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Dinner out with business associates, potential clients, and co-workers is quite common in the corporate world. In fact, extending an invite to the person’s spouse is also normal. I was shocked when a candidate who was going to become a potential manager/partner, in the interview process and close to an offer, got offended by our client asking if he and his spouse would like to, “Go to dinner?”
He acted indignant and shocked. I was told it was inappropriate and asked, “Is my spouse interviewing for the job?” No, it was just dinner and then it got WEIRD. Really WEIRD.
My client was just extending a friendly offer for them to all get to know each other better. It was a small firm and they get together often. It had nothing to do with the spouse’s race, sex, education, looks, gender, interviewing the spouse, etc. It was just dinner. A basic civil small talk dinner to meet and see if a future partnership could be made. Dinner.
The offer was pulled, the hope of a new employee was smashed and I was relieved. Can you imagine the dinner conversation had they met?