15 stupid questions you’ll be asked at a job interview

"Are you single? Do your co-workers like you? How much money do you want?" Interviews can be exasperating.

Sadaf Fayyaz October 23, 2010
Yesterday, I went for an interview at a software company, as I had applied for the position of a full-time writer.

I was quite happy. I was supposed to reach the place at 3pm and I arrived at 2.45pm.

The interview started and went on for about twenty minutes. This was not my first interview. I have been interviewed at several places.

As the panel continues to ask me moronic question after moronic question, an idea for a blog post began to form in my mind.  I tried to make a list of the fifteen most stupid questions that interviewers ask you. The list could go up to thirty questions, but ET might not take such a lengthy blog, so I am sticking to fifteen.

I am sure I can expect many emails and angry responses from HR recruitment people after this post.

Q1: Where do you see yourself in five years?

Do you know where your company will be in five years? Sorry, I didn’t know that you were looking to hire an astrologer.

Q2.  Describe yourself in three words.

Why do you want a three-word description? If I say I am bold, smart and beautiful, will you be happy with that? Which three words do you want to hear--hard working, motivated and intelligent? You’ve gone through my resume, but still insist on asking me to describe myself. Just read the document carefully and you might find your answer there.

Q3. Are you ready to work overtime?

If you advertised your timings to be 9-5, don’t suddenly change your mind. If I say yes, it wouldn’t make any sense, and if I say no, I will be considered lazy. Are you ready to pay me for overtime?

Q4. What is your biggest weakness/worst quality?

Oh my God! Shall I really tell you my biggest weakness? Ice cream is my biggest weakness. Mobilink asked my brother the same question, after assuring him they wouldn’t share the information with anybody else. Are you guys making a database of candidates’ weaknesses? What if something I consider a strength looks like a weakness to someone else? If I say I’m a workaholic, it’s strength to me, but a weakness to others. Do people really discuss their weaknesses in public?

Q5. Can you manage to work in teams and groups?

My resume states very clearly that my skills include leadership ability, conflict resolution and team management skills. Didn’t you read it? Secondly, what if I am asked to work with a group of lazy dudes who don’t even bother to work much? It depends on the team. Anyway, were politicians ever asked about their leadership skills?

Q6. What are your salary expectations?

I applied for this job after reading about the salary you advertised. Are you trying to avoid paying that amount by asking me that? Anyway, my salary expectation is Rs200,000. Thank you so much for caring about me.

Q7. Do you mind if I call your previous employers?

Either I voluntarily left my job, or I got fired. Neither situation could have made my employers happy. Which ex-boss is going to speak highly of me?

Q8. What did you do in your last job?

I was hired as a plumber by the previous company after I finished my MBA.

Q9. Why shall we hire you?

So that I can steal your office equipment and break the office furniture.

Q10. Are you married, divorced, separated, or single?

This question annoys most female candidates. I’ve heard friends complaining about it too. Why are you interested in knowing my marital status? I am not a contestant for Miss World, for which I’d need to be single.

Q11. Who are you living with these days?

In Pakistan, where girls live with their families, this question doesn’t make any sense. I am living with my pets.

Q12. What do your co-workers say about you?

Some people suggested that I should dye my hair. Others said that I should use a glossy lipstick with thick eye liner.

Q13. What are your expectations from this job?

That I shouldn’t have to come to work on time. I also expect diet drinks and low calorie food for lunch. Also, I want an AC in my own room.

Q14. Why do you want to work for us?

I want it because I have to buy new clothes and cell phone.

Q15. Why are you leaving your current job?

Because I love giving job interviews.
Sadaf Fayyaz A freelance journalist, photographer, blogger and writer's take on life, culture, media and everything else.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


Sami saayer | 12 years ago | Reply couldn't agree more with anon and wasio. And no I'm not from hr either. From your rant it looks like you think once you have sent your resume you have answered everything. You lack serious professional maturity our so it appears. The only thing that goes in your favor here is that these questions are too stereotypical and interviewers now are more creative. nonetheless, stupid article.
Muhammad Faizan | 12 years ago | Reply Great Miss Sadaf Please only enjoy this article
Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