When it comes to appearing for a job interview, we all prepare ourselves by finding out about our potential employers, but at times we are asked an off-the-wall question that leaves us stumped.
In order to help us prepare for such questions, a two-year-old US website compiled a list of some of the top oddball interview questions.
It gets its information directly from employees who work at 84,000 companies, according to news reports.
According to Rusty Rueff, a consultant at the website's company, who is an author and former head of human resources said ninety percent of people don't know how to deal with them.
Rueff advises, first you have to realize that the interviewer isn't trying to make you look stupid, as stupid as the question may seem.
With a question like "How many hair salons are there in Japan", the interviewer is giving you an opportunity to demonstrate your thought processes.
Rueff says you should think out loud, like the contestants on Who Wants to be a Millionaire? You might start by saying, we'd have to know the population of Japan, and then we'd have to figure out what percentage of them get their hair done and how often.
Rueff says it's fine to pull out a pen and paper and start doing some calculations right there in the interview.
Another example, which may seem equally impossible to answer: Why are manhole covers round?
Just start thinking through the question, out loud, Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio, a career services consultant at advises.
"I would say, a round manhole cover could keep the framework of the tunnel stronger, because a round frame is much stronger than a square frame," she suggested.
Other weird-seeming questions, like "If you were a brick in a wall, which brick would you be and why," or "If you could be any animal, what would you be and why," are really just invitations to show a side of your personality.
Thanasoulis-Cerrachio says a friend who is chief executive of a market research company used to ask applicants what kind of car they would be.
"She wanted someone fast, who thought quickly. She wanted someone who wanted to be a Maserati, not a Bentley," Thanasoulis-Cerrachio said.
For the brick question, Thanasoulis-Cerrachio advises saying something like, "I would want to be a foundational brick because I'm a solid person. You can build on my experience and I will never let you down."