DEV Community

Cover image for Describe the worst job interview you've ever taken part in
Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

Posted on

Describe the worst job interview you've ever taken part in

Let's hear it!

Discussion (50)

Collapse
isaacdlyman profile image
Isaac Lyman

I'm sure I've told this story before, it gets funnier to me every time.

The interview was to work on a very small web services team for the Chemistry department at my university. It was an absolute mess from start to finish.

  • Their office was the most depressing physical location I've ever been in. An old, musty university basement with bare walls and sketchy fluorescent lighting. Basically a dungeon.
  • They'd printed out several pages of interview questions. Like, an intimidating stack of paper. Most of the questions had acronyms I'd never heard of. To this day I think I would fail that interview.
  • They asked my thoughts on Python. I said in my experience it was a little slow, pretty good scripting language though. (This was 2010.) They said it wasn't slow, it was one of the fastest ones. Still not sure what they were talking about.
  • The hiring manager FELL ASLEEP halfway through the interview. His employee had to complete it without him.
  • A day or two after the interview they sent me a one-line email response. It said "We cannot hire you because you do not know much about the Internet."

Dodged a bullet, I guess?

Collapse
bhupesh profile image
Bhupesh Varshney 👾

Jesus christ, this had me rolled over 🤣
Thanks for sharing

Collapse
nickytonline profile image
Nick Taylor

The entire company interviewed me. It was a startup years ago, but still, nine people interviewing you at the same time asking you questions non-stop at a roundtable was rough.

Two Power Rangers putting there hands on their heads as if to say "No!"

Collapse
rbkolm profile image
Richard B Kolm

The "entire company" interview should be classified as a form of abuse or torture. I also had one of those. Big conference table with 8 to 10 people at a time, people coming and going, me on the long side in the middle getting whiplash trying to see who was talking and how the senior people were reacting to answers. After a while everybody was grinning a bit, and it was funny but I felt like a zoo animal. No feedback, no followup, classic ghosting. Over 3 people at one time is a waste unless its a presentation or something.

Collapse
jfbiswajit profile image
Biswajit Biswas

Similar happened to me

Collapse
jessesbyers profile image
Jesse Smith Byers

I showed up for an interview and was asked to wait in an otherwise-empty waiting room. The secretary went back and told the hiring manager I had arrived. He walked into the waiting room, and scanned the entire room looking for his applicant, not seeming to notice that I was sitting right in front of him. He then asked the secretary where Jesse was. It was immediately clear that he was not expecting a female applicant.

I can barely remember the details of the actual interview - the interviewer seemed disinterested, didn't ask me very many questions.

In my eyes the interview was over before it had even started - I did not belong there.

Collapse
citizen428 profile image
Michael Kohl • Edited on

I once interviewed at a company that almost felt cult-like and everyone already there seemed to consider themselves one of the chosen few. The interview started well enough but turned pretty adverserial after about half an hour, which was a bit weird because they had contacted me saying I'd be such a great fit for the role (which tbh I was). I sent them an email afterwards listing the things that I thought weren't done well and they said thanks for the feedback, they'd like to schedule a follow-up call to talk through my experience. I agreed but never heard from them again. Dodged a bullet there I'd say.

Collapse
brense profile image
Rense Bakker

I had a job interview once for a junior PHP role (that didnt mention anything about multi-lingual support) and one of the question was how I would deal with chinese characters in my code. I explained that I didn't have any hands on experience dealing with chinese characters and that I would probably search stackoverflow for the best way to deal with the problem. They indicated they wanted a better answer and I panicked and said I would probably look for a library to deal with special characters. This made it even worse. They then went on a rant about how libraries are bad and that they only used code that they wrote themselves. They didnt go as far as calling me stupid, but their contempt for me as a developer was oozing through the (very tiny) room when they said goodbye. To this day I am happy that they didnt hire me. I consider it the best thing that ever happened to me 😂

Collapse
ismaestro profile image
Ismael Ramos

So if the have to validate a phone number for example, they do their own library yup.

