Hiring Humor: Ex-Boss Bashing

Bah humbug.

You always expect candidates to be on their best behavior in an interview setting. Unfortunately, sometimes their Scrooge-y side inadvertently slips out.

Have you ever interviewed a candidate who didn’t exactly put their best foot forward? Post a comment below to tell us your temperamental tale.

In HR and recruiting, you have the BEST stories. You’ve lived through them to tell the tales (anonymously, of course!) We simply put them on paper for others to empathize – and enjoy a little hiring humor.

8 Responses to “Hiring Humor: Ex-Boss Bashing”

  1. This has happened time and time again … I love the job-hoppers who explain their constant job changes by saying that all their bosses and co-workers “sucked” and are always out to get them. Nothing’s ever their fault, but they’re sure they will excel if we hire them. Hmmm. Not a chance.

  2. We had a walk-in interview with a potential candidate this year that looked great at the onset. His qualifications were good, his recent experience aligned closely with the position we were looking to fill, but when we sat down to talk with him it all went horribly wrong.

    We often ask about how a candidate has dealt with a challenging client in their recent work history. This candidate began to tell us exact name of a client, how “hot” her office staff was, and what a @#$% she was. He cussed several times while telling his story, apologizing at the end for all his language, but he was clearly reckless in the expression of his experience.

    As soon as he walked out the door we all looked at each other and started swearing about “what a #@&$’ing shame” it was he couldn’t demonstrate a little diplomacy in an unfamiliar professional setting. We were genuinely sad we couldn’t hire him, but his performance reminded us why interviews are so critical to hiring.

  3. Worst interview on record:
    A lawyer friend interviewed week after week for a new legal secretary. Women came in off the beach, dragging sand into his office to interview. To say he was discouraged is an understatement. One morning, a woman in a suit sat across the desk from him and he thought that someone upstairs had finally answered his prayers. As the interview went on, he became more hopeful about offering her the job and was forming an offer in his head…when he noticed that there was a hair sticking out parallel to the ground from her bee hive hair do, a decades old style even for the time. Casually, he reached for his glasses so that he could see clearer and noticed that the “hair” seemed to slowly growing forward. When out a bit, it began to curve downward towards her forehead and there was a moving little black dot at the end of the “hair.” Continuing the conversation as though nothing was out of place (except that “hair”), he continued to watch and realized the dot was kind of wiggling. It finally got low enough that it was between her eyes. Without missing a beat, she admonished the dot, “Fred, what are you doing down here. Get back in there!” With that, she gently grabbed the “hair” above the dot and poked Fred back into her bee hive hair do. She explained that spiders were terribly misunderstood and hounded to extinction so she let an entire family of them live in her hair, which she didn’t wash. The interview concluded quickly with no job offer!

  4. I managed a search last year for a Test Engineer. During the initial screening process I spoke with a candidate who appeared on paper to be a really good match. I grew more excited as the phone interview progressed – he seemed to be culturally aligned, demonstrated good communication skills, etc. At the end of the call I told him I wanted to invite him in to meet our team and explained as part of this next step he would be asked to take a technical test to help us gauge his technical skills. His response was “I don’t believe in tests”.

  5. I had a candidate that was going through the interview process with the company I work for. He made it to the final stages of interviewing with a government customer. I was having a hard time getting a hold of him to talk to the customer. When he finally responded with a time, he missed the interview. That night as I was sleeping, the candidate calls me at 3:30am. He had mistaken my number for his hooker’s number. He said he was calling to make sure he had the address correct. I was very confused and disoriented given the time. I asked the person on the phone if he was indeed the candidate I thought he was (as I had called him many times that day from my cell phone and recognized the number). He said it was him. I told him he had the wrong number. He said he did not have the wrong number and that he had already sent me a text (he did not). I asked if he was asking for directions for his interview. He said “no, I am calling about my lap dance,” and then proceeded to tell me his current location. I told him that I was his recruiter from the company I work for. I didn’t give him a chance to say anything and hung up. Needles to say, he is not getting the job.