Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Interviewer’s Nightmare

Few weeks back, I participated in interviewing some candidates for an entry level role. I love to do this regularly, as it gives me an opportunity to briefly teach them some basic skills and share advice on how to succeed at interviews either midway or at the end of the session.

I was moved to write this piece because in all my thirteen years of doing this job and interviewing candidates, I have never been faced with this kind of situation. For the first time, I didn't know how to react to the situation.

At the end of every interview session, I would ask candidates if they have any question that they would like to ask. The usual questions would normally be around career path, career growth, benefits, development plans, or general information on the company.

One of the candidates said she had a question to ask, and we asked her to proceed. Can you believe what the question was? She asked, "Are you motivated working for this company?", and she wanted all members of the interviewing panel to answer this question.

We looked at each other and couldn't control the amount of laughter that followed. However, after we calmed down, we had to ask her, why she asked the question. Her simple reason was that, she wants to be able to judge if she will be motivated when she joins the company. We assured her that we love what we do for the company, hence, we are highly motivated.

I would like to hear your experience interviewing candidates. Have you been asked a question that took you off balance as an interviewer? Please share in the comments section of this post.

Follow me on Twitter @enmichael for tips that would help you improve yourself and your organization.


  1. she asked a very valid question!a question that most on the interview panel would shy away from . She was simply trying to guage "employee experience" in an informal way.

  2. A candidate once asked how long I had worked for the company and when I answered went on to ask if I felt fulfilled every day working for the company. Hmmmm!!! Was my response. And I thought for a while and told her... Fulfillment is in what I do and I achieve, where it's done sometimes doesn't matter as long as I have an opportunity to do...

  3. A candidate once asked an interview panel where i was in attendance...
    Are you all employees of this organization am being interviewed to join...if yes why are you not an you lack capacity to be entrepreneurs?
    we were all daze for a moment...

  4. Thanks for enlightening

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  6. now following this blog keenly.