Yes, the best thing of that interview was that they didn't hire you xD

Collapse
brense profile image
Rense Bakker

And the best part is, after 12 years, they still only offer their application in Dutch, English and German 😂

Collapse
joshpuetz profile image
Josh Puetz

A few years ago a now well known company insisted on flying me out to San Fransisco to interview even through I was interviewing for a remote position...and then proceeded to have 4 out of the 6 hours be remote interviews over Zoom. As in: I sat in a conference room at their headquarters and the remote employees that would have been on me team dialed in. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Lunch was a one hour session with two people from HR (this is one of the sessions that wasn't over zoom). They brought me lunch and a drink: I was specifically told I could not leave the office. I was encouraged to "make smalltalk" so they could "judge my personality" 🤨

The final interview of the day was with the recruiter, was was determined to know what my desired salary was. I didn't want to give her a number first, which kind of my thing:

She threatened to withhold reimbursement for the airfare and hotel unless I gave her an exactly salary requirement! It was...tense. We ended up agreeing I wasn't a good fit for the company right there and then.

Collapse
jeremyf profile image
Jeremy Friesen

Wow…and I have visions of some kind of stand-off. Corporate beige/grey a blur in the background. The "showdown" music of a Western plays as Josh and HR stare at each other.

(And that is some shady-ass behavior from that organization to withhold reimbursement; tells you far more than you ever need know.)

Collapse
graciegregory profile image
Gracie Gregory (she/her)

I once interviewed for a marketing job at small design agency. The interview was with the Creative Director/owner, who looked me up and down the moment I entered the room, and pretty clearly didn't like the (professional) outfit I was wearing and seemed to obviously have decided based on my appearance that I wasn't going to get the job.

The proceeding 15 minutes were spent quizzing me about the life and times of visual artists he liked — which had 0 to do with the position. When I was mid-sentence answering one of his questions, he called for his assistant, asking if the other candidate was there yet because he was "ready for her". His assistant escorted the next candidate in and he began asking her questions before he even said goodbye, thank you, or anything to me. They also had asked me to take my shoes off (which were brand new) which they hadn't done to the other candidate so I had to scramble to put them back on to leave.

Later that day, they emailed me asking me to complete a video project for the role. I was early-career and naive at the time so I completed the assignment but never heard from them again. I'm pretty sure he just wanted to laugh at whatever I sent him.

I get steamed just thinking about it.

Collapse
jeremyf profile image
Jeremy Friesen

Interview started in March, final round was in late July, and I didn't hear back until mid-September. And one of the requirements of the last round of interview was that my current supervisor was a required reference.

I was fortunate in that my supervisor was very understanding and gave a good reference. But I can also imagine a case where an under-represented person applied for this position and that final requirement either had them withdraw or exposed them to reprisals at their current work.

I gave the hiring committee feedback, as well as their supervisor. I encouraged them to advocate for change as I knew their personal aspirational values aligned with DEI initiatives.

Collapse
steveblue profile image
Stephen Belovarich • Edited on

Oh, so many bad experiences to chose from. Which is the worst? That’s hard to pinpoint, but I would have to say driving to Beverly Hills to be charged parking (w/o validation) only to be greeted by two developers who didn’t really even introduce themselves much less give me any context for their positions, but they did offer a desk I could sit at.

The two developers had a compouter waiting, logged in. They wanted me to code a feature of an app, but didn’t bother putting an IDE on this computer. They watched me stumble, download an IDE, try to install it, and fail (lack of permissions). Yeah that’s right, you heard me, they watched me, over my shoulder the entire time. When they could finally resolve the permissions, I had to figure out the directory structure of an app, then code against it, in 30 minutes. Something told me at the time nobody at the office knew front end, which at the time of my career appeared more like a curse than a blessing.

