Interview and Job Experiences

Let’s hear your best or worst job/interview experiences?

I’ll start. Crazy experiences: I’ve dealt with companies who wanted Spec work to companies wanting me to sign my life away for up to 10 years. Which meant signing a non-compete agreeing if I ever left the company( I never took the job ) I could not work for another agency or design/develop websites up to 10 years time.

Best Experiences: I’ve found a couple of jobs that has been absolutely gems. Though only contract I really wished I could have stayed on longer to work for those jobs. Really great experiences.

Ohh, I’ll go next.

Worse Experience (but at least I got free food out of it)
I had a recruiter who basically was sending me to these “pyramid” type interview schemes. Where you work for X, and if you want to increase your pay, you have to get X more people to signup under you. So the first one, as soon as I got there, I knew what it was. BUT they were providing lunch, so I stuck around, ate, and then left. The second interview (different company), I did the same thing. Finally the third one, it clicked with the recruiter. He called me up and asked why I wasn’t staying around to fill out the forms and the in person interview (just like with the previous two interviews), to which I responded (with the same line as before) “Oh, was I supposed to stay? I was a bit full and tired, so I went home to nap”.

Needless to say, he didn’t call me anymore.

Best Experience
The job I’m in now. The recruiter I used had several companies for me to interview with, all of which were great! He unfortunately was the next recruiter after my worst experience. With both companies, I was his first candidate to get past the phone interview and the technical interview. He setup the in person interviews on the same day, since I’d have to travel 2 hours to get to the new city I planned to move to, and we met at his office beforehand. He’s talking about the first company and the interview is at 9:00 and he asked me if I had any questions. I responded back “Are they providing lunch?” To say he was taken back was an understatement and he started to look a bit panicked as he explained it will likely be over by 10:00, so he didn’t think so. I in turn interrupted him mid-sentence to explain it was an inside joke and then gave him the story of my worst experience, to which he chuckled.

I was eventually offered both positions and got to choose the one that I felt best suited me, and I have yet to regret that decision.


Yikes. I only had one other recruiter get mad at me. It was for a job that would have required a much longer relocation. I interviewed with the company all up until they wanted me to fly out to their headquarters when it hit me that their company was identical to the one I was currently at (and trying to get away from). So I declined to pursue it further. She was mad! I’m still not 100% sure why, but I’m thankful I stopped it and didn’t actually pursue it further.

Don’t recruiters get a commission? You lost her some money after she invested some time and effort. You cad!

My worst job was working a factory “swing shift” 7 days 1st, 1 day off, 7 day 2nd, 2 days off, 7 days 3rd, 4 days off, rinse repeat. The work wasn’t all that bad, but I never knew when to sleep or when to eat.

My “best” would depend.
I worked on tobacco farms when I was younger, Could smoke and drink on the job, could show up for work or not, and still have a job.
- fast forward many years -
My career in a hospital clinical lab. Respected for my skill and knowledge (regardless of my hair length) and the work made me feel good about contributing in part to the better health of others,


I do believe that they get a commission or a bonus or something. I think that’s why they work so hard to get you into an interview. Some can be really pushy at least I’ve experienced.

The worst interview I’ve had was purely due to the fact that the interviewer decided that a pretty resume is more important than finding out the candidates skills. It’s extremely frustrating. Had 2 interviews like this. One of them said I wasn’t qualified due to me not knowing 1 jQuery question. They asked me 3 HTML questins, 1 CSS question (how to do p span{} basically) and 3 jQuery questions. How in the world can you gauge someones skill like that?!

