Jump to content
  • Sign up now

    Registration is quick and easy 

Interview disaster


MarkW
 Share

Recommended Posts

We've been interviewing fairly intensively over the last couple of weeks for five positions that we want to fill in the lab and the office. Most of the candidates have been the usual type that give no cause for concern - very personable and intelligent and clearly perfectly capable of slotting straight in - but one was a bit more, well... special.


She had applied for the role of Scientific Writer, for which the job description we put out stressed that concise and accurate writing free from errors was of paramount importance. Our suspicions were first aroused when she submitted a CV and covering letter brimming with typographical and grammatical errors, but we decided to interview her anyway as we also had a more junior vacancy to fill for which she may have been suitable.


Her interview was on Friday, and it was immediately apparent when she walked in that she was a force of nature. She wasted no time in telling us how well she had done in all her previous jobs, and that she had only moved on from each of them because they didn't challenge her sufficiently. She talked at us for almost an hour, asking for a glass of water half way through because her voice was going, which she downed in one before carrying on.


By this time our QA Manager Lisa was struggling to keep a straight face, not least because the interviewee kept calling her Julie. The final straw was when she asked my wife (co-Director and co-owner of the company) "As an employee, how do you find working for your husband?" at which point she and Lisa both lost it completely and the pair of them collapsed laughing. Completely unfazed, the candidate just saw this as us all getting along famously and carried on.


Interview over, we said we'd "let her know" whilst showing her out and still trying desperately not to laugh. Twenty minutes later she was back, asking if someone could call her a taxi. Having turned up by taxi to a facility that is in the middle of nowhere (five miles down country lanes from the nearest town) she had spent 20 minutes standing on our car park, staring through the bars of a massive security gate that only opens if you drive up to it, waiting for one to happen along.


Now we just need to decide what role to offer her. :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At least you stayed awake during the interview. I had an interviewer doze off on me.

 

Bloody hell! :lol:


The strangest interview I ever had was about 20 years ago at the biowarfare unit at Porton Down. One of the interviewers just glared at me throughout with his arms folded, whilst sitting underneath the most ridiculous syrup I've ever seen - it wasn't even on straight! For almost an hour I just wanted to lean across the table and straighten it up for him. :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

bahahaha I don't think I could have contained myself during that :lol:


The weirdest interview I've ever had was 18 year old me being interviewed by 4 men I had never met (mid 30's to early 50s) , in a 6'x9' glorified cupboard - with no window and a desk squeezed in. They then actually ask me, 35min into the interview, how I felt about working in a "male dominated environment".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

... whilst sitting underneath the most ridiculous syrup I've ever seen - it wasn't even on straight! For almost an hour I just wanted to lean across the table and straighten it up for him. :lol:

Sorry, can you explain this to me? I feel like I've missed something.


Anyone here who's met me at a meet will probably not be surprised that in any interview, you don't have to pull teeth to get me to blather on :oops:

I mean it's a trait that's worked out pretty well for me as I think I've been offered 90% of jobs I've interviewed for, and kept in touch with most previous bosses as mates, but I always walk away from them thinking "Why don't you just shut your gob Gin, jeez..." :?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

... whilst sitting underneath the most ridiculous syrup I've ever seen - it wasn't even on straight! For almost an hour I just wanted to lean across the table and straighten it up for him. :lol:

Sorry, can you explain this to me? I feel like I've missed something.


 

 

A syrup is a wig (Cockney rhyming slang: syrup of fig). Also known as an Irish (Irish jig). :D


 

Syrup.jpeg.7f5c8106dd8c7b645dfd716b56b351ab.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Every workplace needs an office loonatic! Hire her for comedy value.

 

We've already got enough with the one who blew herself up last summer. :roll:

 

Whoa Whoa! This is a tale which needs telling!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Every workplace needs an office loonatic! Hire her for comedy value.

 

We've already got enough with the one who blew herself up last summer. :roll:

 

Whoa Whoa! This is a tale which needs telling!

