PCS Blog

Craziest Job Interview Ever? Tell us your Story!

Posted by Natalie Gilmore | 24 January 2013


Venus in Fur is the story of an audition. A young actress stumbles into the audition room hours late and quite disheveled. It's not a good beginning for her. As she fumbles in, we, the audience, can't help but empathize. While we may not be actors who constantly have to audition, everyone has been through the ringer of interviewing for a job.
No matter how many times you've done it, interviewing for a job is HARD! What should you say? What should you wear? Show eagerness or be aloof? How do you casually bring your skills and qualifications into the conversation? How do you gauge if these people would be miserable to work with? What if you accidentally swear? What if it's quiet and awkward? What if you can't stop sweating? What if they look up your Facebook page? Did you untag yourself in those bachelorette party photos? Argh!!!
Do you have a job interview horror story? Tell us how it all went wrong and you'll be entered to win a pair of tickets to Venus in Fur and dinner for two at Coppia. The winner will be drawn randomly from all the entries Friday, February 1.
And we have a winner! Congratulations Alethea!! Your ticket voucher and Coppia gift certificate are in the mail!
Comments (7)

In high school I interviewed at Wendy’s and was asked to start immediately, summer job…I was so excited…Till they asked me to start mopping! I wanted to wear the headset! What horror! I finished the shift and never went back. That was my first and last job in the fast food industry!

  • Cris
  • portland
  • 01 Feb 13 10:19

I interviewed with the IRS a few years ago for what was supposed to be a communications/media position (with the primary emphasis on the communications part). The weekend before the interview, I spoke for over an hour with a friend’s cousin who had worked for the IRS. I did my best to prepare.

My interview was held in the federal building downtown, by video conference call with the interviewers in Sacramento (so I was the only person actually in the room…weird enough).

When the interview started, it soon became clear that it was really ALL a media relations job. (It must have been posted incorrectly.) They didn’t care about my communications experience at all. I would have had to wear a 24-hour pager and be a media relations expert on all things IRS and tax related. So all the questions were about tax laws. How would I respond to the press if Sammy Sosa donated a bat to a nonprofit, etc. WTH—how on earth would I know?

I have never been in an interview where I felt so unprepared or out of sync. I’m sure I got all the questions wrong because I’d never worked for the IRS and I am not a tax law expert! I’m usually the one doing the interviewing (in my career), so at the end of the interview I told them that I was aware that I didn’t meet their needs. I followed it up with thank you cards saying that I hoped that they found the right person for their job.

And I walked back to my great, full-time, well-paying, and no-24-hour-pager job and appreciated it ever more than I did before!!

  • Marie
  • Portland
  • 31 Jan 13 12:13

Please enter me in “The Perfect Date”
thank you

I interviewed for a C-level Executive Assistant job at a major financial company in New York City. While the initial screening interview with HR went well, I didn’t really care for the executive once I met him. Still, I was offered the job within 24 hours. Instead of flat-out saying I didn’t want the job, I instead told HR that I was considering my options (to be fair I did have other offers on the table). They then upped the offer significantly and included a signing bonus. Sadly, I ultimately had to tell them I just couldn’t work with that person. I know I’m better off for it!

I had an interview for an internship and thought it went well.  I was interviewed by a psychologist.  After the interview, I was sitting outside her office and overheard tell someone what a boring person I was and that I would not get the position.  I was very demoralized.  Hopefully today I would have gone back in and challenged her.

  • Mary Rice
  • Portland OR
  • 30 Jan 13 08:40

Never wear nylons to a job interview if you have poison oak. I start with the moral because it is just that important. During grad school in California, I applied for several internships with local and county health-related organizations. This being the 80’s, I wore my Macy’s suit with shoulder pads and L’eggs nylons proudly. However, this also being sunny California, it was hot.  I’d managed to get my legs into a lot of poison oak during a long weekend hike. While the itching had abated somewhat, the puffy red patches didn’t work well with the outfit.  So I ran to the drug store and bought some L’eggs. About 10 minutes into the interview, my actual legs were on fire. Soon it was all I could think about. I covertly tried to use my pen, elbow,, resume binder to scratch just a little bit. Finally it was just too much; I confessed to the nice interviewer and we ended up bonding over poison oak stories.  I got to scratch.  She taught me the ice cube trick tip (scratch with an ice cube-brilliant).  And I got the job.

While living in Chicago in the late 70s after my first year of college, I got an interview to work at a lawyer’s office for the summer. Perfectly respectable, right? I was unfamiliar with Chicago and it took me more than two hours to get there on the bus from the North Side. We kept going further and further into the deep South Side of Chicago which, back then, was a pretty scary place with a lot of crime. The clientele on the bus started getting rather threatening-looking. A fight even broke out on the bus and the driver didn’t even blink an eye. Once I got there, I had to walk up a few flights of stairs to a dingy, disheveled office that smelled rank and was full of cigarette smoke. I was 19 with long blonde hair, blue eyes, incredibly naive, with a gullible look on my face. Fish bait. Once I was there I tried to take the interview seriously but the lawyer kept asking me questions about whether or not I was willing to work really late—he said, really REALLY late—possibly so late that I couldn’t get home again on the bus—and that this job required me to do more than just be a secretary. He could have just been sleazy but he reminded me of a mob lawyer. Not that I really knew what that was, but my imagination ran wild. I just acted like I was seriously interested and tried to get out of there without seeming too hasty. I never got a call back though. Thank goodness, since I was just young and naive enough I might have actually considered it.

  • Christy Staats
  • 26 Jan 13 01:58

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