Hiring Managers Reveal Unusual Behaviors During Job Interview Process

February 23, 2012 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – Hiring managers shared the biggest mistakes candidates make during the interview process. 

According to the CareerBuilder survey, the following are mistakes most detrimental to the interview process:

•  Answering cell phone or texting—77%;

•  Appearing disinterested—75%;

•  Dressing inappropriately—72%;

•  Appearing arrogant—72%;

•  Talking negatively about current or previous employers—67%; and

•  Chewing gum—63%.


Hiring managers also shared their most memorable or unusual interview experiences. Here are some of the highlights:

•  Candidate brought a “how to interview” book with him to the interview.

•  Candidate asked, “What company is this again?”

•  Candidate put the interviewer on hold during a phone interview. When she came back on the line, she told the interviewer that she had a date set up for Friday.

•  When a candidate interviewing for a security position wasn’t hired on the spot, he painted graffiti on the building.

•  Candidate wore a Boy Scout uniform and never told interviewers why.

•  Candidate was arrested by federal authorities during the interview when the background check revealed the person had an outstanding warrant.

•  Candidate talked about promptness as one of her strengths after showing up 10 minutes late.

•  On the way to the interview, the candidate passed, cut-off, and flipped his middle finger at the driver who happened to be the interviewer.

•  Candidate referred to himself in the third person.

•  Candidate took off his shoes during the interview.

•  Candidate asked for a sip of the interviewer’s coffee.

•  Candidate told the interviewer she wasn’t sure if the job offered was worth “starting the car for.”


The survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive on behalf of CareerBuilder among 3,023 hiring managers and human resource professionals (employed full-time, not self-employed, non-government) between November 9 and December 5, 2011.