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Should parents go on their child’s job interview?

Maybe it’s a sign of the times — a new way of doing things for a new generation — but I’m not sold on it: taking mom to the job interview.

The folks at RSM Richter, one of Canada’s largest independent accounting and business advisory firms, have released research that shows one in five Canadians believe parents should be allowed to attend job interviews with their children.

Interestingly, more men than women want parents involved: 22% of all men surveyed believe parents should be allowed to accompany children on job interviews, versus 16% of women.

“Any company that actively recruits should regularly track the attitudes and expectations of potential employees — especially those just entering the workforce — to ensure recruiting strategies match expectations,” says Lisa Fusina, a human resources manager with RSM Richter.

“That’s why (we) commissioned this survey. It is understandable that parents want to help their children make the right decisions in all aspects of their life, including their career.”

The research also shows that more than half of all Canadians agree that parents should have the opportunity to review their children’s employment contracts and nearly half agree that parents should have a significant role in the career choices of their children.

The survey of 2,000 Canadians was conducted for RSM Richter by Decima Research.

While the numbers from province to province don’t differ greatly, the survey did find that Quebec parents want the most involvement in their children’s career choices, while B.C. and Ontario parents are the least interested.

“We’ve been getting more and more requests for information about our firm from parents of candidates,” says Marc Berwald, RSM Richter’s vice-president of human resources.

“This demonstrates to us the need to be conscious of what everyone wants to know about working here, but it also represents an opportunity for us to better understand the kind of people we’re recruiting.”

P.J. Harston is the business editor of the London Free Press. Reach him by e-mail at