11

This question already has an answer here:

I attended interviews for the position of Android Developer in two different companies. I knew my answer was right, but the interviewer was incorrect leading to him thinking that I have answered incorrectly. I also cross-checked my answers after the interview to be sure.

I have gone through this question (How to tell a interviewer that he is wrong on a technical question). This answer is helpful when there is a discussion during the interview, but in my case, they just ignored my answer and commented, "clear your concepts", "you need to brush up your basics", etc. and moved on to the next question. I did not get an opportunity to explain my answers.

I did not know how to handle this situation. I thought it might sound rude or over-confident to argue. I don't want to be proved wrong even when I am correct. What should I do if I face such situations?

marked as duplicate by Telastyn, Roger, ChrisF, DJClayworth, Michael Grubey Mar 30 '15 at 18:14

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • 8
    I've had this experience and it was demoralising. I was asked a standard technical question about a programming language and gave a standard answer. I was somewhat surprised to be told "No, that's wrong, it's X" where X was a keyword in the language. Through inexperience I went off on a detailed breakdown on why X was NOT the answer which of course ended any chance I had of getting the job. People saying "Well why would you want to work there anyway?" are right in the long-term but a man's gotta eat. – TheMathemagician Mar 27 '15 at 10:59
  • To be clear, were the 2 instances of this happening related to similar questions, or were they different questions? – Nigel Harper Mar 27 '15 at 11:02
  • 1
    @Telastyn: you cant predict if there's 'always' a discussion.. Its not necessary he will always ask why.. – sanedroid Mar 28 '15 at 5:24
  • @NigelHarper: next question was different.. wasnt related.. – sanedroid Mar 28 '15 at 5:24
8

When contradicted on a question where you are right and the interviewer is wrong, take note of the hiccup and move on - You still have the rest of the interview to get through. Assume that even in the best case scenario. you'll barely have enough time to finish the interview and go through all the questions the interviewer wants to ask you. Try to come across as credibly competent for the rest of the interview. When the interviewer asks you if you have any questions, ask for the interviewer's contact data and if possible, someone else that you can cc.

Take care of the discrepancy/loose end once you get home. Even as you are communicating the right info, keep the tone positive i.e. cheerful, cooperative, helpful, calm and confident. You want to come across as someone who is a pleasure to work with, regardless of any disagreement. They may or may not buy what you are saying, but that's their choice.

Regardless of what happens, how the interviewer acts or what the interviewer says during the interview, work with the interviewer so that the interview is a successful experience for both of you. The interviewer may act in a judgmental way that closes the communication channels but since you went through all that trouble to get an interview, keep the lines of communication open. Decide for yourself whether you want to pursue the opportunity at all once you make it home.

  • This seems to be a helpful suggestion. I will try to follow and implement this in future if ever I come across such cases again(I hope not). Also I always have this habit of asking the interviewer politely about the question's correct answers where I had been wrong. But since this case was different I was afraid if that could sound rude or overconfident etc to him.. – sanedroid Mar 28 '15 at 5:49
13

First, there are some interviewers who intentionally contradict you to see how you handle it. If this is the case, you might simply state, "I've always done it this way. I'll have to try it your way and see." This response would also work fine for a situation where you are both correct, but the interviewer prefers his/her way.

If the interviewer is just plain wrong, you should probably just move on and consider yourself lucky. You probably don't want to work for a place where the interviewers are unprepared, and are probably winging it. Such places often turn out to be chaotic places to work.

If you just have to be right and get the last word, try it out at home, then email the result to the interviewer and show them the problem with their solution. Dont expext them to come back with a job offer, though.

  • well the company is a well-developed company having multiple branches. They had informed me that they are new to android and hiring to start with android. Also people who took my technical were looking around of my age.. I was really looking forward to work in this company. So I just want to deal with this if ever again i come across such cases in future and still make a positive impression. Thanks for your answer. But I am sure he didnt intentionally disagreed(or else he might have asked reason) but he just moved on with next question commenting clear your concepts. – sanedroid Mar 27 '15 at 7:46
  • 5
    +1 to the second paragraph, although interviewers who don't have the same expertise as the interviewee are not the problem... the problem is that they don't let the interviewee explain. I suspect that you won't be allowed to explain your reasoning in an actual work situation, either. That is not a good situation, and you should seriously consider whether you want to work at this place. Remember: interviews are also for the candidate to get to know the employer better, not only vice versa! – Stephan Kolassa Mar 27 '15 at 7:49
  • 3
    Your second/last paragraphs remind me of xkcd.com/386 – Brandin Mar 27 '15 at 12:04

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.