Pots and Pans


A Chief Executive Officer of a major corporation was interviewing three candidates to fill a position he had available. The first candidate came into the office. Mr. CEO asked him some preliminary questions. He then asked the candidate if he had noticed the street vendor on the corner. Mr. CEO explained that today was his wife’s birthday and he had not yet purchased a gift. He asked the candidate if he would go down to the vendor and find out what he was selling. The candidate returned in a few minutes and reported back to Mr. CEO that the street vendor was selling pots and pans. Mr. CEO concluded the interview and asked the second candidate to come into his office.

After a few preliminary questions, Mr. CEO explained to this candidate that today was his wife’s birthday and he had not yet purchased a gift. He asked the second candidate if he would go down to the vendor and find out what he was selling. The second candidate returned in a few minutes and reported to Mr. CEO that the vendor was selling copper and porcelain cookware for around $59.95 a set. Mr. CEO concluded the interview and asked the third candidate to come into his office.

After a few preliminary questions, Mr. CEO explained to the third candidate that today was his wife’s birthday and he had not yet purchased a gift. He asked the third candidate if he would go down to the vendor and find out what he was selling. The third candidate returned in a few minutes and reported to Mr. CEO that the vendor was selling copper and porcelain cookware, each carried a lifetime warranty and sets were priced at $59.95, $79.95 and $99.95, including tax and delivery. The third candidate also presented Mr. CEO with an order form and indicated that he would be happy to facilitate the purchase of some cookware for his wife if he would like to complete the form. After a few more questions, the interview was concluded.

Who do you think was offered the job?

Of course, the moral of this story is about details. It is always important to find out as much information as you can and to always provide more information rather than less information. It should be everyone’s goal to never hear the words "pots and pans" which is an indication that you did not provide enough or the right information.

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