Cringiest thing you’ve ever done in an interview

since we are on quarantine, why not get a couple of laughs/cringes in. wondering your guys’ cringiest things you’ve ever done or said in an interview.

for me, it was more of a coffee chat at a top bank. I was really tryna vibe with the person I was talking to and tried to come off as bro-y as he was kind of bro-y. anyway, I’ve said “oh shit” at least 5 times. but the worst was when we concluded the call. I said “this was a dope ass talk - I’ll catch ya soon!”

needless to say, I never got a first round.

 

Alumni Managing Director organized a coffee chat with me and a few other prospective summer analysts. I asked "What pieces of advice would you give to your sophomore year college self".

MD said "Hmmm let me think"

I was trying to be funny and said "Drink and party less" which is a frequent answer from younger IBers

he gave me a strange look and said he didn't drink in college

At the end of the day got an offer as worked ass off, but funny in hindsight.

 

I go to a non-target "party school" and I get the opposite response when I asked that question.

They would just tell me I go to a fun school and just have more fun and party more while it lasts.

Array
 

Had informal chats with some members at the office I was recruiting for. After I left I realized I left my plastic bottle of water on the table.

Came back a few weeks later for the superday. No idea why but halfway through I randomly brought up “hey btw I’m sorry I left the water bottle on the table last time” and the associate just looked at me with a blank stare, and eventually continued

 

One of my first interviews - when it got towards the end and he asked me “do you have any questions for me”. I had no idea wtf the job even was and I’d only worked at retail/gas stations before, so I was like “how much do I get paid” and “how many hours do I have to work”

The guy started laughing and hung up

 
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I'm sure you asked pretty unprofessionally, but I do think it's absolutely ridiculous that it's considered unprofessional to ask about pay. Like bruh, I'm here for a job, not to volunteer.

 

One time at an insight day I misprounounced "liquidity" as "litquidity" and someone started laughing but the director didn't get it. Nobody was explaining it to him so I started explaining it but he didn't quite understand what a meme page was. He had a massive boomer moment but he didn't seem bothered, but it was very awkward for me to explain it whilst trying my best to not sound condescending.

 

Spend either more or less time on the Gram, young buck, or you´ll never make it. Pretty funny tho, would def chuckle.

 
<span class=keyword_link><a href=/resources/careers/jobs/ibd-investment-banking-division><abbr title=investment banking division>ibd</abbr> pilgrim</a></span>:
One time at an insight day I misprounounced "liquidty" as "litquidy" and someone started laughing but the director didn't get it. Nobody was explaining it to him so I started explaining it but he didn't quite understand what a meme page was. He had a massive boomer moment but he didn't seem bothered, but it was very awkward for me to explain it whilst trying my best to not sound condescending.

I am not a boomer and had to google it to understand.. Still don't quite get it. Fuck me, maybe I should download tik tok or something. I am mid thirties so old millenial

 

Lol this happened to me, and the associate on the other end started chuckling over the phone. I wanted to shoot myself.

 

Interviewing with a fund for an internship position. Interview went well and on my way out, I say "Well, this was fun" and leave. Ended up being invited for the second round but those are definitely not the last words you want to say after your interview.

 

It's most common to say this sarcastically / offhandedly after a very unpleasant experience.

Definitely see how that could be uncomfortable the minute it left his mouth.

“Doesn't really mean shit plebby boi. LMK when you're pulling thiccboi cheques.“ — @m_1
 

I was interviewing for my current role via phone around the end of October and after the formal questions we were just chatting about random things for a bit. The associate interviewing me brought something up regarding the next stage in the process or something similar, I can't recall exactly, but I said something along the lines of "makes sense, it is spooky season after all."

The associate gave a light chuckle and then the call ended. Still got the job though.

 
Funniest

PE Firm: "We invest in B+ companies. They have a lot of potential, but have some flaw that helps us buy at a discount (recent managment changes, disruption, etc.). We then work to transform them into A companies over our holding periods, and re-trade at a premium."

Me: "Sounds like my dating strategy."

PE Firm: Awkward Silence "You can go now"

 

First time flying to New York to speak with an alumni. The conversation went smooth so at the end we began to shoot the shit and he talks about his time in the frat .

