Tag: interview

Here are 13 of the strangest, toughest job-interview questions people in Britain have been asked


Job interviews are a nerve wracking experience at the best of times. You want to put the best of yourself across and ensure that you get the job.

Interviews can get even more stressful if you’re thrown a really tricky, or slightly weird question by your prospective employer. But what sort of strange questions do people get asked?

To find out, Business Insider looked to Glassdoor, the job and careers marketplace. Glassdoor picked out some of the hardest and strangest questions asked by employers in the UK.

Explaining why employers ask tricky, off-the-wall questions, Susan Underwood, Glassdoor’s Head of Global Recruiting and Talent Acquisition said: “Employers want to determine how different candidates respond to challenges, and those who respond well may have the edge when it comes to receiving a job offer.”

Check out the questions below.

“You are lost at sea. You saved 15 items — put them in order of importance.”

For a position as a Customer Service Advisor at BT in Swansea.


“You are scuba diving with a friend. They are running out of oxygen but you’ve got plenty. What do you do?”

For a position as an Account Executive at Autotask, an IT management software company in Richmond.

“If I told you that you had to run 5km in 30 minutes in two weeks time, and your life depended on it, how would you prepare?”

For a position as a Corporate Foreign Exchange Broker at Alpha FX in Windsor.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Read More

This is the perfect time to schedule your job interview

interview, negotiation, meeting

You finally get the call. The hiring manager on the other end says they’d like you to come in to interview for the job you applied for — and they ask when you’re available to meet.

Overwhelmed with excitement, you may be inclined to say something along the lines of, “I can come in whenever you’d like me to,” or, “How’s tomorrow?”

But if you have the luxury of choosing the day and time to meet, consider being more strategic.

Glassdoor reports that certain times of day, and certain days of the week, are better than others.

After reviewing an Accountemps 2008 survey and Andrew Bradbury’s book, “Successful Presentation Skills,” writer Kate Parham determined that the best time to give a presentation is Tuesday morning around 10:30 a.m.

“Considering that the ‘best’ presentation times and interview times are likely similar, then Tuesday morning could be a great time to set up your interview,” writes career expert Rusty Rueff.

People are shown to be most productive on Tuesdays and won’t feel rushed by the time they meet you. It’s also late enough in the day that your interviewer has had time to check their email, have a cup of coffee, and get ready for your arrival.

If that time slot isn’t an option, think about when the interviewer would likely be in the best mood and most focused.

Here are some tips for selecting an interview time: 

SEE ALSO: 18 Surprising Things That Affect Whether You Get Hired

Avoid early-morning meetings. 

Rueff says mornings are great for holding someone’s attention, but you may want to avoid the first meeting of the morning because the interviewer may be preoccupied with “home stuff and all the things that need to happen throughout the day.” 

You should especially avoid first thing Monday morning, if possible, he says.

Avoid the last meeting of the workday. 

You also don’t want to be someone’s last meeting of the workday, because there’s a good chance the interviewer’s attention might not solely be on you. They could be thinking about priorities that they have after work, such as dinner plans, kids’ homework, etc., says Rueff. “And don’t even think about the end of the day on a Friday.” 

Avoid pre- or post-lunch meetings.

Just before or after lunch can also problematic. 

“Before lunch can leave you with a good interview being cut short, and after lunch can find you waiting and waiting,” Rueff explains. Plus, if you catch the interviewer before lunch when they’re hungry, they may not be in the best of moods.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Read More

One question employers should never ask in a job interview

obama chicago polling voting boothAs we head into election season, discussions are turning to politics more and more frequently.

Your mother may have warned you against talking about politics, but there’s one occasion especially when this conversation should be avoided entirely: the job interview.

You may think asking a potential employee, “Who are you voting for?” is a harmless icebreaker question — but it can get you into hot water, William A. Herbert, chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Section, tells Business Insider. 

Public employers

In the public sector, Herbert says asking about political affiliations during a job interview might violate state tenure laws that have been enacted since the 1800s to prohibit political patronage.

For example, under New York’s civil service law, public sector employers are prohibited from making political inquiries, with the exception of policy-making positions.

Herbert says that an applicant denied a public sector job following such an inquiry might also claim that the denial violated their right of association under the First Amendment and state law.

It’s also illegal for federal employers to ask federal employees and applicants about political party affiliation.

Private employers

“Although the law does not prevent a private-sector employer from asking about a potential employee’s political activities, any employer should think carefully before asking these questions,” says Stacey K. Grigsby, a lawyer with law firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP in Washington, DC, who specializes in employment law issues and previously worked for the US Justice Department.

