Odd Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

| 3 min read

There are common interview questions like, “Kindly tell us about yourself?” and there are odd interview questions like, “How many basketballs can you fit into this room?” but what you’re probably wondering is why do employers ask such weird questions?

We already know that regular interviews are stressful but interviewers sometimes throw in these tough questions to have a first-hand experience of how fast you think as well as how your mind works. These questions can easily throw you off balance and we have decided to take a look at a few of them and more importantly, how to respond to them.

Question 1

If You Find a Machine That Prints ?400 for a Lifetime, How Much Would You Be Willing to Pay For It?odd-interview-questions

The purpose of this odd interview question is to shake you up a little. The tricky part of this question is that a lot of candidates will not realise that the ?400 sum is a lifetime total. To answer this question correctly, your answer should not exceed ?400. Also, note that this figure might differ, depending on the number the interviewer decides to throw at you.

Question 2

What Type of Tree are You?Odd_interview_Questions_-_What_Type_of_Tree_are_You

Trees have many traits; seasonal, strength, fruitful and more. The purpose of this question is to have you choose a tree and explain how its traits and attributes will fit into the job role you’re interviewing for. Note that it should relate to your personality traits, interests and hobbies.

Question 3

The Chicken or Egg, Which Comes First?Odd_Interview_Questions_-_The_Chicken_or_Egg,_Which_Comes_First

This statement and odd interview question has been long considered having an infinite sequence. Your rightness or wrongness in an interview situation will only be determined by your ability to convince the interviewer about your choice. Get down to being convincing and backing your claims up with reasons.

Question 4

How Many BasketBalls Can Fill a Bus?Odd_Interview_Questions_-_How_Many_BasketBall_Can_Fill_a_Bus

The hiring manager isn’t looking for the right answer. Rather, this question challenges you to show how you approach the task of solving problems. It is not much about the correct answer or knowing how many balls can really fill a bus. The hiring manager is more interested in how you try to arrive at the answer and not the answer itself. For example, you can start by stating how you believe that by finding out the dimension of the ball, you can begin to calculate how xyz number of balls can fill a seat and the leg space on the bus. You then proceed to multiply the number of rows and seats in the bus to arrive at a rough estimate.

Question 5

Would you rather fight one horse-sized duck or 100 duck-sized horses?

Like most odd interview questions, this one is not any different. It is not about the right or wrong answer. Rather, the recruitment manager or HR manager wants to know how you approach tough tasks or problems. This question helps your interviewer find out if you prefer working on one large problem at a time or if you would rather tackle several smaller problems at the same time.

Have you been asked any odd interview question, please share your experience in the comment.

Princewill Akuma
Princewill is a marketing maven, who is passionate about user-centric marketing. His experience spans Tech service, Recruitment, Media and Entertainment sectors across Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana and Tanzania. He's a career adviser, mentor, hobbyist DJ and a lover of cardio exercise with a personal record of 23.49 km. Let's connect, i'll love to hear from you.


  1. Thank you Princewill for sharing this. My question is what should one say when an HR manager asks questions like what are the reasons you left your former employer and why do you want to work with us. Thanks

    • Hello Favour,
      Always say the truth without talking ill about the company and your former colleagues. Some of the reasons to leave are to find a new challenge, develop yourself, try out new industry/skill etc. and on why you want to work them make about the value you will provide to the company and also value for yourself. E.g Because I would love to focus your marketing strategy to be more user-centric as in my last position, data shows that consumers engage more with organisations that are user-centric and also this would help grow my experience in working a more challenging industry.

  2. Thanks for sharing this great information. Here I want to share one more weird interview question answer i.e. If you were a fruit, what kind would you be and why? Don’t automatically blurt out your favorite fruit! Think of a fruit that relates to your personality. For example, you could say a pineapple because you have a strong exterior (character) but are also very sweet and compassionate.

  3. excellent post, very informative. I ponder why
    the other specialists of this sector do not notice this.
    You should continue your writing. I am sure, you have a huge
    readers’ base already!

    • Hi Ibanga,
      Your ability to answer this will be based on your prior research before the interview and on the pay say how much value you’ll bring to the organisation also considering your experience (if any) and industry standards.

      Best Regards

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