The best interview was actually one I just applied for (and got! The job offer was waiting for me 8 hours after the interview.) The senior front end developer was the one interviewing me. First questin was if I knew Chris Coyier. I did, and he was estatic. I was the first to know him :slight_smile: . “Love at first answer” so to speak. Very laid back; the guy was wearing a polo and shorts, and very friendly. Ended up talking for about 40 minutes just chit chatting. We have very similar views on CSS, Sass, and coding principles in general. It was fun talking to him. Wasn’t really an interview, but it was because talking to me abut all this, he managed to assess that I was qualified, and knew what I was talking about. He read some questions off a paper, but would then clarify and be like “I’m not sure why they would ask this sort of thing. You don’t have to answer if you don’t want. Kind of a stupid question.”

So yeah; this interview wasn’t a corporate type interview, where I was sweating. It was a casual conversation with a few questions mixed in. Kept the flow going. The guy had never interviewed anyone before, but I’m sure as hell glad he interviewed me. My personal character came out and my skills were shown via the talking. Absolutely perfect.

He did help me by talking to the company and recommending they bump up the pay to my counter offer, so even more plus :slight_smile: .

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That is great @RyanReese! I love when interviews are laid back like that.

Thanks! Having it be laid back was amazing. I’ve never had an interview like that, but I left the place feeling on top of the world. I open up after talking for a bit, so my confidence boosted as well, and I talked fluently. It was just perfect all around. Even gave me the co-hones (or however you spell it) to ask some semi-ballsy questions back to the guy that I never normally do because I’m awkward.

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I had an interview one time that it turned into me starting with the company the same day. I went in and they said we’ll get to the interview in a few. The PM put me to work and they were so impressed with my work they had me come back the next day for the next 6 months… the rest was history. I never did get the interview. lol. Too bad the company disbanded and closed up shop. Was a great job, small team, great people, work life was laid back and fun.

Those are the best, aren’t they? That is how my current job’s interview was (once you got past the phone call with the manager/supervisor – basic HR type questions, then the technical phone call interview). It was 4 of us in a room talking (team members I would be working closely with).

Very laid back, they’d ask you questions such as, “what does the following produce? var value = "34" + 345;” to try and gauge what you knew. Had to do a small programming test, write a function that takes in X and Y and returns Z. Fun stuff. Very laid back, very casual, and the atmosphere told you everything.

My interview with the second company (that I almost accepted) was the same way. The only downside is they were a 150 million company wanting to grow to 500 million and were looking for a new CEO as they were shipping/launching a new product. It just provided too much uncertainty for me to feel comfortable with them.

Yes, they do. But, apart from the one prior idiot of a recruiter, all the other ones I dealt with spent time finding the job that I felt was for me and weren’t just trying to fill slots. To each their own, I guess (as from what I’ve heard, that is rare for recruiters – so I must have gotten lucky).

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CRAZIEST ONE aka EASIEST ONE: I actually got interviewed by HR representative who have no idea what my resume said. We just talked about weather and passion of my career. Yes, I got the job.

HARDEST ONE: I don’t remember being hard on any interview… The longest one was 4 hours… ended up w/ headache afterwards.

I really appreciate this conversation! I’m looking for my first web design position, and it gives me a heads up on some of the questions I might be asked. I ran into something yesterday- this wasn’t an interview, so I apologize if it doesn’t exactly fit this discussion- but I was looking at a web firm, and I wanted to find out where they were located. I was rather excited about the company- I’d studied their website and their projects, as well as the requirements for some of their job openings. For some reason, probably not a very wise idea, I decided to walk in and talk to someone at the company. I said that I was interested in their “web design studio”. The woman stated “We’re not a studio. We build websites.” That completely caught me off guard, along with anything I had planned to say. I rather felt like a fool. I noticed that their web site refers to them as an agency. They design, develop, market, along with many other functions. I’ve been trying to find out the difference between a “studio” and an “agency”. I found an article where other people discuss the two types, and many don’t seem to think that there is much of a difference. Here’s the article, if anyone cares to see it:
I’m sure I made two mistakes: Being excited about a design firm before I get into an interview, and just walking in and talking to them, although I really didn’t consider that a bad move. If anyone has any advice for me, I certainly would appreciate it.

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