Photo: World Prout Assembly
Some of the best firms seem to enjoy asking difficult, tedious, and arbitrary questions in their interviews with applicants. Google, for example, asks “How many golf balls fill a school bus?”
Goldman Sachs asks, “If you were shrunk to the size of a pencil, and put inside a blender, how would you get out?”
The purpose of the questions is to determine how well you solve problems analytically, an important test for someone who’s going to be working with numbers.
But another objective of an interview is to see how well the applicant will fit with the firm (and at a financial firm, its clients), and to do that, the interviewer has to get a gauge of their personality.
These two questions, which were asked of an applicant who was applying to a couple of hedge funds, do exactly that.
What’s the best e-mail address you’ve ever seen, and why?
Tell me a clean joke.
To answer them well, you have to loosen up a bit, show some personality, and think on your feet.
Think you’ve got a good answer? Put it in the comments section.