We've all been on weird job interviews for jobs we didn't really want. These people went to interviews and were so turned off my the interviewer, they left and didn't look back!
She told me that the team I would be working with had a lot of interpersonal issues to the point where they couldn't fill out their own schedule without someone from HR mediating. Later on in the interview I asked her why she liked working there, which prompted a long awkward silence followed by a half-a--ed response Source
Me: "What are your actual hours? Like, if i looked at your employee sign in/sign out book, what would I see?"
Employer: "Well, um...we work hard, but we try to be reasonable, and..."
(I glance over at the rows of desks. They're full of people. It's 7:15 pm)
Employer: "We also have an office-wide conference call every Wednesday night at 9PM with our main office in Adelaide.."
NO THANKS Source
Fresh out of college I applied for a job as a developer at a company that made advergames and edugames. This was about 10 years ago when Flash games were huge and many companies wanted branded Flash games. Had a great interview. On the way in I was shown around the office. Nice people, interesting customers, cool projects. Made a great impression with my portfolio. Was told I was the last candidate and they were sufficiently impressed that we'd go straight ahead with the salary and benefits negotiation which also went fine. At this point it was 5'ish and they'd send me the paperwork for the contract. But since it was the end of the day, perhaps I'd like to see how they spend their evenings at this company... uh ok? I was taken to a large attic space. Big enough to stand freely but no windows. There were logs, like big real tree trunks placed around a fake camp fire on one side of the attic. On the other side were tents. Like proper camping tents with sleeping bags and stuff.
I was asked if I played any instruments because every night they'd come up here with the whole group of employees. Play music together around the fake camp fire while they had dinner. Then they'd go back to work for a few more hours and sleep in the f'ing tents so they could start early in the morning. Apparently most people only went home on the weekend. I was just so absolutely stumped that I didn't even decline the job on the spot. I just thanked them for the interview. Got on the train home and just sat there mulling it over. Declined the job over the phone the next day and the manager actually got pretty mad because he already accepted a job from a client and scheduled me on it Source
Was being interviewed by a large west coast search engine company several years ago. One of the interviewers noticed I had a thick southern accent and asked where I was from. I said Kentucky, and he asked me if it was true that a lot of people from there marry their cousins and if anyone in my family had done that. He was dead serious and wouldn't move on until I answered. I said no, and he looked at me like he didn't believe me. Super awkward. In the next interview (that guy's boss) he asked how my other interviews had gone so I mentioned the remark, and he seemed very put off that I brought it up. Interview went really cold after that. Got a call from them a week later and said I wouldn't be offered a job. A month later they called me back and asked if I was still interested and I declined Source
"This place is really demanding because we practice a very high level of medicine. Our current interns are s--- and we have had several quit within one week of the program because they couldn't handle it. But that's just because they were weak and we are too good for them. Why aren't your grades better? You aren't a very great candidate" Two weeks later..."why didn't you apply for our program? You were one of our top candidates" Source
At the in person interview, there was a panel of 3 people interviewing me for a position as an engineer with the city. Only one of the guys really talked, and the other 2 just kind of sat back and listened to what I had to say, interjecting only for minor clarification.
Question 1: Please describe the wastewater treatment process. Be as detailed as your knowledge allows.
I answer in detail, explaining that I had actually toured one of their plants recently and mentioned what processes they used.
Question number 2: Are you familiar with (insert process that I just explained)?
I looked at them kind of dumbfounded since I had just explained that process to them, but I go ahead and explain the chemistry behind the process I had just explained to them in finer detail.
Question 3: "Are you familiar with the chemistry behind the process?"
At this point I am 95% sure that working here would mean no freedom at all, as everything has to be done by the book to the point of absurdity. I can no longer control my facial expression and it must have been apparent because the interviewers all apologized and said that they could only score me on how I answered each question as they came up. I ended up repeating myself for the whole interview, which went on for another 45 minutes. I got the job but declined Source
Interviewing at Freebirds (restaurant) I was asked, "We believe there's a lot behind a name. Do you know where the name Led Zeppelin comes from?" Well, I'm a big fan of rock music, "Sure, it's named ironically, because a zeppelin is a flying machine, but a 'lead' zeppelin wouldn't take flight-"
Supervisor: "Actually, Led Zeppelin was named after the gym teacher of the founding members. He didn't believe in them, and they knew they were going to be a success. Not only that, but this restaurant is named after one of their songs."
Me: "Hmm. Yeah, I thought Lynyrd Skynyrd wrote Free Bird."
