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I had a really strange interview experience this week. 5 hr technical interview, was told in advance they would focus on communication and collaboration. There were four 1hr long pair programming sessions. During each of the interviews, the interviewer was doing something distracting or bizarre. One person was constantly changing headphones, while I was talking. One person didn't introduce themselves and had a very loud notification buzz from email inbox that persisted during the interview. Another person was just ignoring me during the interview, looking at their phone. Another person was constantly typing quite loudly throughout the interview, distracted by other things. Looking back it's fairly obvious that they were simulating a bad pair programming partner and they were testing my communication skills. I did my best to reel the person in and keep them engaged and work through the problem, but I did feel really peeved throughout the interview that they were so rude and unprofessional. I checked out quite early and decided to chug through the interview as a learning experience. Has anyone else experienced an interview like this?


I've never even heard about such a process before, but I think you made the right choice by moving on and thinking of it as a learning experience.

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Jivago Alves19:04:09

We do push back on some topics during the interview but only when it makes sense. This kind of simulation is unproductive in my opinion to say the least. If they were not simulating, then we can all agree it's a bad environment.

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scheduling a 5 hour interview doesn’t make any sense to me , both interviewers and interviewees would end up getting exhausted after 2 hours

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Dimitar Uzunov15:04:11

hmm sounds to me like someone from management forced the guys to do pair programming for the recruitment process and they don’t really want to do it

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@UDBM9Q0VC How big of a company was that?


Are they using Clojure?


Small company, and yes @U050KSS8M


Wow, ok. Now I’m really curious 🙂. I would have thought the combination small company + Clojure would be mostly immune from problems like that.

Drew Verlee15:04:48

A lot of factors can play into team synergy, i caution against assuming a preferred programming paradigm implies other traits as well.


What an awful experience. I'm sorry to hear you were subjected to that. At least there isn't any ambiguity, you know that you don't want to work with them.


I would have declined to even take part in 5 hours of interview. I did 5 interviews in one day in the past with a well known consulting company. I had 4 excellent interviews that also confirmed everything I had hoped the company valued. In the 5th interview I was horrified as to what the person was saying, they were acting against all the principles of the company. This was the person I would be working for. I was completely thrown and hardly had much of a discussion. My impression of that company plummeted and I walked away thinking I avoided a big mistake. I don't think I even consider they were doing it on purpose to see how I would react.

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