 

It's on the forum somewhere,I remember reading about it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



We've already got enough with the one who blew herself up last summer. :roll:

 

Whoa Whoa! This is a tale which needs telling!

 

It's on the forum somewhere,I remember reading about it.

 

Junior member of lab staff managed to open an autoclave mid-cycle and it went off like a bomb, ejecting molten agar and shards of red-hot glass into the air. We had an air ambulance on site within minutes, closely followed by a paramedic car and an ambulance. They whizzed her off to hospital, but by a miracle she only had two superficial facial blisters which healed without trace. Anyway, as it was an accident involving a pressure vessel we reported it to the HSE, who lost interest as soon as the employee admitted that she had completely disregarded all her training and all our Standard Operating Procedures. Finding herself staring at a summary dismissal for gross breach of Health and Safety she disclosed that she was on medication that was affecting her ability to concentrate (she had written off two cars in own-fault accidents in the previous few weeks). We sent her to our Occupation Health consultants for a full review to see if her medication could be changed or if she was medically unfit to work in a lab, during which we put her on office-based duties. They changed her medication, we gradually moved her back into the lab, and she's been fine ever since.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



Whoa Whoa! This is a tale which needs telling!

 

It's on the forum somewhere,I remember reading about it.

 

Junior member of lab staff managed to open an autoclave mid-cycle and it went off like a bomb, ejecting molten agar and shards of red-hot glass into the air. We had an air ambulance on site within minutes, closely followed by a paramedic car and an ambulance. They whizzed her off to hospital, but by a miracle she only had two superficial facial blisters which healed without trace. Anyway, as it was an accident involving a pressure vessel we reported it to the HSE, who lost interest as soon as the employee admitted that she had completely disregarded all her training and all our Standard Operating Procedures. Finding herself staring at a summary dismissal for gross breach of Health and Safety she disclosed that she was on medication that was affecting her ability to concentrate (she had written off two cars in own-fault accidents in the previous few weeks). We sent her to our Occupation Health consultants for a full review to see if her medication could be changed or if she was medically unfit to work in a lab, during which we put her on office-based duties. They changed her medication, we gradually moved her back into the lab, and she's been fine ever since.

That's really decent of you Mark.

Under the circumstances gross misconduct and out the door would have been the easy option.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's really decent of you Mark.

Under the circumstances gross misconduct and out the door would have been the easy option.

 

:stupid: Thought exactly the same. Top stuff. And less likely to hurt herself or others so more win

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's really decent of you Mark.

Under the circumstances gross misconduct and out the door would have been the easy option.

 

:stupid: Thought exactly the same. Top stuff. And less likely to hurt herself or others so more win

 

Aye, I guess I do have some decent qualities under this crass exterior... :lol:


Over the last couple of years I have done something similar with two other members of staff, both of whom were catastrophically unsuited to the roles they were appointed to. In both cases they had become disruptive as a consequence of being out of their depth, and one of them had made some serious cock-ups that were starting to cause financial and reputational damage to the business. Both times the management team voted unanimously to dismiss them, which would definitely have been the easiest thing to do, but after a bit of cajoling I got them to agree to offer them completely new roles.


One of them has been in her new role for just over 18 months and is flying - she's really got stuck into it and is totally transformed as an employee, and is now a hugely valuable member of the team. The other has only recently moved into his new role, but indications so far and feedback from his colleagues are that he is also showing massive improvement.


If all this makes me sound like some sort of saint, I'm not: there have been a couple of times in my career when I didn't treat people as well as I should have done, and all these years later I still regret it. One of the things I have never regretted in life is kindness - even in situations where the other party didn't really deserve it - so that's how I try to do things, even if it causes more hassle in the short term.


