Job Seekers: Prepare For Bad Interview Questions

One of the guarantees I’d be willing to make with any job seeker is that you’ll be asked unusual, strange, weird, and possibly illegal questions during an interview. I’ve surveyed several audiences of job seekers over the years and, in the majority of cases, more than half the audience was asked what appeared to be an illegal, personal question. However, equally concerning – and unfair to job seekers – are the strange questions that are asked. The reasons for this appear to be several:

Related: Favorite Job Interview Questions May Not Be Best – Part I

  • Many interviewers base their questions of some “favorite question” they think makes it certain they’ll make a good hiring decision.
  • Some interviewers believe that asking “clever” questions make the candidates uneasy and shake them from their “canned” answers.
  • Most interviewers, particularly the hiring managers, conduct interviews infrequently.
  • Despite the popularity of interviewing skills as a training topic, the majority of people conducting interviews are untrained.
The bottom line is that there is a very high likelihood you will be asked bad questions by an untrained interviewer. Based on my informal polls of audiences ranging from college students to active job seekers, it is close to certainty. In a previous series of articles, I analyzed the “favorite” interview questions of several executives. I also provided how some of the bad questions could be answered. That is the answer to this reality. To address the problem of bad questions, you simply need to be prepared. And even though you cannot prepare for all the possible bad questions out there, you’ll discover that if you’ve practiced providing great answers to good questions, you’ll also discover that you’ve learned how to answer even some of the worst of the bad questions. Here’s one: “What color are you?” Here’s a challenge for you – a learning game filled with examples of bad questions, with opportunities identify the answers you should give to these questions – and the ones you want to avoid. Click on the following picture to take the challenge:

Related Posts

How To Create SMART Goals Set And Achieve SMART Goals Promotion Killers: Weak Goals

About the author

Jim Schreier is a management consultant with a focus on management, leadership, including performance-based hiring and interviewing skills. Visit his website at     Disclosure: This post is sponsored by a CAREEREALISM-approved expert. You can learn more about expert posts here. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

When most people think of Nike, they think of shoes, retail stores, and, of course, athletes. That's all true, but there's more. Behind Nike's walls, you'll find the doers and thinkers who design, create, and innovate every day. There are also data scientists who discover and leverage athlete insights to create the future of sport.

You might be surprised to learn about the impact you can have in Data & Analytics at Nike versus at a major tech giant. Nike employees get to work on a wide array of challenges, so if you're obsessed with math, science, computers, and/or data, and you love sport, these stories may inspire you to work at Nike.

SHOW MORE Show less

Employee loyalty is something every company longs for. It's estimated employee turnover costs as much as 130-200% of an employee's salary. When a talented, knowledgeable, trained employee leaves, it's bad for business. And, when lots of them leave, it can be the kiss of death.

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the interview situation one of our viewers, Remi submitted. He was in an interview and was asked the question: How many cows are there in Canada right now? - What a weird question but this is a technique that some hiring managers are using these days.

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Kevin submitted. He is a college student who's working a part time job to make ends meet. The manager/owner of the company has become a micro-manager who watches him work on camera and reads his company emails. A bit over the top wouldn't you say?

SHOW MORE Show less