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30 years of BLT – some more memories


Many of you will have seen that it’s BLT’s 30 year anniversary this year, so here’s Chapter 2 in the instalments of reminiscing! (For chapter 1, click here)

This time we thought it good to look back on some of the more memorable recruitment scenarios we’ve encountered over the last three decades – the printable ones at least….

Reasons given by clients for rejecting a candidate:

  • Brought ‘My Little Pony’ lunchbox to interview
  • Someone told me that they fiddled their expenses in their last job
  • Turned up drunk
  • Body odour
  • Mickey Mouse tie
  • Stormed out of interview after 15 minutes, so no, we won’t be progressing
  • Will need to chop off pony tail to work here (to a male candidate)
  • Candidate ate one of the toffees available in reception whilst waiting for the interview – couldn’t speak when it came to introducing themselves to the interviewer
  • Gold teeth
  • Didn’t take off duffel coat throughout interview, despite very hot weather
  • The person had a thing with one our colleagues, and they’ve told us they would leave if we appointed them.

Reasons given by candidates for turning down an offer

  • Dog in office. I hate dogs.
  • Can’t work there as the interviewer wore too much perfume and I’m allergic
  • Contract was addressed to the wrong person – if the company can’t even get that right, don’t want to work there.
  • They’ve offered me 50% less than what I’m earning currently
  • Need to be at home for three hours during the working day to exercise my animals
  • Despite what I told you before, I was only looking at the market to see if I can get a better deal where I am.
  • I’m going to jail.
  • I know I said I would relocate, but I didn’t tell my other half until last night that I was leaving them, and we’ve agreed to give it another go.
  • Interviewer wouldn’t shake my hand because I was a woman
  • Offer is dependent on psychometric tests, and I don’t believe in them
  • I had an affair with the interviewer 20 years ago – was an awkward meeting.

Other recruitment incidents

  • BLT recruiter interviewing a candidate one evening – offices were locked up at close of play and the two were stuck there for together for hours. With no access to toilet….
  • One former BLT Director who shall remain nameless falling asleep in an interview and pretending they’d fainted.
  • Client interviewing candidates for a big commercial role at our offices – bottom of jug broke when pouring out water. Drenched client and candidate.
  • One current BLT Director heading to a conference, looking at map to find venue in pouring rain. Taxi drove by resulting in being splashed with mud from head to toe. Attendance at conference not feasible.
  • Post one memorable BLT client party, a client was locked in the bathroom for hours – unsuccessful attempts made to escape through tiny window.
  • Seminar for HMRC candidates arranged, attracting a diverse pool of talent for potential private sector roles. BLT omitted to provide any non-alcoholic drinks/vegetarian options….last minute dash out to source such half way through seminar. Still makes us cringe this one two decades later….
  • Overseas client turned up en masse at BLT offices in London for a full day of interviews. We had told all the candidates to go to the company’s UK Head Office in the Thames Valley.
  • One current BLT Director collected a candidate from reception to interview and was chatting away quite happily for 20 minutes, before finally realising that they were interviewing the wrong candidate.

There are plenty more that aren’t appropriate to share publicly. Maybe when we get to celebrating 100 years, we’ll write a book…..

- by Guy Barrand

Posted by: Beament Leslie Thomas