I have had the good fortune to interview at many companies in my career. While most hiring managers were professional, a few of them did things that were clearly against the law. I will not divulge their identity, but these examples are based on true experiences.
1. The interview had gone pretty well and no red flags had come up. At the end of the interview the hiring manager who was wearing a crucifix asked me “What religion do you belong to?” I answered the truth and apparently that was the right answer. I got the second interview. I had a feeling if I didn’t answer that she would deny me the second interview.
2. The day was pretty cold so I wasn’t surprised when people were a little confused. It can be stressful driving in Chicago when the weather is bad. Anyway, the interview was going well and then he said “You are saying all the right answers, but I don’t like them.” I was thrown back. I asked what answers he would like but he couldn’t articulate that either.
3. The interview went well and they asked about what salary I would like. I said I don’t know so I allowed them to set the number. They said a number and I felt it was a little low so I asked for a little more. I rarely ask for more money but they were clearly low-balling me. We agreed at a price and I left. I found out from the recruiter that they went with the other candidate because he was cheaper. Ok that happens. Three months later I see the job posting again. The recruiter calls me and says that the other guy didn’t work out. He said they spent money to train him but it didn’t work. He asked if I was still interested. I had a job at that point and I said that if they wanted me they would have to offer me what I was making in the current job. He came back and said that the manager makes that salary and they can’t do that. This company was losing market share and it was clear to me why. You don’t get the best people by quibbling about salary. The kicker is that the recruiter said it was just a few hundred dollars difference.
4. I interviewed with a company and they liked me but the recruiter said they liked another candidate more. Great, good luck to him. Well it turns out that 3 months later the recruiter called again about the job. Apparently there was a legal problem and the guy had to leave. The subcontractor lost the contract so all their people had to be pulled from the site. If I had gotten the first job, I would be without a job now. I interviewed and got the job. I got a job offer I couldn’t refuse later and so I left. A year later the recruiter calls again saying that the company couldn’t find anyone who did a great job like I did and would I come back. What would you do?
5. The interview was going well and the hiring manager asked if I had any issues committing to the job for several years. I said that I prefer long-term employment and that was my goal. He said that most computer people seem to move every six months. I said there were many reasons for this and that is typical for the field. I didn’t get this job. My gf said that when I said that, that was what he remembered not my promise to stay.