a good start, but he was unsuccessful because of some VERY inappropriate tattoos (think phallic symbols and words that make you shudder) and piercings that could only be covered up by wearing a balaclava. Lesson learnt, never be afraid to ask the questions you don’t want to hear the answer too and try to ask for a scanned copy of their passport ‘as part of the process.'



'Once had a candidate show up visibly drunk for a full day of interviews with me and some company execs. That was an interesting 15 minutes.'



'Would like to add candidates that don't do their "company research" prior to an interview - this shows an immediate lack of interest.' 



'Had a candidate who, when asked about his hobbies, answered 'drinking' and then went on to expand on this and wasn't joking! He's probably still complaining about how he didn't get the job.'



'I used to work for an advertising company and since the there wasn't an office in the city I was recruiting for (field sales job) I met a candidate in a hotel cafe/bar to do the interview. The waitress came over and I ordered a sparkling water and he ordered a pint. Not so many points on the interview front but obvs gained some lad points!'



'Once received a CV which included the hobbies and interests of "drinking and womanising". Charming.'



'I'm not a hiring manager, but had to step into an interview role for a bit. I had one girl who wouldn't stop chewing at her hair.'

(Couldn't find a gif of someone chewing their hair but this one really gets me.)



'Once interviewed a potential retail management trainee who replied to my question "why should we hire you?" with the question " Ahh. Why shouldn't you hire me?" In fact the whole interview seems like a series of responses that were enquiries.'



'Not too long ago, I sent a candidate for an interview in our London Office and told him to report to reception. The HM contacted me later on in the day to tell me the candidate was a no show. I phoned the candidate to ask why and he told me he arrived at reception, took a seat, waited an hour but no one came to collect him. He didn't think about reporting in to the receptionist!'



'Had a candidate once who didn't know answer to a question so she jumped across the table grabbed her resume and ran off....straight out the office.'

For more interview tips, career advice and marketing jobs take a browse of the site. Whether it's marketing jobs in London, communications roles in Manchester or digital vacancies in Leeds, we've got something for you!