Alien Abductions: The Real Deal?

"...there are hundreds of workaday individuals who claim to have been abducted by aliens. These individuals do not flower into gurus; they struggle alone with memories of unintelligible messages, temporary paralysis and humanoid creatures hovering over their beds. Their stories don't always check out, but their minds do: Psychological tests confirm that abductees are rarely psychotic or mentally ill. Some 3 million Americans believe they've encountered bright lights and incurred strange bodily marks indicative of a possible encounter with aliens, according to a recent poll.

How does a space alien abduction compare with a stressful job interview?  Apart from being probed on an alien space ship, as many have claimed to have experienced--the stress effects have similarities and those are unpleasant and memorable.


I have to ask…have any of you in the recruiting industry represented here on the RBC ever:


  • Conducted a stressful job interview on a job applicant?
  • Experienced a stressful job interview as a job applicant?
  • Hear of a stressful job interview and its outcome?


As for me, I’ve been around long enough to have experienced all the above.  So I can attest that it is traumatizing and so unnecessary when you think of the downsides, e.g., a customer lost for life; psychological scarring to the interviewee; creates a bad ambassador who will happily describe the experience over and over; complaints to EEOC and/or legal action taken; and bad press that travels at lightening speed these days.


As a Corporate Manager of Employment I often heard of such complaints and addressed them in kind.  I recall an interesting push back from one hiring manager who simply said:  “It works.”  He explained that if he yelled at a job applicant and got in their face—he was merely exposing them to the hostile work environment they would be introduced to if hired.  “If they can’t take it in a job interview they won’t last here”.  I recommended other ways of getting at a candidate's ability and experience for working in a similar environment.  When I asked him if he was interviewed in the same way, his response was:  "Well, no."  He complied with my request.


Another example was a Ph.D candidate’s interview experience for a research assignment in a leading biotech company. After his round of interviews he compared it to what the Spanish Inquisition  must have felt like.  He was eventually selected, but he wasn’t enamored with the process.


Your thoughts?

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