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Old 11-23-2015, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Texas
43,607 posts, read 52,818,062 times
Reputation: 70944

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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?
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Old 11-23-2015, 12:56 PM
 
16,720 posts, read 14,756,789 times
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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.
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Old 11-23-2015, 01:07 PM
 
2,150 posts, read 2,691,862 times
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My second interview for my current job was over a dinner. I thought I would hate it, but it actually helped me learn more about the people I would be working with. There was far more small talk and it was much more relaxed than sitting in a conference room and staring at each other. It helped me learn more about the people I would be working with and ultimately sold me on the job and the company.

However, it was 95% a conversation and not my soon to be boss firing questions at me. If it were the latter, that would be rather unnerving.
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Old 11-23-2015, 01:09 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
149 posts, read 99,696 times
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I'm not in the industry where anything is fancy which I guess is lucky. I have serious food allergies so my options would be to refuse to eat anything and come across as a someone who won't mesh with other employees, make multiple inquiries with the chef and ask for dish alterations and special handling of my food which would make me look either overly demanding or conversely needy, or my last option would be to cross my fingers and hope they have a stretcher nearby.

Even without the added pressures of dietary concerns I would prefer to just sit someplace quiet where I can talk to and hear those I am meeting with.
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Old 11-23-2015, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Texas
43,607 posts, read 52,818,062 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Digby Sellers View Post
My second interview for my current job was over a dinner. I thought I would hate it, but it actually helped me learn more about the people I would be working with. There was far more small talk and it was much more relaxed than sitting in a conference room and staring at each other. It helped me learn more about the people I would be working with and ultimately sold me on the job and the company.

However, it was 95% a conversation and not my soon to be boss firing questions at me. If it were the latter, that would be rather unnerving.
I think the same thing, but how about over drinks or coffee?
Why do I have to worry about dribbling sauce down my suit?
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Old 11-23-2015, 01:14 PM
 
2,150 posts, read 2,691,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stan4 View Post
I think the same thing, but how about over drinks or coffee?
Why do I have to worry about dribbling sauce down my suit?
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.
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Old 11-23-2015, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
5,105 posts, read 5,421,985 times
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Here, interviews typically stretch over several hours and most times through the lunch hour(s) depending upon schedules. We feel it's only considerate to provide candidates with a meal while they are here.

And trust me, I hear groans from most when they're scheduled for the lunch interview. It's awkward for them as well the candidate.
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Old 11-23-2015, 02:35 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
12,211 posts, read 10,429,713 times
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One of the best interviews I've done was a lunch with the hiring manager and a fellow employee, followed by the real interview. It was nice because at lunch it was very laid back we just had small talk. They even said things like, are you getting nervous to meet the big scary interviewers?? oh wait, that's us! I got the job and they later said it's just a way to lighten the mood and warm you up so they can see the real you at the actual interview.
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Old 11-23-2015, 03:02 PM
 
Location: Planet Telex
4,681 posts, read 2,309,678 times
Reputation: 4401
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
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Old 11-23-2015, 05:15 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis, MN
6,094 posts, read 3,417,290 times
Reputation: 7765
Eh, I wouldn't mind. Free food. You DO have to worry about proper etiquette (depending on the poshness of the place) as well as the right answers, though, so it's a LITTLE more stressful.
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