Then there was the time Amazon flew me to headquarters. I stayed in a nice hotel, I thought it must be nice because I recognized basketball players staying there. The next day, I interviewed all day long, multiple rounds of technical interviews increasing in difficulty, but along the way, thought I performed well. I flew home from Seattle, waited a week to be told I didn’t get the job because of one point. One point? Really? The Amazon recruiter said he’d never seen it before and if I had earned one more point on their test, I would have had an offer.

I’m sure I have repressed so many bad experiences.

Collapse
bhupesh profile image
Bhupesh Varshney 👾 • Edited on
  • Interview was supposed to last 30 minutes
  • First few minutes, a bunch of questions asked about my knowledge, stack etc
  • in the same call, I was asked to build a functional API. Note that by now only 15 mins or so are remaining.
  • I start building it, couldn't complete. Was asked to take it as a take home assignment and submit whenever complete.
  • I spend the same night completing it, send them a link to a public repo
  • No reply for 2 days. I remind both the HR and the guy who took the interview. Again a week has passed no response
  • Got ghosted pretty bad. Now take home assignments are hard for me to complete unless they are quick to build
Collapse
noriller profile image
Bruno Noriller • Edited on

Hey, you asked...

Even though it was for a internship so long ago, I still remember to this day.
It would be a "group interview" with a few candidates, the moment the "boss" came and started greeting each one, the time he shook my hand, I could see his disgust with me.
The whole time he would ask each and everyone questions, hear the answers and add to it... except for me, for me... his assistant ended up doing most answers and listening while he played on his phone when it was my turn. Could be just me, but I believe it got awkward to everyone. Obviously, didn't get the internship while everyone else, or almost that got it.

But why stop at only one, right?

A more recent one, now online... the interviewer asked, and I would say how I would fit on what they are looking for and all. The interview seemed "normal" until the end, when the interviewer, as if talking to a hidden camera said something along the lines of "Well, as you said, it seems you're not a fit, so thank you for your time, bye.".

One still fresh was that after passing through all of the steps, challenges, talking to everyone, my "feedback" was from a "no-reply" email as generic as a first interaction one. I insisted on a feedback call as stated on that email, after much trouble I got the "feedback" that they really liked me, but they were actually looking for someone more senior, probably with 10-15 years of experience (I have 5).

BTW... did I mention I have a cleft lip and speech impediment?

Well... the last one is that I even gave a heads up that I have a speech impediment. In the interview, many times they brought up about how I communicate with my peers and all that, I said the ways I make sure it's not a problem, and finally after the interview they said something on the line of "well, I can see how it would affect communication on the team... so thank you for your time, but we won't continue from here."

I probably have some more that I don't remember, and probably will have more in the future...
Still looking, but sometimes thinking on giving up...
Some of those companies have whole pages on how inclusive they are... OMHO: bullshit.

Collapse
moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

How about the time I interviewed for a PHP role and they passed me over because apparently I didn't mention I knew PHP, despite having done a complete technical inteview?

Or the time I got left in a meeting room for an hour because they forgot about me and the company were going on a trip? I only got out of there by sheer luck.

Or the time I got phoned up for feedback on the interview process because apparently I'd impressed them in person and had been their second choice - and the feedback I gave was, "you never interviewed me, you turned me down before it got that far."

Collapse
auroratide profile image
Timothy Foster • Edited on

Lots of stories from the interviewee perspective here, so how about one from an interviewer perspective? It was my first time conducting a technical interview and going in I thought I had a game plan but totally forgot it all as soon as I walked into the door.

I forgot to introduce myself (didn't even give my name!), asked a data-structure question about Minecraft (never do that; not everybody knows what that even is!), and the rest I blocked out of my memory (thankfully!). It was good that I was not alone interviewing, and my more-experienced pair made the overall process better for the interviewee, and he gave me valuable feedback after it was over.

Learned a lot that day!

