If there was a monkey hanging from a chandelier, how would you get it down?

  | James Innes

If there was a monkey hanging from a chandelier, how would you get it down?

Alternative and related questions:

If there was a venomous snake sunbathing on your patio how would you get rid of it?

The meaning behind the question:

We’re clearly getting into the weird and wacky with this question – but interviewers have been known to ask such questions. You might think you’ll never get asked such a seemingly ridiculous question in an interview. However, I can personally vouch that questions like this do get asked – having been asked precisely this question myself many years ago!

Your answer:

There is no ‘right’ answer to this sort of question. It is purely a test of your ability to analyse a problem and identify possible solutions. Once you realise this you will hopefully be a lot less rattled by the question than I was at what was virtually my first ever interview! Don’t let yourself be rattled by the question – and don’t lose your sense of humour either. However, telling the interviewer you’d probably get your rifle out is unlikely to go down well!


Interesting question! I suppose there are a number of possible solutions to this problem. It’s a case of identifying these possible solutions and selecting the one which has the best chance of success. The most obvious idea which springs to my mind is to try to entice it down by offering it, for example, a banana. Alternatively, I could try to scare it down. Shouting at it would probably make it even less likely to come down, but flicking the light switch on and off might work. Spraying water at it might also convince him to budge but there’s perhaps too much risk of collateral damage. Failing that, I think I’d find the monkey’s owner or keeper and I’d delegate the task to them!

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