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Old 11-23-2015, 07:41 PM
 
Location: Central IL
15,251 posts, read 8,543,297 times
Reputation: 35677

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Quote:
Originally Posted by convextech View Post
I had one interview that was a meal, and I was stuck on the inside of the booth squeezed in next to another guy, while two others across from me bombarded me with questions. They were taking turns, so they got to eat. I never touched my plate and felt silly asking for a box.


They had flown me from ATL to SEA and back in the same day, so by the time the interview was over, I was starving. Thank goodness I had a little time to grab a bite before my return flight.


That was also the longest day I have ever had. I flew out of ATL on a 6am and didn't get back til 4am, wearing heels and a suit with Spanx underneath the entire time.


I learned a lot of lessons on that day.
OMG - I did the same thing - flew from Chicago to LA...plane was late - didn't get to the hotel until 1:00...interviews started at 8:00. The whole day I met with at least 4 different people at a time...never a break from interviewing, even for lunch! I'm an introvert and I was so wiped out I could barely make it to the airport that afternoon - I bet I'd talked to 25 people that day!

But it would have been soooo nice to just have lunch by myself - I know they don't want to waste time and may think YOU don't want to have to eat alone, but it would have helped me recharge. But if you have to do it, pick easy to eat food! Nothing that can spill, or something you have to pick apart like crab, etc. And probably better to pick something you're familiar with - you don't need surprises, you need comfort food - ha!
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:42 PM
 
15,065 posts, read 19,710,115 times
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I see the interview meal time as a time to relax and get to know each other.
Same as going out to eat with co-workers.

You get to see other side of people when you let them relax and have a friendly conversation.
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:51 PM
 
1,040 posts, read 891,968 times
Reputation: 2815
I don't like them either.

I had one where they took me to breakfast before the interview (IHOP). I was in a different time zone, so it felt like lunchtime for me by then. (My hotel had no food.) I was going to be with them all day til lunch. They had me order first. I ordered 2 eggs, potatoes, toast and coffee.

The interviewers ordered coffee and toast, then made several comments about how much food I ordered, did I know how much food it would be, calories, how they can't eat as much as I was eating, etc. I thought it was pretty rude of them. I ate half of it because they made such an awkward drama out of it.

They had flown me out the day before, so it's not like I was breaking the bank at IHOP.
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:58 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
2,916 posts, read 2,020,323 times
Reputation: 5880
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineAA View Post
I don't like them either.

I had one where they took me to breakfast before the interview (IHOP). I was in a different time zone, so it felt like lunchtime for me by then. (My hotel had no food.) I was going to be with them all day til lunch. They had me order first. I ordered 2 eggs, potatoes, toast and coffee.

The interviewers ordered coffee and toast, then made several comments about how much food I ordered, did I know how much food it would be, calories, how they can't eat as much as I was eating, etc. I thought it was pretty rude of them. I ate half of it because they made such an awkward drama out of it.

They had flown me out the day before, so it's not like I was breaking the bank at IHOP.
Did you end up working there? If not, they may have been doing you a huge favor by giving you a glimpse into what you'd be dealing with. And just think, if they acted that snarky during the interview, where everyone is supposed to be on their best behavior, just imagine how they'd be once their true colors really started to show. Yikes! And by the way, that doesn't sound like such a huge meal for someone who had been traveling and was tired and a little jet lagged.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:17 PM
 
Location: nYC
684 posts, read 501,782 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stan4 View Post
I just finished giving a candidate a tour of one of our facilities. He just came from an interview lunch with another some other of my partners and now one of our HR/recruiting people is taking him to different places.

And it made me think about way back when I was doing interviews.

I decided I don't really like eating during an interview.

When did that become a thing?

We fly people out, put them in hotels, take 'em up to corporate for meet and greets, interviews, then force them to eat with a bunch of strangers at some fancy pants restaurant (where everyone else eats, drinks, and gets merry, but they are forced to be serious and not imbibe). I would HATE that. I don't like eating with strangers to begin with, but to be under the microscope to begin with and then tossed into this weird social situation...

But almost every place in our niche industry does this.

