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It is NOT ok to Bring Your Mom to an Interview!

At first I thought it was a joke, or a singular case, but then the topic kept reoccurring: the idea of it being ok and sometimes encouraged to have your mom hold your hand when you get your first job. Let me take a pause—WHAT!? Why are companies beginning to adhere to this idea?

If today’s youth are going to make it in the real world, they’re going to have to take the first step into it. I agree, parents are a huge support system, I ask mine for advice regularly, but there is something extremely wrong when an adult can’t function without their parent’s consent.

During a recent session at SXSW, Praise and A’s: Maximizing a Millennial Workforce, an audience member mentioned their company, a large creative agency, where it was so common for parents to accompany their children to interviews that they actually created a separate waiting room for them.  Are you serious? I’m going to be really clear: If you’re interviewing at Pyxl and your mom walks in with you, you can walk right back out that door.

But wait, there’s more! I most recently stumbled upon this article suggesting that the best way to hold a young hire accountable is to call his/her parents when they are having a problem. It actually states “it’s time HR pros and leaders start having parents in on our performance conversations.” I am so dumbfounded that I feel like I don’t even need an explanation about why this is a horrible idea. But there are apparently people out there who think this is a step in the right direction. One reason this author justifies the idea is that “most leaders are terrible at holding their employees accountable.” Well it looks like you need to lead by example and hold your managers accountable for their teams; it is their job to hold their employees accountable for their work and actions.

Have we given up so completely on being good managers that it has come to pushing responsibility back on the parents? The parent’s job is over; they raised the child the best they could, instilled morals, lead by example etc. It is now our job as leaders and managers to be a mentor, a friend and most importantly when it’s needed, a boss.

I am really fascinated to know how many people are on each side of this fence, so please let me know in the comments section!

  • Kelly

    Seriously? How do companies think this is ok? I feel like new hires are going to expect to be coddled throughout their entire career.

  • you are 100% correct. it is so not okay to bring your mother on a job interview. i can’t believe companies are actually accepting this practice. i cannot imagine bringing my mom to a job interview.

  • This is so mind blowing for me… I don’t even know what to say; except I agree 100% with you. A friend of mine had his mom go with him to help negotiate through an issue he was having at college with a teacher and I gave him countless hours of lecturing over how stupid that was that he had to bring mommy along… and that’s taking into account that she had a stake in the thing because she was helping him pay for it. I feel a million times stronger about people bringing mommy along for an interview! It’s time to be a man or a woman and take responsibility for YOUR stuff.

    “…But she gave me a ride because I don’t have a car” Great, she can wait outside.

    “…But she wanted to know how the interview went” Great, go grab something to eat AFTER the interview and catch up.

    “…I thought maybe they’d want to talk to her for a reference” Yeah… no, they don’t. And besides, that’s what that thing called a “reference sheet” is for; but while we’re on it, don’t put your parents on that either unless they specifically ask for it.
    I love my parents and greatly appreciate the advice they have given me over the years and continue to consult with them on a regular basis. I would never even consider doing this… like it would have never even crossed my mind.

  • I completely agree Kelly! It’s important to do things on your own, even if you fail at first it’s a great learning experience.

  • I agree, it sounds horrible! I begin to wonder who’s getting the most contentment from it, the child or the parent?

  • Great points Dan! I completely agree, for every reason that could be presented there are better ways to approach it.

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