Overthinking the Interview

A few thoughts on the interview process

Since I have graduated, I have yet to receive an offer to work as a developer from any of the companies for which I have interviewed! Despite my lack of success, I thought that it would be beneficial for myself to analyze what I’ve been doing well and what I can work on. My hope is that this can be helpful for you in some way!

  1. [Good] Being prepared with the Basics

    The day before the interview, it has always served me well to lay out my outfit, pack my bag (resume, pens, laptop, mints, etc.), and confirm my meeting for the next day. Don’t be late and in a panic because you forgot to prep the day before!

  2. [Bad] Shadowboxing (playing the scenario out in your head)

    No one can predict the outcome of an interview and it has only psyched me out when I jump down the rabbithole of rehearsing my responses to “Top 10 questions asked during a technical interview”.

My suggestion to anyone going into an interview for the first time is this: Jot the bullet points of what you would like to convey and be comfortable with working them into conversation. Practice with your friends if you can! Comfort is key.

  1. [Good] Starting with small talk

On the same note of getting comfortable, it has been helpful to start the interview off with small talk (I always tend to talk about the food around the area. Who doesn’t love food?). It gives both the interviewer and the interviewee to feel each other’s personalities out without diving straight into the formal interview.

  1. [Bad] Counting chicks before they hatch

My folly has always been being too enthusiastic about joining a team. I start imaging life as a developer in a company before I even get the job yet! I admit that it has been a double-edged sword; on one side, the interviewer can see that I am eager and optimistic about starting in their company, but it hurts my chances when I get overzealous and over-anxious during my first meet.

With that being said, I realize that I will not likely receive an offer with technical skill or personality alone. Each of these interviews seemed to evaluate multiple variables like my stack, technical knowledge, experience, personality type, and professional background. Instead of focusing on each dice roll, I am going to try focusing on rolling the dice much more often. Of course, I still need to build my resume.

Hopefully my next post will be up by the time I receive an offer!


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