We’ve all heard the phrase “It’s a small world”, and “What goes around, comes around”.  This week I heard three separate examples from three different people about how true that proved in a job interview setting.  Their examples are very interesting.

First example was from a college career counselor who was a manager of professional recruiting for a large corporation.  One morning at 7:50 AM she was running for the elevator (her office was on the 30th floor of a 40 floor building), and as the doors started to close, she caught the eye of a neatly dressed man in the elevator.  He made no move to hold the doors—and you guessed it—that was her 8 AM interview.  Did he get the position? Nope.   The candidate was interviewing for a marketing and sales position and one quality that every hiring manager wants in a candidate is to know that they are always friendly, courteous and helpful.  In that split second, this candidate did not demonstrate that they possessed those virtues.

Here’s another example, this time with a happier ending. A friend was interviewing for a position and stopped to help someone along the side of the road change a flat tire.  When the candidate got to the company he apologized to the receptionist for being late and even a little greasy.  When the receptionist brought him to meet the hiring manager, you guessed it—he’d change the tire of the hiring manager.  He got the job.

And the third example for the day.  A funny one.  A guy in my networking group was telling me that when he lived in an apartment in Manhattan, he would occasionally head up to the roof for a little sunbathing.  Occasionally he would see one of his female neighbors on the roof sunbathing as well—topless.  Did he sneak a peek—you don’t SERIOUSLY need me to answer that do you?  One day he went in for an interview at a company, and you guessed it—the HR manager was his topless neighbor.

And no, he didn’t get the job.  He’s pretty sure it was because he’d seen too much.

So there you have it.  You have no idea how the people you meet today will appear as characters later in your life.  Your best bet, always be on your best behavior.  Unless you’re in Vegas.