Job applicant preparing to leave interview

Internet supports employee who walks away from combative interview

Members of a popular internet forum rushed to defend a potential employee who abruptly ended a controversial job interview.

In a viral reddit post published on r/AmITeA**hole, Redditor u/AnxiousSprinkles396 (aka the original poster or OP) described the challenges they faced during their recent job search and said they were forced to cut an interview short after he was reprimanded for asking for money.

Titled, “[Am I the a**hole] for walking away from a job interview when they wouldn’t give me a salary?” after has received nearly 10,000 votes and 2,000 comments in the past ten hours.

Explaining that they are nearing the end of their current employment contract, the original poster said they have interviewed numerous companies and noticed a common thread between many of them: an unwillingness to release salary information.

The original poster also said they have implemented a system to fight the widespread secrecy.

“If they don’t tell me what they’re actually paying in the first 15 minutes of the interview, I’ll ask,” OP wrote. “If they don’t tell me in plain terms…I’ll thank them for their time and leave.”

Noting that they’d already walked out of four separate interviews, the original poster said they’d walked out of another one yesterday.

“I went to a local startup… and I fit in every [check box] they needed … so I was their number one candidate,” OP wrote. “After 15 minutes they hadn’t talked about compensation at all, so I just asked.”

“The interview told me that ‘it’s ill-mannered to ask for a salary so early in the process,’” OP continued. “I just smiled and said I don’t agree and I wouldn’t waste my time.”

“He tried to argue back that they were a startup and yada yada, so I just did what I did before. I got up, thanked him for his time and left,” OP added. “The recruiter blew up my phone asking what the hell I was doing and who I thought I was. Apparently the owner of the company…blew on the recruiter because of my behavior.”

Interviews, designed to find the right match between user companies and potential employees, can more hostile than friendly

While an applicant’s qualifications should remain at the forefront of the conversation, other topics of conversation usually cause interviews to spiral out of control, much like the situation described by the original poster.

From sloppy working conditions to questionable codes of conduct, potential employees are caught off guard by factors other than the job itself.

This is especially true when it comes to money.

Despite the fact that a majority of working people are fully motivated by paychecks, employers often play with restraint when it comes to releasing salary information, claiming that they look for employees who care more about the job than the money.

But in many cases, employers are unable or unwilling to provide the money needed to bring in qualified employees, and as a result, they try to push any salary discussion as far as possible.

“The truth is, to some extent, these practices are about hiring people for the lowest amount the employer can get away with,” Slate reported in 2018. “And while you may think, of course, that’s just business, data shows that these practices disproportionately harm women and people of color.”

Applicant preparing to leave the job interview
Members of Reddit’s r/AmITeA**hole forum defended an applicant who said they dumped a job interview after the interviewer refused to release salary information.
julief514/iStock / Getty Images Plus

In the comments section of the viral Reddit post, Redditors acknowledged the potential harm associated with withholding salary information and praised the original poster for dumping their application. The interviewer declined to discuss how much money they would make.

†[Not the a**hole]Redditor wrote u/petrichorInk in the top comment of the post, which has received more than 10,500 votes. “They could have just told you what the salary is.”

“They know damn how much budget they have. They choose not to because they don’t want to pay you more than the smallest amount they can get away with,” they continued. “You dodged a bullet.”

Redditor u/halfStackScratchDev, whose commentary has received more than 6,000 votes, echoed that sentiment.

†[Not the a**hole]’ they wrote. “And blowing up your phone is insane.”

“By asking for a salary, you revealed an important culture issue in that company,” they continued. Also, do you work with? [the] recruiter to find these vacancies for you? if, closed the loser

In a separate response, which has received nearly 2,500 votes, Redditor u/DensityOfThought took the interviewer’s claim that it is “ill-mannered” to ask about potential salaries and flipped it right on its head.

“It’s bad ways not to tell people what they’re going to earn, as money is the main reason people have a job in the first place,” they wrote. “Anyone who claims otherwise is bullying.”

“Saying things like ‘we’re family here’… an indication that a company is actively trying to get away with some shady stuff, like paying people as little as possible, not paying [for] extra hours, and getting angry when people call in sick.”

news week contacted u/AnxiousSprinkles396 for comment.

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