He reminded me of Thad in Blue Mountain State but he was also chill and down to earth, so I thought in order to not come across as a finance robot I should ask him a light hearted question. Well I froze, began to sweat because I was an introverted nerdy kid who never kissed a girl and took 30 seconds to nervously ask " yo uh do you have a strat to crush some puss?" He laughed, asked me if I'm serious and then proceeded to give me advice.

10/10 would not recommend asking an alumni how to crush some puss when you are trying to come across as polished and professional.

 

I love this answer because it reminds me of how fucking cringe some of the stuff I used to say during interviews with analysts was. Before I realized how important it was to actually be yourself I tried so hard to come off a as a sports guy, as I thought that was crucial (based on literally nothing other than the fact that one of the first banks I interviewed with told me the guys loved drinking and watching some SEC school as a firm). Even used to call one of my friends who actually knew like everything about every team in our home city for key updates before final rounds so I could seem "informed". Ugh let me tell you that I did not come across as a sports guy and I did not receive offers using this strat. Even though I am somewhat nerdy once I just acted like myself offers started coming. Hope my anecdotal experience can be used as a lesson for others, don't pretend to be someone you aren't.

 

I am confident that the majority of times someone can easily tell if you actually watch sports or get girls instead of trusting that you say you do. I don't think there's a scientific explanation but rather a natural feeling that makes someone either think eh this guy is full of shit, he only looks at sportscenter or damn this guy has enough information to provide detailed analysis and insights into the game last night.

I think not trying to conform actually drastically improves the quality of the networking session because the alumni or interviewer will prefer to have a conversation with a genuinely normal and hardworking person who knows himself and is confident in what he can add to the firm instead of some guy who rehearsed every line and comes across as a bland or worst yet basic.

 

Was heading to a coffee chat with a JPM MD at his NYC office. It was pouring outside so I left with the first umbrella I could find in my apartment. As soon as I walked outside, I realized it was a Guggenheim umbrella that they gave away at their infosession. Felt weird walking into JPM with it, so I concealed the logo as well as I could. Coffee chat went well, but being the dumb fuck I am, I left the umbrella in his office, right by his desk. Needless to say, I did not receive a first round from JPM.

 

Don't have a personal one, but I think about this old Dilbert comic a lot:

Dilbert Common Sense from Aug 27, 2003

“Doesn't really mean shit plebby boi. LMK when you're pulling thiccboi cheques.“ — @m_1
 

I worked Back Office Ops at BB remote office in the south (USA.) I was applying to any job I could find both external and internal, as my group was experiencing layoffs every 6 months and my team was an easy target. I did about 5 hours of real work a week…

Anyway, in the most ridiculous 2-hours span:

  • I declined an external job offer (it was a career pivot and no pay bump)
  • 15 Mins later I was laid off (offered to stay 6 weeks to train some Puna India replacement)
  • Walked out and immediately called and accepted the previous external job I declined. (said I had a change of Heart!!) LOL
  • An hour later I walk into an internal job interview with a MD on middle office team. It was set week ago, and I had already interviewed with the associates, just shit timing.

MD’s first question: “Why are you interested in leaving your current position and team”

Me: “Well I just got laid off this morning”

MD: “………. (Face like he’d seen a ghost)…… Okay”

I think his head was spinning about if he would be getting laid off too.

“Capitalism: God’s way of determining who is smart and who is poor.” Ron Swanson
 

This one I felt that shit is the worse, so weird to handle afterwards too like what the fuck do I ask for a redo?? Demetri Martin has a joke about it, except the person on the giving end of the handshake meant to go for a knuckle numb and he replies “paper covers rock bitch.”

Gun rights activist
 

Two things.

An interview for my first internship in college. I was being interviewed by the managing partner of the firm. He asked how I was doing. I responded, "Crushing it." There was a pause and he ignored it. I somehow got the job.

At a networking event I was having a pretty good convo with an associate at the bank and I say something like, "I had a question about a certain aspect of the coverage group that I haven't been able to ask someone yet." He says, "Okay, shoot." I blank and stand there like an idiot because I forgot my question and coudn't think of another one.