Supervisor: "No. And I really recommend you do your research to get to know the company if we do end up offering you a position" Source
Applied for a second part time job to pick up some extra hours. Was told in the interview that I would have to quit my first job (completely unrelated area and both are part of the local university) because it was a "conflict of interest". My primary job is management in charge of 350 people. Made that choice pretty d--- easy for me Source
I had the worst interview ever. It was a husband and wife duo furniture design company. She said as the front desk person/ designer I would have to "keep track and take care of her husband". This was before the husband interview portion where he asked me questions like: are you married and do you have children? Are you healthy? We don't want people with kids because they always have issues and we don't have health insurance. Then he offers me 20k Source
The employer was a publisher. First they told me about the job, which was basically the entire duties of a graphic artist plus the entire duties of a web programmer put together, and honestly, at the time there were undoubtedly only a handful of people (including myself) who could do the job in the first place. Then they told me how marvelous the company was going, with X billion dollars of profit in the last year, and how this meant I'd have a bright future there with lots of stability. I gave some thought to what they were asking me to do, what I was already earning (being just a web programmer without the graphic art duties), and what I'd want to earn for that job. I decided that I wouldn't consider it without a $30,000 raise. We got around to the discussion of what they were willing to pay for the position, and the number they mentioned was a $5,000 pay cut from what I was already earning. I explained that this was, frankly, insulting, and that they had no business wasting the time of the best people in the industry with interviewing for such a ridiculous salary. They told me that they're the publishing industry, and publishers traditionally pay less than other employers for the same job. I asked why. They said it was because publishing is a low profit margin industry. So I pointed out that they had some nerve to try to claim poverty to me after their little lecture about how many billion dollars of profit they'd made last year. Then I stood up and walked out. No way in hell was I ever going to work for that employer Source
I'm a painter, and my chosen career has led me to some interesting characters. About 3 years ago, after moving to Boulder, CO I found myself responding to job postings that had any relevance to paint, painting, or art. So I see one posted by a guy starting a "green" (organic, no-VOCs) paint company who needs someone to mix paints for him. Perfect! The details were vague, but I assumed he meant someone to mix pigments and make different colors, which sounded really awesome. So I get to the coffee shop where we agreed to meet and turns out this guy hadn't had a haircut in at least 2 years, and he had this full lumberjack beard that he was not taking proper care of. Long story short, this guy tells me that he wants me to research how to make "green" paint, buy the supplies, mix it up, and bring it to him when it's ready. After that I'd be setting up production of paint in my apartment until he had the funds to open up an actual store. Oh and I'd be a partner in this business, so my payment would be some share of the profits once we were up and running. Later that day I sent him a polite email saying that I was pursuing other job opportunities Source
During a phone interview, I asked the potential manager about work life balance. He started out by telling me that his team worked reasonable hours, which gradually turned into a rant about how his team never brought their laptops home at night and didn't reply to email after 7pm, despite him having multiple "discussions" with them about "being more reachable". During the same conversation, he mentioned that the company had grown so fast that there had been a lot of battlefield promotions that put some less-than-qualified people in management, but that it had slowed down a lot recently. So... It's hard to get promoted AND a lot of managers are unqualified? Source
Went in for a bartending job at a new chain restaurant that was opening up. At this point I had ten years experience but I also had about a year going on at my day job which was actually going to be my career. I still wanted to bartend though because that money is too good to ever walk away from completely. So I go in and theres 2 interviewers. The GM of the new opening store and some hiring coordinator from their corporate office. They are interviewing the guy before me with the door open. I hear the woman ask what kind of experience he has and when he tells her she says "Well, thats not really a high volume place. We need people that can handle high volume." and she sent him on his way. So I go in next and we start talking and she says "Oh, it says here you don't want to work any weekday day shifts. Whys that?" I tell her I have another job and she tells me they aren't hiring anyone that doesn't have completely open availability. I said "Didn't you just tell the guy before me you wanted people could handle high volume? For the last 10 years Ive bartended at the highest volume bar in Philadelphia. You're really not going to hire me because of schedule restrictions?" She said they wanted open availability and asked if Id maybe consider leaving my other job. I laughed. Literally laughed at her and said "Lady Im making $40k a year there and I pretty much just started. Im not going to give that up to work lunch." Then I thanked them and walked out. The GM followed me out and said he wanted to hire me because he knew who I was through and old coworker of mine and that she was just being a b----. He said if I changed my availability on the application he could promise me Id never be scheduled a weekday day shift. So I switched it and got the job. And he stood by his word. Its funny because the interviewer was the one I didn't want to work for but once the interview was done I never saw her again. She never worked in the actual store at all Source
Interview for a transcriptionist job, me with 20 years experience, I had just moved to a new town. Older lady gives me the test tape and says it's timed, and I shouldn't feel bad if I can't finish it all in an hour. I type up the five very short and medically easy reports in about 15 minutes, that includes proofreading them and checking to make sure that was all of them (?) I tell her I'm finished and she's all flustered 'already?' and goes and has a confab with another older woman. They acted like I must have cheated somehow and I leave, never hear back.
Got a call from them six months later (I would have starved to death by then) asking if I was still interested. Nope. Interviewed at Kaiser Permanente for the same kind of job, was hired immediately at top wage based on my experience, not 'starting' wage like most places do it. KP is a good place to work IMHO.
Moral of the story: If someone says they have 20 years experience and can type 120 wpm, believe them, especially if they do it in front of you Source