Collapse
polterguy profile image
Thomas Hansen

I don't think I have ever participated in a good job interview to be honest with you. Every time there's some rubbish question about QuickSort, palindromes, or whatever, completely unrelated to the task I'm supposed to actually do once I start. Then there's the usual idiotic questions about SOLID programming. The worst ones though are the "test monkey" interviews, where they send you a link to some website asking you 100 dumb questions, giving you 60 minutes to finish. The latter ones I just tell; "Thx guys, but I'm good. Good luck with the hiring though", as I smile and marks their emails as spam ...

Collapse
aneeqakhan profile image
Aneeqa Khan

Once I had interview in chinese firm, in first round two people interviewed me and right after (one hour long) first round, second round started and it was with their chinese CEO. He didnt understand English and I didnt know Chinese. He called his translator from China on Skype. 😄
In short, it was a mess. Skype call was getting disconnected I had to repeat things hundred of times. I end up getting the job offer but many things were wrong about them so I didnt join.

Collapse
foresthoffman profile image
Forest Hoffman

Oh jeez...

I was referred to a company by a previous colleague of mine. I sent in my CV, went through a few screenings and finally spoke with the hiring manager. They were very impressed up until they asked what my compensation expectations were. Considering my many years of experience with the exact stack they were hiring for, I shared my expectations (which were on the low end for that kind of position). Their tone IMMEDIATELY changed to very condescending and rude. "ahem well for someone of your...'experience'...you would be making a lot less than that", was the first thing out of their mouth. After a bit of a back and forth, they wanted to have an in-person interview.

I should have declined, but I thought by showing what I know I could change their mind. The interview was 5-6 people each asking me varying levels of whiteboarding questions. That said, all of the employees that interviewed me were nice!

Then came the hiring manager, the same one I spoke with over the phone. They asked me several standard questions and then said they would reach out with an answer after speaking with the team.

I got back to my car, and about 2 minutes after leaving the building I got an email telling me that I didn't get the position. At the time, I was frustrated that my time was wasted. But that was several years ago, so now it's a funny cautionary tale! I dodged a huge bullet. I would have been miserable working with that manager. They were obviously being petty, childish, and just looking to bump their interview quota.

Takeaways:

  • Red flag #0: "our staff intentionally take a lower wage, because they like working here" (yes, the manager actually said that to me 🤮)
  • Red flag #1: being told what I'm worth (it speaks to their inability to bring in or maintain good talent)
  • Red flag #2: the interviews with the team were entirely whiteboarding questions (especially ones that weren't even remotely related to the work I was supposedly being hired for)
  • Red flag #3: everyone but the manager was dressed business-casual (their personal presentation matched their unprofessional behavior, so at least they were consistent)
Collapse
aminmansuri profile image
hidden_dude

If I went to a company and everyone was dressed in anything more than business-casual I wouldn't want to work there.

But a lot of my experience is West Coast, and I'm not applying to law firms.

Collapse
codewander profile image
codewander

50% of the timed code screens that I have done over the years. It's a cold, crappy way to filter out people based on a contrived programming environment, testing an artificial skill that people build up just for job interviews. The problems are all over the place. The evaluation criteria is rarely explained. I think most code screens are meant to set an artificially high barrier when companies are not eager to hire, but are willing to passively take rock stars who might appear. Every time that I take a code screen, whether I pass or not, it continues to build up my anxiety about how random and arbitrary future code screens will be.

Collapse
shaneikennedy profile image
Shane Kennedy

Algorithms interview where I was given a question and then 2 minutes into asking questions and explaining my thinking (like normal algorithms interviews) I was told I had 3 minutes left on this problem before I needed to move on to the next. The interview was an hour long and continued with questions around classic algorithms where basically if you didn't have them memorised, you probably didn't finish even one of them

Collapse
xarop_pa_toss profile image
Ricardo Giro

Biggest telecom company in my country wanted someone to work in a small, very specialized team that dealt with maintenance and disaster recovery for it's largest clients (other very big companies).
After being interviewed by two intermediaries I finally talk to the team leader that drives the point that this is a stressful job and that, when something fails, we need to fix it asap.
Minimum wage. No thanks I'm out.

