Bad Job Interviews Also Exist

In a perfect world, all HR managers and recruiters will be good at their jobs, and they will use only suitable questions when interviewing job applicants. However, we do not live in a perfect world.

It is  not uncommon (especially in small and middle sized companies) to leave the room after the interview and say: “This person was not qualified to lead an interview with me. Some questions made no sense”.

Sometimes it may be reality, and sometimes just your opinion. Anyway, there are definitely some questions that can we can call bad, without any doubt. Let’s have a look at them right now.


Illegal questions

Any question that relates to your age, marital status, race, or religion, can be deemed illegal according to US laws. I am speaking about the following questions:

  • Do you have any children?
  • Do you plan to have children?
  • Where does your father come from?
  • What is your religion?
  • Are you gay?

Such questions such not appear in any good interview….

Unrelated interview questions

Second group represents that questions that are unrelated to the job. Let’s imagine a job interview for a position of a secretary. Some bad interview questions for this position include, but are not limited to:

  • Have you ever managed a group of people?
  • Tell me something about process management?
  • What does an integer mean in Java?
  • If I gave you 1 million US Dollars right now, what stocks will you buy?
  • Tell us about your leadership skills.

Secretaries do not deal with Java, or with process management. They need neither management nor leadership skills. Answers to these questions will not help the employer to decide whether or not to hire a job candidate, and asking them will lead to nothing but confusion….


Very personal

Personal questions are not illegal by law, but an interviewer can easily touch the job applicant with them. Let’s have a look at them right now.

  • Imagine that there is a need to work overtime, but your child. Would you stay at work?
  • Are you open to start a relationship with your boss, or your colleague?
  • Do you plan to study in the near future, or is this basic education enough for you?
  • Do you have any real experience with this job?

Questions that are very personal can lead to a hostile atmosphere in an interview, which won’t help neither the interviewers, nor the job seekers….


If you are an employer and plan to conduct interviews, have a look at the list of questions and think about them for a moment. Are they legal? Do they make sense? Will they actually help you to choose the best person for the job?

If you are a job seeker, and happen to hear an unprofessional question in your job interview (or even an illegal one), consider it a bad sign, and think twice before accepting a job offer with the company.

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