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The one question that ended candidate’s job interview in minutes divides internet




The Block auctioneer and real estate industry coach Tom Panos has vented about a young candidate whose job interview question triggered an abrupt end to their meeting, and divided the internet.

Panos posted a 40-second rant about the interaction on TikTok, but netizens were quick to slam him as a “boomer” and his expectations as “red flags”.

WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: The one question which abruptly ended man’s job interview.

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“Get in line. Stay in line,” Panos’s video was captioned. “Getting sick of these punks. I just terminated the meeting after 12 minutes,” a text overlay added.

“So I wasted 15 minutes today in an interview, interviewing (for) an associate to join one of the real estate teams — the guy’s never worked in real estate before, early 20s,” the CEO and Founder of Real Estate Gym said on the clip.

“(He) asked me what commissions he’d be paid, asked me what hours he’s expected to be there, asked me what days he’d have off during the week.”

But aside from the candidate’s queries about proposed schedules and compensation, the final straw for Panos was a question about why the candidate should choose to work for the employer.

“Give me three reasons why I should pick this employer vs. someone else,” Panos said the candidate asked him.

“I just said to the guy: ‘I can’t think of one. Let’s just finish this off, this is not for you, this is not for me, this is not for us’.”

Real Estate boss Tom Panos has been slammed over his controversial tirade on an unsuccessful candidate. Credit: TikTok/Instagram

The video sparked a backlash online. While some netizens noted that the candidate could have rephrased his final question, many still came to his defence.

“If he has the guts to ask those questions, then I imagine he’d be a good real estate agent,” one person said.

“Those are very normal questions. Interviews go both ways,” another said.

“If you, as an employer, can’t even provide one reason why you’re a good company to work for, then you seriously need to take a step back and reassess,” another said.

The online debate highlighted a changing attitude towards recruitment.

“See ya later, old man. Times are changing,” one person said.

“The irony is you think the things they asked about are red flags — they’re yours, not his,” another said.

‘There are better ways to ask it’

However, several netizens saw the situation from the perspectives of both Panos and his candidate, noting the delicate phrasing applicants and employers must use in their negotiations, and who gets to ask what.

“Good questions, but you don’t ask for your wage when you have no experience. You take what you get and then leverage that experience in your next job for higher pay,” one TikTok user said.

“Not saying it’s a bad question, but it probably comes across as cocky, especially with no experience,” another said.

“There are better ways to ask it.”

Téa Angelos, the Australian founder and CEO of Smart Women Society, previously told 7Life that coming prepared with questions to ask your employer at the end of an interview can help applicants stand out in a crowded market.

Several of Téa’s examples, which Seek describes as “neutral questions”, may have resulted in the answers Panos’s unsuccessful candidate was hoping to hear:

  • What is your favourite part about working here at (company)?
  • Can you tell me a little bit more about the company culture?
  • What are some of the growth opportunities in this role?

“These questions allow you to ... make an informed decision about where it’s a good fit for you,” Téa said.