Kinda related, I finally got a job in IT today! Small company that deals with lots of different things, I'll have so much to learn :)

Collapse
alin11 profile image
Ali Nazari

I was interviewed for React position. The interviewer asked several questions about React. At the end, I asked "Why don't you ask any questions about JavaScript?" He said: "Because we are looking for React developer, not JavaScript."

Collapse
matthewbdaly profile image
Matthew Daly

One place I interviewed at, I got really bad vibes from quite quickly.

Turned out their business model was essentially like payday loans, but for businesses, which immediately made me think I didn't want to work there on moral grounds.

Then they mentioned that their entire platform, which I would have been maintaining, was built entirely by offshore developers and they were looking to bring it onshore. I don't have an issue with working with offshore developers, but the quality of the code base could easily be really awful, and outsourcing the development of a core part of your business strikes me as a very, very bad idea.

The recruiter phoned up afterwards and I told him in no uncertain terms that they needn't bother offering me the job because I wouldn't be accepting it. Didn't stop him badgering me repeatedly about it, even after I'd taken a better offer elsewhere - he didn't seem to grasp the idea of it being any issue other than "not enough money being offered".

Collapse
alinp25 profile image
Alin Pisica

I think it was a startup... Or planned to become one, not sure. I am invited to the interview, go to the other side of the town and everything happened in a 2 room apartment. When I entered the building I said "Ok, they are barely beginning, no big team, a 2 room apt works". I took the interview in the kitchen, while his wife was cooking dinner. I was expected to work in the living room, to a desk close to his and his 2 friends of him. I was thinking that the apt was work only but no, they were living there. I was not bothered about this, if everything worked well and the people would be nice working in an apartment with the people that live in it would not be a problem. The problems started during the interview, when I was asked not about my previous incomes, but I was asked about every project I worked on in the past, at every company, in great details. After the interview finished (an interview in which he barely knew how to properly formulate a question or answer my questions about the "company") he asked me if I want to work pro-bono for at least 3 months, after 3 being the moment when he would come with a salary proposal. Never heard from them again. I hope they are good.

Collapse
missamarakay profile image
Amara Graham

I showed up for the interview and security wouldn’t let me in because I “wasn’t on the schedule” and “Amara is an Indian man’s name” despite holding up my identification to the glass door.

This was my first interview for a software engineering internship. Ever.

They eventually let me in but it was clear no one from HR had communicated with this manager. He read my resume and could barely formulate questions to ask me. -2/10 experience, don’t recommmend.

Collapse
lucapette profile image
lucapette

Them: what's your fav data structure?
Me: well... that's... not food right? (laughing)
Them:...
Me: ¯_(ツ)
Them: Everyone hates this question but we ask because [insert here lots of gibberish]. Ready?
Me: ¯_(ツ)

Them: what's 2^16?
Me: OK this was fun
I walked away. The whole thing lasted 10 minutes.

Collapse
aminmansuri profile image
hidden_dude

2^16 is an age test.. anyone who programmed in the 80s would know it's 65536

Collapse
ca55idy profile image
ca55idy

I once got to an interview 20 minutes early and entered the address given to find a reception desk, I asked at the desk for the person I was told to inform id arrived and was told "we don't know who that is, go back into the foyer and open the door under the stairs, shout the name in there". When I opened the door it was a tiny room with about 20 young developers sat shoulder to shoulder (and I mean touching) to fit in the room and in front of there workstations. I got the attention of a guy who lead me back to the reception and told me to sit and wait. He disappeared off, and then as he passed to go back to his desk told me the interviewer would be with me in a minute. 25 minutes after the interview was supposed to start I was finally taken into the interview.
Q1. what do we do?
A. What I have researched and know about the company.