Herbert points to state laws like New York’s Labor Law, which prohibit discrimination based on an individual’s off-duty and off-premises political activities and could form the basis for a lawsuit.

And asking job candidates about their political beliefs could be illegal if it were perceived as related to their race, gender religion, sexual orientation, or other legally protected status, Grigsby says.

“As a practical matter, such inquiries are inadvisable,” Herbert says. “It is rare that the political affiliation or plans for voting of an applicant or an employee has any relevance to the ability to perform a job.”

“And an employer could very well risk offending a qualified candidate with this type of question,” Grigsby says.

SEE ALSO: What to say if a hiring manager asks ‘Who are you voting for?’ during a job interview

DON’T MISS: 9 things hiring managers should never ask about in a job interview

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Louise Mensch tells us the best and worst mistakes she ever made

Read More

The favorite job interview questions of Elon Musk, Richard Branson, and 26 other highly successful executives

richard branson

Savvy executives know that interview questions like, “What’s your biggest strength?” and, “What’s your biggest weakness?” aren’t as telling as they seem.

That’s why they steer clear of these cliché queries and instead ask more meaningful ones.

Many of the most successful execs have their one favorite go-to question that reveals everything they need to know about a job candidate.

Here are 28 of them.

SEE ALSO: 9 things hiring managers should never ask about in a job interview

DON’T MISS: Here are the personal interview questions one CEO asks during every job interview

‘What didn’t you get a chance to include on your résumé?’

Virgin Group founder Richard Branson explains in his new book “The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership,” that he isn’t a fan of the traditional job interview, reports Business Insider’s Richard Feloni.

“Obviously a good CV is important, but if you were going to hire by what they say about themselves on paper, you wouldn’t need to waste time on an interview,” Branson writes. That’s why he likes to ask: What didn’t you get a chance to include on your résumé?

‘On a scale of one to 10, how weird are you?’

One of Zappos’ core values is to “create fun and a little weirdness,” Tony Hsieh, CEO of the company, tells Business Insider.

To make sure he hires candidates with the right fit, Hsieh typically asks the question: “On a scale of one to 10, how weird are you?” He says the number isn’t too important, but it’s more about how people answer the question. Nonetheless, if “you’re a one, you probably are a little bit too straight-laced for the Zappos culture,” he says. “If you’re a 10, you might be too psychotic for us.”

Another question Zappos usually asks candidates is: “On a scale of one to 10, how lucky are you in life?” Again, the number doesn’t matter too much, but if you’re a one, you don’t know why bad things happen to you (and probably blame others a lot). And if you’re a 10, you don’t understand why good things always seem to happen to you (and probably lack confidence).

‘What would the closest person in your life say if I asked them, ‘What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you, and the one that drives them insane?”

Kat Cole, group president of FOCUS Brands, tells Adam Bryant in a New York Times interview that before asking questions, she likes to see how job candidates interact with people in the waiting area.

“I’ll ask people to offer the candidate a drink to see if there’s a general gratefulness there, and they’ll send me notes,” she tells Bryant. “Then, when someone walks into my office, I’ll have a big wad of paper on my floor between the door and the table. I want to see if the person picks it up. I don’t make huge judgments around it, but it does give me a sense of how detail-oriented they are.”

After some conversation, she finally says: “Tell me about the closest person in your life who you’re comfortable talking about. What would they say if I asked them, ‘What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you?'”

Then she’ll say: “What is the one characteristic that drives them insane, and that they would love for you to do just a little bit less?”

“People are pretty comfortable talking about that because I’ve pinpointed a person and a point of view,” she tells the Times. 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Read More

The unusual thing one CEO and former Yahoo exec does at the beginning of every job interview

lorna borenstein

As a job candidate in the hot seat, you’ll probably be the one doing most of the talking.

But if you’re interviewing with Lorna Borenstein, founder and CEO of Grokker, a company that creates online cooking, yoga, and fitness videos, that won’t necessarily be the case.

Borenstein — who previously held VP roles at Yahoo and eBay — told Adam Bryant of The New York Times that she starts every job interview by sharing her life stories.

She does this because her objective is always to help the candidate do as well as possible, she said. “I want the candidate to show their best self. And I think if youre generous, and you put them at ease by being somewhat vulnerable in opening up first, and modeling the behavior youre expecting, it really does put people at ease to let them show you who they are, and all that they can do. I think its a really poor interview style to try to catch people or trip them up.”

