22 Comments

  1. I honestly didn’t realize that was a mirror until reading the third comment. I thought it was someone interviewing an identical clone.

  2. If ever anyone asks you where you see yourself in six months time, reply “On the other side of the Sun!*”

    (*Along with everyone else, of course. But still).

  3. >If ever anyone asks you where you see yourself in six months time, reply “On the other side of the Sun!*”

    Unfortunately, no-one has *ever* asked me where I see myself in six months.

  4. Hear, hear, Keera! I would add that to me the question implies a kind of hubris and fundamental misunderstanding about life, as encapsulated by the aphorism “man plans, God laughs” (but without necessarily necessitating a belief in a higher power — the uncaring random universe might not laugh, but it is equally indifferent to your futile plannings…) And even if you don’t want to go quite so nihilistic, insisting on predicting the future takes the fun away, making these questioners on par with stupid people who insist on telling you crucial plot points before you see a movie, so you have the added annoyance that they might not even be right about their spoilers!

  5. Olivier has it. But the comic is also punning on “see”. He not only visualizes himself as boss in ten years, he’s also visualizing *seeing* himself in the boss’s chair in ten years.

  6. larK: The point of the question isn’t to get an accurate picture of where the interviewee will actually be 10 years from now. It’s to find out what they want to be doing, which doesn’t require the interviewer to have any hubris about predicting the future.

    That said, despite the fact that this is supposedly a standard interview question, I’ve never actually encountered it in real life. Nor have I ever actually been asked “what is your greatest weakness?”

  7. “That said, despite the fact that this is supposedly a standard interview question, I’ve never actually encountered it in real life. Nor have I ever actually been asked “what is your greatest weakness?””

    Were you ever asked “If you could be any kind of tree, what would you be?” Or “boxers or briefs”?

    (I actually asked the “tree” question once myself, but it was at the end of a good interview and we had all reached the “kidding around now” stage. And yes, we hired her.”

  8. larK “they might not even be right about their spoilers!” – this happened to a friend, CD; she was going to see Letter to Brezhnev and JJ said, “Good film, but it’s sad at the end when she dies”. So CD spent the whole film expecting that – but at the end the doesn’t die.

  9. “What is you greatest weakness?”
    “I’m always the first one there in the morning and the last one to leave at night.”
    “So your weakness is that you work too hard.”
    “No, I think stealing office supplies is closer to my greatest weakness.”

  10. “It’s to find out what they want to be doing, which doesn’t require the interviewer to have any hubris about predicting the future.”
    *I* don’t know — nor do I particularly want to know — what I will be doing, nor do I care to ponder on it; if *I* don’t care to know, it is even less the business of someone else…
    I reject the premise of the question: it is not going to elicit any useful information, and it runs the risk of triggering tunnel vision bias, where you stop perceiving things unless they comply to your preconceived bias — if I strongly have a stake in where I want to be in the future, I may miss out on a lot of things in the here and now and be less happy in my life as a result.
    As Mitch4 famously said, Life is what happens while you’re making other plans.
    (And honestly, the whole exercise of interviewing someone to determine whether they should work at your company or not is an exercise in hubris — I strongly maintain that after clearing some very basic prerequisites, we’d all be much better off with a lottery and a six month probation period; even Google has backpedaled on their interview process and its efficacy: https://www.wired.com/2015/04/hire-like-google/ )

  11. Is this pre-lockdown?

    With people working from home this situation takes on a new meaning.

  12. “What is you greatest weakness?”
    “I tend to fly into an uncontrollable murderous outrage when I’m asked two stupid questions in a row. Next?”

  13. larK: It may or may not be a stupid interview question, but that has nothing to do with my comment, or your original comment. The interviewer asking the question is not trying to predict the future.

  14. @WW:
    Your comment was about my comment. My comment was agreeing with Keera that I hate the interview question in the comic, and giving my reasons for why I don’t like the question. So, to summarize up to this point: I think it’s a stupid interview question. Your comment on my comment basically is you trying to invalidate my reasons for my opinion (ie: that it’s a stupid interview question). I respond by elaborating on my reasons for my opinion that I find it a stupid interview question. You now reply to that comment with a rather bizarre claim that whether or not it is a stupid interview question has nothing to do with my original comment, by extension that somehow your comment on my comment had nothing to do with that.
    WTF, dude?
    First, you can’t just rewrite the facts to suit you: my two comments are all about it being a stupid interview question — that’s their whole raison d’être! The question is trying to bring prediction about the future into the discussion (because any discussion about anything in the future is by necessity going to involve predicting that future!), and I don’t want to be predicting the future — I reject the premise of the question! — because I think it’s a stupid thing to do, and hence, the question is a stupid interview question!
    Second, you may not agree with me, but you cannot deny me my right to my opinions! I hate that interview question! I think it is a stupid interview question! I have been asked that question in an actual interview, and I think it’s a stupid interview question! These are my experiences and you cannot deny them! I agree with Keera (“Always hated that question.”) and think her original comment should be amplified (“Hear, hear, Keera!”), and here are some of my takes on why the question irritates me. You might not agree with my reasons, but you cannot deny that these are my reasons for the question irritating me, and for my finding the question to be a stupid interview question!

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