:thumb:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You sound like my boss [mention]MarkW[/mention]


I've gone to him before raging about some cockup someone's done and how it's not the first time etc and we need to get rid. He replied with " we will give him the opportunity to get better, just like I gave you the opportunity to work for me" :lol:


Not that he has any compunction about firing someone. His nickname in his old factory days was heartless Hartley and he technically sacked his own daughter once :shock:

Link to comment
Share on other sites



It's on the forum somewhere,I remember reading about it.

 

Junior member of lab staff managed to open an autoclave mid-cycle and it went off like a bomb, ejecting molten agar and shards of red-hot glass into the air. We had an air ambulance on site within minutes, closely followed by a paramedic car and an ambulance. They whizzed her off to hospital, but by a miracle she only had two superficial facial blisters which healed without trace. Anyway, as it was an accident involving a pressure vessel we reported it to the HSE, who lost interest as soon as the employee admitted that she had completely disregarded all her training and all our Standard Operating Procedures. Finding herself staring at a summary dismissal for gross breach of Health and Safety she disclosed that she was on medication that was affecting her ability to concentrate (she had written off two cars in own-fault accidents in the previous few weeks). We sent her to our Occupation Health consultants for a full review to see if her medication could be changed or if she was medically unfit to work in a lab, during which we put her on office-based duties. They changed her medication, we gradually moved her back into the lab, and she's been fine ever since.

That's really decent of you Mark.

Under the circumstances gross misconduct and out the door would have been the easy option.

 


Bets she’s got a nice pair or hooters, bit of eye candy for the office .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This threads properly giving me the warm and fuzzies :D You lot really are lovely under the tough biker shell.


In a previous role, I was put on a certain medication to try to stop my migraines. What the doctor didn't consider is that these tablets tended to drop your blood pressure a tad; not so great for someone who already has low blood pressure normally.


Feinted in the office and they ended up calling an ambulance to the building for me. My boss was Fuming!


My doc then told me I wasn't allowed to drive for a week until they moved me on to another med and let my body settle. More fury from the boss.


In my leaving meeting I was told that I had taken more time off sick than he had in the last 15 years and that wasn't how they did it at that company.


P.s. This is the same company where, while riding into work one morning, I came off my bike. My first blathered comments after some lovely person helped me up off the road were "I need to ring my boss" and, still with tears of shock I did just that.

His first line after I explained that I'd just come off my bike was "What time do you think you'll be in?"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyone here who's met me at a meet will probably not be surprised that in any interview, you don't have to pull teeth to get me to blather on :oops:

I mean it's a trait that's worked out pretty well for me as I think I've been offered 90% of jobs I've interviewed for, and kept in touch with most previous bosses as mates, but I always walk away from them thinking "Why don't you just shut your gob Gin, jeez..." :?

 

I am the same! I start answering then i end up tellimg a sub-story and going all round the houses. Actually had an interview and a second stage last week and dropped in that i was definitely a bit nosy and that i electrocuted myself several times on a kitchen plug socket. Told myself in the car to not be weird. I just cant help myself. Only needed to be normal for half an hour but no hahaa


It was an internal interview and the 2nd stage was on Friday, so went straight from that to night shift and spent the next 12 hours and subsequent two nights low key raging at myself for being an idiot


I got offered the job monday morning hahahaha

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a similar problem when I give presentations at conferences: my brain is pretty evenly split between the half that can only think of totally inappropriate things to say and is dying to say them to see what sort of reaction they get, and the half that is desperately trying to suppress the other half and keep things on track. It doesn't help that I have a very particular sense of humour and don't take myself remotely seriously, which in an auditorium full of rather dry and pompous 'experts' can have some interesting consequences.


A couple of years ago I was in the US to give a presentation about my company to a room full of conservative and God-fearing southerners. Someone asked me what background a couple of our key staff had, and when I got on to our Facility Manager I said that after graduating with a degree in environmental science she had had a varied career that included financial services and working as a police intelligence analyst. Then the itch started in my brain, and before I could stop myself I'd added: "I know that police intelligence sounds like an oxymoron - a bit like rap music or Christian rock."


:lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use Privacy Policy Guidelines We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.