If you have spent the weekend in an orgy of self-indulgence, do not divulge this during a job interview. Especially do not say so during a job interview with a buff, European, health-conscious hedge fund manager at one of London’s newer hedge funds.
The hedge fund manager in question, who declined to be named, but is a BarCap banker turned alternative investment professional, says he has a stock of interview questions intended to elicit the nature of candidates’ lives external to work.
“It’s a touchy area, but we ask a lot of questions around personal life,” he tells us. “We don’t think people change much in terms of how they behave inside and outside work.”
In particular, he is keen to probe how people organise their time. “We want people with discipline,” he adds. “If someone gets up early, goes to the gym and looks after themselves, that’s a good sign. We don’t want someone who stays out until 4am.”
Questions asked to elicit this information include:
“What do you enjoy doing outside work?”
“What kind of exercise do you do?”
“Give an example when you have juggled competing priorities in a non-work situation.”
“We try to be very discreet,” says the hedge fund manager. “We do get some people who say they like to party at the weekend, and we would reject those.”