The interviewer shoots me an angry look then says "that's not us at all, we actually..." then proceeds to recite word for word what I have just given as my answer. Before requesting I leave and marching me to the door.

Collapse
highcenburg profile image
Vicente Reyes

I think I've mentioned this before - it was when the owner of an agency said I had enough experience and is qualified for the django gig at upwork but the recruitment person said I wasn't qualified lol

Collapse
theaccordance profile image
Joe Mainwaring • Edited on

I interviewed with Cameo and they had me to a pair coding session where I had to demonstrate how to build express.js functionality… without actually using express.js.

Those who were interviewing me were clearly more junior than I but acted like they were superior because they knew the test. After 10 minutes into the 60 minute pairing session I knew I wasn’t going to pass the test and that this would not be the right culture for me.

I immediately emailed the recruiter to withdraw my application after the meeting and never looked back. A month later, I would take a promotion internally which went in a different direction than individual contributor.

Collapse
panditapan profile image
Pandita

I had an interview where I honestly didn't prepare at all, but the funny thing about it was that I was rejected because when they asked me how I would build a landing page, I didn't use their preferred way. I was and currently am more of a desktop than a web developer so I kinda don't know all the current trendy web libraries, so I went with my outdated but reliable: I'd use Sass and Susy and be done with it! 😂

They also didn't like that I would do it in what? 3 weeks because they would do it in a week or less by using some library I can't remember. I was taking into account development and testing time based on the way my job at the time was (which was a bit slow) but it was a startup where you do things broken but fast. Not a good fit for me!

Anyway, I learned that I really needed to prepare better for a job interview and after that one, I haven't had interviews (yet) where my unpreparedness killed me hahaha

Collapse
ruannawrites profile image
Ruanna

Oh gosh. Def have a couple...

One was at a startup - I arrived early and no one was in the main office. I could overhear everyone was in a meeting in one of the adjacent rooms, so I took a seat near the entrance and waited. A few minutes passed and I overheard them mention that I was late, so I got up, stood in the doorway and clarified I had actually been here waiting. Super awk and great way to start an interview, lol. Then during the actual interview, the interviewer actually put his feet up on the desk during the whole interview. Needless to say, I did not pursue that opportunity further.

Another was for a panel interview. I walked into a room of 6 or 7 people sitting around a table and they instructed me to take a seat, handed me a list of questions, and said they would get started. Then they went around the room, each person asking one question robotically, with no feedback, conversation, or anything. It felt very impersonal and it was quite stressful... ahh interviews.

I will say, interviews are a great insight into what your actual experience would be like with that org/company. They've helped teach me that they're just as much about you interviewing them and finding the right mutual fit. :)

Collapse
anilkanthi profile image
ANIL KANTHI • Edited on

In-person it was my first ever interview right after finishing Masters. The interview was in a luxury hotel (for some reason) and I was waiting in the hall inside along with other candidates. I could see others go into a room in the middle of the hallway and come out after half an hour or so. I went in, it was a very tiny, suffocating room with a chair for me and there was a board of 4-5 interviewers sitting across the desk from me and they asked me specific questions I had no answers to. Many awkward silences when I couldn't answer back then as they creeped the hell out of me by asking questions in very harsh tones. As it went, I was walking out of the hotel with total embarrassment on my first ever interview in a city I had been to only for this reason!

Collapse
rohithv07 profile image
Rohith V • Edited on

My experience : Recently I got interviewed and at first it started with an online assessment.
WEEK 1:
Typical OA questions. Then I got into the next round which was a full day coding round.
WEEK 2:
A series of problem solving questions were asked back to back immediately after solving a particular problem.
I was a Java guy and I even brought this into their notice that I am from Java background. They were fine with it. But when the coding started, they asked me to code in C program. When I again told, they allowed me to use Java but do not use any Collections, other functions, sorting function have to be done on our own. But somehow I was having some practice on implementing quicksort, so sorting was ok, but since Collections should not be used made a bit difficult.Then on the evening of the same day some other behavioral kind of questions.

