Application and Interview Questions

Collection of some of our application and interview questions.  We use these questions to assess candidate’s psychological, intellectual, and emotional makeup, intuition, social skills, experience, knowledge, and aptitude.  These questions also give candidates a sense of our culture and style and function as a filter so we don’t get flooded with like 500 applications after posting an ad on craigslist.

We don’t have a “cut-off point,” where a candidate has to answer certain number of questions “correctly.”  We only use these questions to better understand the sort of values, personalities, and skill-sets we’d be working with.  We treat hiring more as an art than a science and will hire someone with no cooking exp or a low creativity “score.”  We’re more concerned about our ability to develop a candidate, which often involves having them unlearn habits acquired at school and previous jobs.

We don’t believe in innate abilities.  We believe anyone can learn anything as long as they’re willing to put in the work.

Intuition Questions (Observation skills test)

  • What does the CEO of Walmart drive?
  • What is the guy driving a Corvette having for dinner Thursday evening?
  • Explain the popularity of Lady Gaga.  Compare and contrast her popularity to that of Eminem.
  • Tell us about something you’re embarrassed to enjoy. Why do you enjoy it? What about it is embarrassing?


Psychological Assessment

  • Why are you not special?
  • Write your great, great, great granddaughter’s obituary.

Social Skills

  • List 3 ways to say “Fuck You” without saying “Fuck you.”
  • Fight in kitchen.  Hot soup, butcher knife, last month’s receipts.  Which do you throw?
  • Take a look behind the bar.  Which weapon do you choose for fight with customer? What’s the first thing you do with it?

Creativity Assessment

  • July, Mount Baker.  You arrive at a cabin.  In the fridge there’s a whole chicken (gizzards, feet, neck included), 5 eggs and 2 cups of flour.  There’s also a blender, a fork, a spatula, a pan, a water source, a crockpot, electricity, and a charcoal grill.  You decide to make fried scrambled eggs.   How do you make it and what else do you make?Create a 4 course meal with the following ingredients (and nothing else, including oil): Kale, oxtail, vinegar, carrot, potato, strawberry, egg, red onion.  And the following equipment: Butain burner, pan, soup pot, bread knife, spatula. Water source is available.
  • Write your great, great, great granddaughter’s obituary.
  • Some people ask “why can’t we just all get along?”  Think of a reason why it’s better for humanity if we don’t all get along.
  • Watch Cibo Matto’s “Know Your Chicken” video on Youtube.  Click your way through Youtube to an Iron Chef episode.  Save the History.
  • How old will you be when you die?

Reading Comprehension and Communication Skills

  • Do you run a trade deficit with a business?  If you do, are you concerned about it?
  • Economics isn’t a zero-sum game.  Explain this concept to a 10 year old.

Business Acumen

  • How did a grocery store cashier, making $9/hour, convince her employer to give her a $5/hour raise?
  • How would you improve student performance at a typical American high school without increasing funding?
  • Use the scientific method to solve one of your personal problems.

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