What do y'all think?
I think I would like to interview with you. When I go to interview they do their best to annoy me with stupid questions, but you are offering free lunch, it would be even better if I did not have to talk. Can we do a telecom interview where you pay for my delivery ? I know a great sushi place !
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:53 PM
 
Location: U.S.A., Earth
4,496 posts, read 2,884,522 times
Reputation: 4013
Sounds like part of a behavior interview. Similar to see if executives can handle high stress situations by putting them in a sweat box, having them count backwards the prime numbers from 100, and then answer some corporate questions, or something to those ends [shrug]


Here, they want to see how you mesh with food. I still remember having mock lunch interviews in college...
-using the correct utensil
-cut with your right hand
-put the napkin on the chair(?) when you were done
-knife and fork parallel means you're done
-apart means you're still eating
-avoid finger foods, especially messy foods like ribs
-never finish your plate
-never ask for seconds


I have yet to have an actual lunch/dinner interview, but it sure as hell's gonna be a new awkward if I do!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Digby Sellers View Post
There's more of a defined rhythm and timing with a meal. I've had Starbucks interviews and think they are as bad as regular interviews. The odd formality of a normal interview in an informal setting. It's the worst of both worlds.
Yeah... the only time you should be interviewing in a Starbucks is if your job is going to BE in that Starbucks.
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:58 PM
 
35,108 posts, read 40,267,404 times
Reputation: 62061
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandsthetime View Post
I'm a vegetarian so it would probably be a bit more difficult for me. Try telling that to a hiring manager and watch their jaw drop. They just can't comprehend it and realize that not everyone is the same...lol


I seriously doubt it is such a jaw dropping event to most and honestly there is no real reason to even mention it. All you have to do is order some sort of salad and a drink and move on with the interview.
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Old 11-24-2015, 12:01 AM
 
35,108 posts, read 40,267,404 times
Reputation: 62061
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineAA View Post
I don't like them either.

I had one where they took me to breakfast before the interview (IHOP). I was in a different time zone, so it felt like lunchtime for me by then. (My hotel had no food.) I was going to be with them all day til lunch. They had me order first. I ordered 2 eggs, potatoes, toast and coffee.

The interviewers ordered coffee and toast, then made several comments about how much food I ordered, did I know how much food it would be, calories, how they can't eat as much as I was eating, etc. I thought it was pretty rude of them. I ate half of it because they made such an awkward drama out of it.

They had flown me out the day before, so it's not like I was breaking the bank at IHOP.

So you changed what you normally do to please someone else?
I have never and would never do that, I eat what I eat no matter what the event.
It was awkward because you allowed them to make you feel awkward.
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Old 11-24-2015, 12:06 AM
 
230 posts, read 188,460 times
Reputation: 183
I rarely eat during interviews. The primary reason being that I don't want to risk disagreeing with the food and having to deal with it for the rest of the day. Last thing you want to deal with during a presentation or one on one interview is an upset stomach or excessive gas. Also remember that interviews are as much you interviewing them as they are interviewing you. Particularly if you are coming from a long ways, you only have a few hours to decide if this organization has a role in your future. I spent my meal times eating something light (simple meals) and grilling my boss on big picture / long view questions.
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Old 11-24-2015, 07:10 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
3,911 posts, read 4,653,076 times
Reputation: 6247
I once had an interview lunch - I was currently working in NYC and the company was in NJ. I had not had the opportunity to meet one of the gentlemen I'd be working for, and when they knew they were coming into town for a meeting with a client, they called me the day before to find out if I was available to meet him and have lunch.

I fibbed to my boss and told him that my uncle and one of his co-workers was in town for business and wanted to take me to lunch - this way if my co-workers happened to see me (the open-air restaurant was just next door to my office building), they wouldn't think it was weird that I was out to lunch with two men in business suits. And it wasn't that far-fetched since my aunt and uncle DID both have jobs that regularly brought them to NYC on business.

I didn't feel awkward about the lunch, other than the fear that a current co-worker would come up and ask me to introduce him/her to my uncle. *lol* But the interview itself was very casual and kind of anti-climactic, since I already had a hunch they were going to offer me the job since most companies don't typically take a secretarial candidate out to lunch for a second interview.

A few days later I got the job offer, and turned in my two weeks' notice the following week. And I got a nice meal in a very nice restaurant that was way outside of MY budget.
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