Famous Last Words: Interviews Gone Wrong

Interview at a job fair.

You have just finished a great interview, and feel confident that you’ve got the job. Just as the interviewer begins discussing your salary requirements, you decide to inject a little humor into the situation and say, “If the pay is right, I’d travel with the carnival.”

As the interviewer quickly ushers you out of his office, it occurs to you that you lost the job because of the stupid comment you just made. Interview situations like this happen more often than you think. Not convinced? Here are some other famous last words uttered by candidates in an interview, according to Funny2.com:

  • Candidate explained that her long-term goal was to replace the interviewer.
  • Interviewee asked interviewer, “Why aren’t you in a more interesting business?”
  • Applicant told interviewer that if he was hired, he would demonstrate his company loyalty to by tattooing company name on his forearm.
  • Another applicant interrupted the interview to call her therapist for advice on how to answer specific interview questions.
  • A candidate, towards the end of the interview, confided in the interviewer that he “knew who was responsible for most of his troubles.”
  • When asked for references, the candidate asked, “Why do you want references?”

You can see why these candidates did not get the job. Here are questions you should ask at the end of an interview that will either help you get the job, or at least a second interview.

  • Will the actual work and job responsibilities provide gratification, fulfillment and challenge? Asking this question will help you get a clear sense of what an actual day would be like. Additionally, the interviewer will see that you are serious about getting the job.
  • What are the boss's strengths and weaknesses? This question can be tough to answer, and it's best saved for after the job offer has been extended.
  • How many people have held the position in the past several years? Knowing how many people have been in your job and why they left can offer you great insights. You'll want to know if they were promoted or quit altogether.

If you want more interview tips or job search advic, visit Military.com’s Veteran Jobs Center.

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