We've all been interviewed for jobs. And we've all spent most of those interviews thinking about what not to do. Don't bite your nails. Don't fidget. Don't interrupt. Don't belch. We knew if we did any of the don'ts, we'd disqualify ourselves instantly. But some job applicants go light-years beyond this. We surveyed top personnel executives of 100 major American corporations and asked for stories of unusual behavior by job applicants.
1. Said he was so well-qualified that if he didn't get the job, it would prove that the company's management was incompetent.
2. Stretched out on the floor to fill out the job application.
3. Brought her large dog to the interview.
4. Chewed bubble gum and constantly blew bubbles.
5. Wore a Walkman and said she could listen to me and the music at the same time.
6. Balding candidate abruptly excused himself. Returned to office a few minutes later, wearing a hairpiece.
7. Challenged interviewer to arm wrestle.
8. Announced she hadn't had lunch and ate a hamburger and french fries in the interviewer's office.
9. Man wore jogging suit to interview for position as financial vice president.
10. When I asked him about his hobbies, he stood up and started tap dancing around my office.
11. Had a little pinball game and challenged me to play with him.
12. Took a brush out of my purse, brushed his hair and left.
13. During the interview, an alarm clock went off from the candidate's brief case. He took it out, shut it off, apologized and said he had to leave for another interview.
14. Applicant came in wearing only one shoe. She explained that the other shoe was stolen off her foot on the bus.
15. His attache case opened when he picked it up, and the contents spilled, revealing ladies' undergarments and assorted makeup and perfume.
16. He came to the interview with a moped and left it in the reception area. He didn't want it to get stolen, and stated that he would require indoor parking for the moped.
17. He took off his right shoe and sock, removed a medicated foot powder and dusted it on the foot and in the shoe. While he was putting back the shoe and sock, he mentioned that he had to use the powder four times a day, and this was the time.
18. Said he really didn't want to get a job, but the unemployment office needed proof that he was looking for one.
19. Whistled when the interviewer was talking.
20. Asked who the lovely babe was, pointing to the picture on my desk. When I said it was my wife, he asked if she was home now and wanted my phone number. I called security.
21. She threw up on my desk, and immediately started asking questions about the job like nothing had happened.
22. Pointing to a black case he carried into my office, he said that if he was not hired, the bomb would go off. Disbelieving, I began to state why he would never be hired and that I was going to call the police. He then reached down to the case, flipped a switch and ran. No one was injured, but I did need to get a new desk. (Wall Street Journal 1989)
23. Asked if I wanted some cocaine before starting the interview.