Everyone dreads job interviews, and for good reason. You’re bombarded with personal questions, put on the spot, and expected to have your five-year plan laid out in full detail before walking through the door.
They say practice makes perfect but, in the case of job interviews, they never get better. Here are some of the most awkward and hilarious job interview scenarios that job seekers of all ages will have to contend with in their quest for employment.
The work experience catch-22
We’ve all seen those job adverts that are looking for junior candidates – with three years of experience. A problem that most fresh graduates will encounter straight out of university, many employers take the puzzling approach of trying to fill junior positions with skilled individuals.
Sometimes experience is a legitimate requirement for an employer who is looking to fill the skill gap within their ranks, but often if your CV and university experience are impressive enough, you could be in with a good chance of getting a call back.
The “where do you see yourself” questions
Another favourite for interviewers is to put the interviewee firmly on the spot by asking them where they see themselves in five or ten years. This question is usually asked to judge the ambitions of a candidate and whether they have the drive to be successful within the company.
Don’t go into the interview under-prepared, but don’t feel compelled to have your entire future laid out before you. Instead, go in with a basic knowledge of where you see your career going, what role you’d like to be playing in the next few years, and how you’re going to make it happen. Just don’t step on anyone’s toes.
Tell us about yourself
Most people feel slightly awkward when it comes to talking about themselves. This is made even worse with the question, “Tell us a little bit about yourself”, where the interviewer is trying to get a better feel for your character and whether you’d be a good fit for the company.
The key here is to not brag your way through or parrot your achievements off your CV. Instead, focus on areas you believe you could add value to the company, why you would fit in with the company culture, and show your knowledge of who the company is and what it does.
Called out for a questionable CV
Lying on your CV is a cardinal sin. This is something that a lot of people still do, despite every Google result for “writing a good CV” telling you not to, and is something that a capable interviewer will pick up on very quickly in your interview.
Fabricating qualifications or work experience is the most common, and can jeopardise the outcome of your interview. Don’t focus too much on trying to impress your potential employer with fake achievements, rather highlight your personal successes and use those as a springboard to wow the interviewers.