I had an interview today at an engineering consultancy company. I was applying for a programming job. I was wearing a button shirt tucked into my jeans. Neat, but not too formal. (This type of informal clothing is very common in my field and country. Dressing up in suit and tie would seem very odd.) I also had a grey jacket with me. It was a grey, casual sporty sweater-jacket with zippers. Not a thick wintercoat or a raincoat. Because it was very hot, I had it laying next to me on the sofa, while waiting in the lounge for the interviewer to come and get me.
When he arrived and invited me to follow him, I stood up, picked up my jacket, cup of water and notebook and walked towards him. At that point, he was also getting himself a cup of water from the dispenser that was available in the lounge.
Now here's the thing... while his cup was filling, he looked at me and said "Oh, Is that jacket from brand... uhm... what was it again...?" (It seemed like he wanted me to help him fill in the blank) I answered "Uhm, I don't know. I don't care much about brands". (It was my SO that suggested that I bought this jacket. I'm a guy... I don't know anything about fashion, clothes or shopping...). I said "Would it be brand X?", he answered "No, not brand X. Isn't it from brand Y? I think I have the exact same one.". Then I answered that it might be possible, I just don't know. I could have checked the label ofcourse, but I thought it wasn't worth the hassle, since we were in the middle of walking to the interview room and it also didn't seem important to me.
I know recruiters have a lot of special tricks up their sleeves to get to know things about their candidates. (Watching body language, the way the candidate talks about former employers/colleagues, handwriting tests, etc.) So I was wondering... Was this question something psychological? Was there a purpose? Did he expect me to answer in a particular way, to be able to judge my personality on? Or was he just making small talk?
Not sure if it's related, but during the interview, my car was mentioned when he was asking about something I did recently. He asked what car I drove, and I also saw him write my answer down. I wonder... related to the jacket-question or not, why did he ask this? Was it purely out of interest? Or does this tell something about the candidate, whether he drives in a Lada or in a Lamborghini?
EDIT: a lot of answers/comments focus on the word "trick" I used, and I feel like it's misinterpreted. I didn't intend it as something bad, like they would "trick me into something". I meant a "trick", as in a technique to get some information of a candidate.