WEEK 3:
Then again the next week one day full project coding round.
It was like they give a use case, we have to do backend, frontend, database design everything. They allowed to use any framework. And the sameway, they again asked some behavioral and techinal question at the end of the day.

WEEK 4:
Then for the next round it was fully technical about 30 min.

WEEK 5:
But then I got a mail that I am shortlisted for the project coding round for a full day again. I mailed them saying that I have already completed it and gave every details but yet again they have to conduct this round for me.Ok desparate for the switch I attended it.
It was supposed to be project coding round like giving a use case, do the backend, frontend, database design. But they asked me to implement hashmap, hashset, binary search tree etc etc etc... HOLY!!!!!!!!!!!
I thought of ending at that moment when I was asked to implement this . But yet, I need a switch so I continued and selected for the next round.

A GAP AFTER WEEK 5 :
Then came the next round where I have to visit one of their hub office which was some 3-4 hr from my area.There was no confirmation given from them for this interview. And on that day, I just woke up, sat on my desk, opened my system and was continuing with my company work. Then the interviewer called me, where are you?.😂
Wow, I said I am in my home and no confirmation given for me to attend this interview.
He said "Hold on a minute" and he said "Yeah it was a problem from the HR.".
Another WOW moment. He asked me to come to the office, which is 3-4 hr from my home. OK, I need a switch, let's go there.
I went to the hub office, attended the interview, it went well and he said will be called for the next interview. WHAT AGAIN, ANOTHER INTERVIEW.

I FORGOT ABOUT THE WEEK :
For the next round, the interviewer starts like he is some monster in his field, he is everything and there is no other one greater than him. Ok thats great.
Then he gave me a math problem to do. A MATH PROBLEM...
I need to prove a statement which he gave with all the steps. Not just assuming, he need the real proof. Not just taking some example and proving, he need the real proof.
I was somehow doing it and at the moment, he told "Stop looking at the internet, I don't want any answer from the internet".
But what, looking at the internet. I paused for a minute and he said, "I don't want answers from internet". Don't know why he said that, till now I haven't done such things and gave answer only for those I have a knowledge. I didn't continued with the MATH PROOF thing and I said I can't continue.
Then he said, OK.. Lets us do a coding problem.
I need to sort the array based on its frequency. WOW Cool problem, just take count using hashmap, then use a custom comparator to compare based on the frequency and sort the array. Pretty straightforward for me.
So I started explaining my logic, with an example and he quickly bursted out.
"STOP... I don't want to know any of your logic, If you can do, do it. Don't tell anything. How much time do you need and do in C language".
C language, I said I am a Java guy and this was the problem I was facing from the very end, I communicated this very clearly with them and they were OK with it, yet they need me to code the problem in C language.
He allowed me to code the problem in C language, but again no Collection Framework. THANKS...
But that's OK, but the thing he shouted and said like he don't want to hear my thought process was very heart touching one and I said I don't want to continue this round and stopped the interview.
And on the next day, some other interviewer called me to schedule a meeting and I told I don't want to continue with this company and I am stopping this process.
He don't know what happened and he stopped my process.

Long 3 months, conducted all the different rounds they have in their hand, not ready to even know the candidates feelings, his thoughts. I was looking for the switch badly, so I just gone with the process till the moment which effects my self respect and mental health and made up in my mind that I will not in my life will interview with this company.

And career update : I am joining a product based company this week, who is a leader in database services.

