Please Don’t Involve Your Parents in Your Interview Process

By: Lauren Mineau

Some surprising numbers were recently revealed about parents’ involvement in their adult children’s job searches.

To some, it may seem obvious that parents should not be waiting in the lobby alongside a potential interview candidate. But that’s really happening, along with many other meddling mechanisms.

Researchers at Michigan State surveyed employers who recruit recent college graduates and asked specifically how they’d seen parents get involved in their child’s job search. Here’s a sampling of what they found:

• 40 percent had dealt with parents who were trying to obtain information about the company on their children’s behalf

• 31 percent had received resumes submitted by parents on behalf of their children

• 26 percent had contact with parents who tried to convince them to hire their children

• 15 percent had heard complaints from parents if their child was not hired

• 12 percent had dealt with parents who tried to make interview arrangements

• 9 percent had contact with a parent who tried to negotiate their child’s salary or benefits

• 6 percent had received calls from parents who were advocating for their child’s raise or a promotion

• 4 percent had seen parents attend the interview with their child

Researchers also asked for any interesting anecdotes that were specific to any of these situations. Many had stories to share, researchers noted. One talked of a lengthy discussion with a mother on why the company could not arrange a special interview for her son who could not make the scheduled on-campus interview.  Employers acknowledged that they were more likely to see mothers collecting company information and making arrangements for interviews.  Fathers usually appeared during negotiations, when the hiring decision did not go in their child’s favor, or when their son or daughter was being disciplined by the supervisor.

Providing your child with support, a second opinion, or sending them interesting job postings are all things that could help. But please, think twice before actually submitting their resume for them.

Read the study here.