AUTHOR: Nell Campbell

So we’ve all been there - nervously awaiting an interview, curious as to what we may be asked.

But the social networking giants Facebook, take their recruitment process one step further.

They make their candidates think so far outside the box, that they can’t even see it. 

And can you blame them? Facebook’s annual revenue topped $10 billion for the first time last year and their quest to make the world more connected has seen them acquire the likes of Instagram, friendster and WhatsApp.

But how does Zuckerburg seek out the next generation of creative minds? He challenges them.

Here are some of the most mind boggling questions employees have been asked during their first interview at Facebook...


  1. "How many Big Macs does McDonald’s sell each year in the US?" - Data Scientist candidate
  2. "How many vacuums are there in the USA?" - Risk Analyst candidate
  3. “How would you design a simpler TV remote control?” - Product Designer candidate
  4. "How much money is spent on the internet?" - Account Manager candidate
  5. "Tell me your plan of action if you saw that photo uploads suddenly dropped by 50%" - User Intelligence candidate


And it's not just FacebookTwitter, Microsoft, Apple and Cisco are also fans of making their candidates think outside of the box.

Now these questions may seem extreme, but they're perfect examples of why you should prepare yourself for anything.

Interview questions are often abstract and designed to see how you approach the problem, rather than measuring how quickly you can provide the correct answer.

Zuckerburg famously once said that "he would only hire someone that he could see himself working for" and that’s why confidence is key.


A photo posted by Learning People (@learningpeople) on


A photo posted by Learning People (@learningpeople) on



If you can’t demonstrate to an employer that you can handle yourself in the interview, then they’ll worry how you’ll fare in front of their customers and clients.

Whatever role you’re applying for, we’ve compiled a list of six tips to fill you with confidence and help you get the job.


1. you can do it

Don’t doubt yourself. As soon as you start thinking you’re not worthy, you’ll start to show it. Listen to your favourite tunes before you go into the interview, it will help you relax. Also check your body language - Amy Cuddy held a great TED Talk on power posing to boost confidence. 


2. know your story

…and tell it well. Interesting personal stories are a great way to show your communication skills without having to spell them out. They’ll also make you more personable and being humble is always important.


3. cut the crap

Don’t talk too much about the past. Learn how to convey your strengths without getting wrapped up in previous roles - the chances are they’ve already read about it on your CV and it will make it seem like you’re not ready for change.


4. be a user

Get hands on experience of the product, don’t just read about it – buy it, use it, try it and most importantly, scrutinise it. Every company wants a fresh perspective on how they can improve their product.


5. have a plan

After immersing yourself in the product, you’ll need to think of ways you’d improve it. Now I’m not telling you to slate it in the first interview, but try and show what you’d bring to the table and what things you would implement instantly if you got the job.


6. know your stuff

Get a certification under your belt to show that you’re dedicated to your career - it’s the best way to show you know what you’re talking about and that you’re committed to learning new things.


Let us know what you think

We love to hear from you, what's the craziest thing you've been asked in an interview? If you have any tips or would like to let us know what you think, tweet us @tlp_tweets 

And if you're student with us and would like some help revamping your CV and preparing for an interview, get in touch with our CV detox team today.

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