Collapse
theoriginalbpc profile image
Sarah Bartley

I've had a couple. In one interview, the interviewer walked out in the middle of the interview to go talk with her co-workers for 5-10 minutes around the coffee machine while I stayed in her office. She then returned to finish the interview. At another interview, the interviewer made me wait 10-15 minutes to start the interview while he was have different small talk conversations with everyone else in the waiting room.

Collapse
simeg profile image
Simon Egersand 🎈

I was meeting with the two founders of this startup business. One of them greeted me and was very friendly. We sat down in a small room and awaited the other founder. Soon after he enters the room, talking loudly on his phone. He ends the call, shakes my hand, sits down, puts his feet up on the table and asks "So, what can you do for us?".

I did not get the job, nor did I want to work for that man. One year later I get an email saying they are disbanding. I couldn't help to smile.

Collapse
rodney_brazil profile image
Rodney Brazil

The worst job interviews for me were always the ones where you respond to a job listing with your resume, get an interview call, then show up and it's an hour-long presentation trying get get you to join their multi-level marketing scheme.

Collapse
bherrero profile image
Borja Herrero

I had a first interview in a company that was looking for a frontend developer but also would be in charge of customer support. They thought I was great for the position but I was lacking better spoken English to be attending customers, so they told me they would keep me in mind for future positions.

A year later, their HR department calls me saying they have the perfect role for me. I get to the interview with 3 people from their team and they start asking me backend questions. I had some experience dealing with WP and Magento but backend wasn't my thing. Then, the "senior" developer stands up, laughs to my face and says: "If you have no experience with backend why the fuck would you apply to this position?"

I was so in shock that I wasn't even able to say that I never applied, they called me.

Collapse
adam_cyclones profile image
Adam Crockett

It's too painful don't make me re-live them!

Collapse
jaecktec profile image
Constantin

For a "duales studium" basically you work for the company in your semester vacation and do your profession school. After that you usually work 2 years for that company.

They sat 5 people in front of me and started asking questions. Mid term I noticed that they only offered a 1 year internship wit the chance on this position.

Well I left the interview

Collapse
titusnjuguna profile image
Tito • Edited on

I think this is mischievous. I once interviewed for a microfinance institution. The job advert was:

Looking for Software Engineer Intern to join our engineering team

Here is the funny part:

  • Arrived earlier and the offices are not opened, minutes later the offices are opened.
  • I finally meet the interviewers. All with zero experience in software development.
  • After some few questions, I got concerned about their development team. So I had to ask, what's the size of the team I got to work with.
  • Their response was 'you will be working alone, since we don't have a team for now'. Now , this is a red flag. You are suppose to engineer a whole financial system alone within a timeline of 1 month with a compensation of an Intern.
  • To avoid getting hired there , I had to quote salary for a mid-level Software engineer.
Collapse
factordiceomar profile image
OmarC

What about the time I got into a good cop/bad cop interview? It was for a local college instructor position. I was interviewing with the HR lady (who looked like a runway model) and some manager. The manager, the "good cop", asked me about my professional achievements, what programming languages I knew, and he seemed impressed with my answers. The HR lady, the "bad cop", asked questions like "Why do you want to leave your current job?" "Will your current company make you a counter offer?" The whole interview was aimed to portray me as someone who was just looking for an offer to get a raise and my current position.

After the interview I was told that "they had other candidates to interview, and I would hear back from them if I was chosen". I never did, and thankfully not. What they were looking for was someone to help get their online computer courses content. That meant, I was to prepare the content itself, which meant hours upon hours of research, and once set up, they would profit from that work for years from the work I did once.

Collapse
canmingir profile image
Can Mingir

...and I took the Lincoln tunnel instead, true story

Collapse
peterwitham profile image
Peter Witham

I feel if I answer "The next one" I might almost always be right? :) Given what appears to be the state of interviews in tech over the past couple of years.

Collapse
craftyminer1971 profile image
CraftyMiner1971

I haven't had an interview for a programming job, but I once had an interview where I had more experience in having interviews than the guy who saw me as a prospective client.