An interview is more than a test to get the job. Applicants should scrutinize the company just as thoroughly as the company investigates them. It should be a back-and-forth to see if the position is a good fit for both parties.
Sometimes though, we are so desperate for a job that we can’t be too demanding. However, even in those situations, we should still pay attention to red flags that the company we are interviewing for is toxic.
You don’t have to figure out all the warning signs on your own. While scrolling through my favorite Reddit sub, I came across an excellent question for job seekers: what are some red flags that appear during an interview which indicate the workplace is toxic?
Here are some of the best answers regarding red flags you shouldn’t ignore while interviewing for a new job.
Managers Berate Employees
The top comment told the story of an interview they attended where the manager kept interrupting the appointment to yell at a low-level tech employee.
If supervisors show no qualms about atrocious behavior towards an employee while interviewing you, be assured that they will have no issues treating you the same way once you join their team.
An employer who stresses they require flexibility during an interview will absolutely expect you to work nights, weekends, and long hours, according to one Redditor.
The commenter also warned that these employers would expect you to switch shifts at a moment’s notice, and they will have no regard for your work-life balance.
If you didn’t apply for a sales position, but the word “sales” is mentioned during the interview, you can expect that a large portion of your job will be sales.
One Redditor shared that they worked in tech support but were required to try to upsell customers on every call.
Pushing You To Start
When a hiring manager pushes you to accept a position before discussing salary, you can rest assured that they won’t pay well.
Some scammy sales positions will do anything to get employees to sign up, except, of course, paying them a fair wage. Others expect you to start before you’re available or try to manipulate potential employees into working for free before their start date.
Late for the Interview
We all know things come up unexpectedly, but if an interview doesn’t start on time and the company offers no explanation or apology, you can bet that they won’t respect your time when you work there.
One Redditor quipped that they were scrolling through the thread of interview red flags while waiting for an interview over an hour past due.
Another user mentioned that if an interviewer says the workplace is a family, they don’t mean the happy, caring, loving kind.
A workplace “family” is always the toxic type of family that expects you to go above and beyond for them while offering little in return.
Admitting Lack of Work-Life Balance
Some employers will come right out and say that they don’t want to hire folks who expect a nine-to-five job.
Redditors mentioned phrases such as “We’re not looking for someone with a nine-to-five mentality” and “we work hard, we play hard” as red flags that you’ll be working long hours whether you want to or not.
Expecting Light Housekeeping
One Redditor offered a niche response for those looking for childcare or nanny positions: Be on the lookout for moms who mention housekeeping during the interview.
Oftentimes these parents expect their nanny to double as a maid, without extra pay, of course.
Too Many Young People
Job Seekers should check out the employees during an interview. One Redditor said that a well-established company should have a mix of employees from all generations.
Companies that only employ younger folks probably treat their workers poorly. No one stays long enough to get older while working there.
If everyone you encounter while interviewing is in a bad mood, you’re safe to assume it’s due to a toxic work environment.
If the person conducting the interview can’t even be bothered to put on a happy face, you know it’s really bad.
A Job is a Job
If you can afford it, you should reject offers from workplaces proudly blaring these interview red flags that Redditors pointed out. When toxic companies can no longer fill their positions, they will adapt or go out of business.
However, we know that sometimes you need a job, regardless of how terrible the work environment is. If you have to, take the job, but don’t give up your job search, because you’ll likely want to move on soon.
Melanie Allen is an American journalist and happiness expert. She has bylines on MSN, the AP News Wire, Wealth of Geeks, Media Decision, and numerous media outlets across the nation. She covers a wide range of topics centered around self-actualization and the quest for a fulfilling life.