Interview hell

14th November 2003 at 00:00
To cheer up those of you about to embark on applying for jobs, we asked TES internet forum visitors "What's the worst feedback you've ever been given at an interview?" They make grim reading, but hopefully they'll make you feel better about yours:

"One head told me that I was at the bottom of the list."

"Months after an interview for a job I actually got, my head of department said I had a 'Clint Eastwood sneer of distaste' on my face throughout the interview, as if it pained me to condescend to take part at all."

"My feedback from my uni lecturer on teaching practice was: 'To be quite frank, you are not an excellent student, just a very good one. You will probably find that you will make a better teacher than someone who has been classed as an excellent student'."

"One head didn't give me a job because they didn't like my shoes. They even phoned me up after the fact to let me know."

"The worst interview experience was in the early 80s, when I was applying for my first teaching post. At the end of my interview, as I was about to go out of the door, the head asked me to take out a tray of dirty cups and put it on a table outside the room. It took a long time for the sting of that humiliation to wear off."

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today