The 5 Most Annoying Interview Questions, We Should All Stop Asking.

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There are some interview questions that seem to crop up time and time again…

The “essentials” one might say.

But what do candidates actually really think about them? Well, this week I’ve compiled a list of the five most annoying interview questions, according to candidates.

(Don’t shoot the messenger!)

1. “Where do you see yourself in five years?”

I think candidates probably find this one annoying because most of us don’t even know what we want for lunch, let alone a five year plan.

Forced to say something along the lines of…

“Hopefully, I will be working in a management/ senior position with your company, as a direct result of my hard work and the brilliant results I achieved during that time.”

…when really we’re probably thinking:

  • Travelling the world would be nice.
  • Hopefully, I’ll have paid off all my debts by then.
  • I have absolutely NO idea.

What do you think?

2. “Why do you want to work here?”

Let’s be honest, this one is just asking for a pile of bullsh*t.

What pretty much ALL candidates will say:

“I think I’d fit in really well, I’m really passionate about {your company mission} and you also seem like a really friendly bunch!”

What most are (probably) thinking:

  • I kind of need a job to survive.
  • You’re paying more money.
  • It’s a job. I want a new job.
  • I have absolutely NO idea.

Emphasis on “most.”

3. “What is your greatest weakness?”

I know for a fact that this one p*sses off candidates.

Probably because it feels far too much like a trap; shall I be honest, or lie, can I turn a con into a pro or is that just cheesy?

So usually it’ll go a bit like this…

“I just work too hard. I know I should say no, but I really struggle to.”

“I used to be terrible at A, so I did some extra training and now I’m awesome at A.”

But in all honesty, the really answer is much more likely to be something like…

  • I’m always late.
  • I just can’t turn down cake.
  • I hate Excel.
  • *Scotch

*A candidate genuinely said this to me. At the time I thought it was absurd, but now I think about it, maybe not… it’s honest at least.

4. “If you were a superhero, which would you be & why?”

Sorry what? Is there even a “right” answer?

Because I’m pretty sure this has no relevance to anything.

You can also swap “superhero” for fruit, animal or basically anything you dream up

What you probably should answer:

  • I don’t see the relevance of the question.
  • Batman, because he worked really hard to become the superhero he is, so he respects his super-ness more.
  • I am a superhero (ok, maybe not).

What you really want to answer:

“Batman because he’s obviously the most badass superhero that ever lived!”

I’m not sure that would go down very well though. Who knows?

5. “Are you a team player?”

So, how would this go down?

Interviewer: “Are you a team player?”

Interviewee: “No.”

Interviewer: “Oh.”

There is, quite clearly, a right answer.

Summary

Perhaps you’ve asked, been asked or heard other people complain about them?

And why are they so annoying? I think ultimately it comes down to level of bullsh*t they require. To answer any of the above, you do kind of need to be able to “talk the talk” using fluffy, fake and over-the-top answers. It’s all a bit cringe-worthy!

So what can we learn from these candidate complaints?

Probably, that we shouldn’t ask silly questions, unless we want to hear silly answers!


Category: Interview Questions, Interviewing, Recruitment

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