Weirdest interview question?

  • I knew about the manhole cover thing but never bothered to comment because it wasn't worth the time to type a rep*.....

    The question comes from pre-internet trivia days and was used as a gauge as to whether someone displayed the aptitude of an engineer. It's one of those things that the average person was not likely to think about to discuss unless they were predisposed to the mindset.

    A lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine.

  • how many pairs of white shoelaces can i sell in canada.


    i was asked that question after it being prefaced with we would like to see how you think, so please, out loud, tell us how you would tackle this problem.


    i went on for some time about demand curves, market saturation, distrubution channels and so on.

    the interviewer said, "I still need an answer.  Give me a number." 

    i asked if this was a literal or theorehtical question to which he replied, "I need a number."


    I told him zero, I was not a citizen of Canada, nor am I liscened to do business in Canada.


    I was hired.  I still dont know what shoe lace sales in Canada has to do with data marts.

  • Great answer!!!!

    That's probably why you got hired. Thinking business in practical terms.

  • Maybe they just wanted to know how good you are at making up BS when someone asks you a really stupid question.  Probably a good skill for a salesman to have.


  • It would not be a bad idea to have some of these questions thought out before your next interview! I was discussing this with my wife a couple of nights ago, I'd probably go for Fozzie Bear for the Muppets (I like bad jokes) or Waldorf & Statler (heckler), I'd definitely go for a spoiled rotten poodle for animal (just like our standard poodle). I knew the manhole cover, so no worries there. The selling shoe laces in Canada? I'm not a salesman nor sales analyst, I'd state that and leave it there. I can project disk space usage or hard drive free space once I have a few months of baseline info, but otherwise it's a null question for me. But I will remember the "I'm not a Canadian citizen" for future reference!

    But some of the questions that I've seen from Microsoft and Google interviews? Forget it. I don't want to work there bad enough to go through that garbage. I can pass the Mensa test without any problems, but there are limits to how many hoops through which I'll jump. Give me questions related to the job that you want me to fill, give me a hands-on evaluation if you have any doubts. And unless you're an expert, I might show you a thing or two that you haven't seen before.

    [font="Arial"]Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves or we know where we can find information upon it. --Samuel Johnson[/font]

  • I tend to agree with you, Wayne. No time for silly "how do you think" questions. But that's why I wouldn't work for Microsoft: I don't fit in. They're looking for the type of person that loves those questions and the challenge. It make s a good developer, or at least a good MS/Google developer.

    I'm a production guy and I like that. I think after a decade and a half in this business, I've learned not to stray too far into other areas.

Viewing 6 posts - 61 through 65 (of 65 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic. Login to reply