Borenstein said she wants the interviewee to know where she’s from and how she got to be where she is now — and then she wants to hear the same from them.

“I want to understand what makes you tick, what your competencies are, and then hear about examples of when you either got it right, or when you got it wrong, and what you learned from it,” she told Bryant. “I also want to understand why you really want to work here — what is it that we’re going to do for you, and what are you going to do for us? And I also want to understand your long-term aspirations.”

Read the full New York Times interview here. 

SEE ALSO: Charles Schwab’s CEO takes job candidates to breakfast and asks the restaurant to mess up their order — here’s why

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: We showed real résumés to an expert and the feedback was brutal

Read More

Facebook’s head of recruiting explains what it’s like to interview there

facebook employees

Facebook is not only the best place to work in America — it’s one of the most desirable employers in the world.

It has 13,000 employees across 64 offices around the globe, and it continues to scale its size and ambition.

Key to this growth is finding exceptionally talented employees who are also committed to Facebook’s mission “to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.”

Miranda Kalinowski, Facebook’s global head of recruiting, explained to Business Insider what the tech powerhouse looks for and how the interview process works.

“We need to make sure that we’re hiring people who are deeply invested in us, first and foremost,” she said. “And we hire builders. So regardless of whether we’re hiring an engineer or a finance analyst, they’re going to be the people who like to build things.”

Before applicants are hired, they’ll typically go through four or five interviews that gauge their talent and cultural fit.

The first round is a phone interview with a recruiter, who assesses the candidate’s professional experience and passion for the company.

If that goes well, the candidate will then have a “technical” phone interview with someone who already has the job the candidate is applying for. For example, an engineer will be interviewed by a fellow engineer rather than by a recruiter who knows nothing about programming. 

miranda kalinowski facebookAny of these non-recruiter employees selected to do interviews must first undergo intensive training to ensure they know what to look for.

The third interview takes place on site and includes an office tour, which features a demo of the Oculus virtual reality headset to take some of the pressure off the candidate and help them open up.

“It’s very much a two-way street,” Kalinowski said. “They can find out more about us, and we can find out more about them.”

The remaining interviews are subject to the role and department. For example, an engineer may go through a coding interview, where an employee sees how quickly and accurately a candidate can write code on a whiteboard in response to a given situation.

All candidates are subject to hypothetical questions to test how they would respond on the job, as well as logic questions to test how they think — all of which ultimately test whether the person is right for Facebook.

Kalinowski’s favorite interview question, which is also popular among other interviewers there, is: “On your very best day at work — the day you come home and think you have the best job in the world — what did you do?” The interviewer is taught to look for an answer that indicates candidates will be personally driven to stretch themselves at Facebook, since a high level of talent is a prerequisite in the highly competitive tech industry.

The candidates who get hired are the ones who demonstrate that they’re just as excited as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is, Kalinowski said. “Anyone who listens to Mark will hear him say that we’ve still got 5 billion people to connect, so no one should be resting on their laurels. That sense of urgency and energy around it is infectious. “

SEE ALSO: Facebook’s head of recruiting explains the company’s top 3 approaches to finding exceptional employees

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: The richest billionaires under 35 and how they got their money

Read More

185: How to Handle an interview

Every Friday at 12 PM EST Grant Cardone, New York Times bestselling author and top sales trainer, gives you insights and advice to help you escape the middle class and achieve true freedom in business, career, and finance. He shows you how to get your game so tight, that you’re always right. Each week I teach you how to get your finances straight, get your life successful every day in every way.

Grant’s real and raw in-your-face approach serves as a wake-up call for anyone who has given up on the hustle and become complacent. The Cardone Zone is like no other business show on the air.

Watch one episode and you’ll be hooked.

Today Grant talks about “How to Handle an Interview” and “How to Control an Audience”.

It’s a beautiful Friday. TGIF = Thank God I’m Free. It’s more important to be free than what day of the week it is.

3 Things to Handle an Interview:
1. Know your audience
2. Decide to be friendly or antagonistic
3. Decide where you have altitude

Example 1: Periscope Summit Roundtable (Friendly)
Example 2: HuffPost Live (Antagonist)
Example 3: Fox Business (Maximize)

Take control of the interview. It’s not about the host. It’s not about the other people that might be there. It’s about you and you must control the situation.

Donald Trump knows how to play the antagonistic card. It’s fresh and new. Everyone is paying attention to him because his approach isn’t boring.

Read More