Silicon Valley tech firms are renowned for their unique, if not off-kilter, hiring practises – weeding out the candidates they want from those they don’t.
To get the right hires, Elon Musk, Founder of SpaceX and Tesla, historically relied upon an abstract geographical question, asking interviewees: “You're standing on the surface of the Earth. You walk one mile south, one mile west, and one mile north. You end up exactly where you started. Where are you?”
These kinds of puzzle-like questions earned the tech pioneers a cult following but some software giants, including Google and Musk, have since updated their hiring processes to something more usual.
The Tesla boss now queries candidates on how they’ve reacted to conundrums in their life, requiring those that make it to interview to “tell [him] the story of their life, and the decisions that they made along the way, and why they made them."
Whilst former Google recruiter, Gary Laakman McDowell said the company has now banned bizarre questions, with the former SVP of People Operations at Google, Laszlo Block, telling the NYT that the company now prefers to find out how an applicant reacts to problems they encounter throughout their professional and personal life.
Laakman McDowell added: "If an interviewer were to ask a candidate a brain teaser, despite the policy, the hiring committee would likely disregard this interviewer’s feedback and send a note back telling the interviewer not to ask such silly questions."
Business Insider have collected some of the questions and puzzles that Google applicants will no longer be asked. Click next to find seven of the weirdest that we’ve found.
Answers are on the final page, if you think you’ve cracked these tech world riddles before then, tell us in the comments...