Job interviews can be nerve-wracking, even for experienced developers. So it’s a good case to be prepared for that!
In this post, I’m gonna give you 4 tips on what type of questions you should be prepared off and with practical examples that I used for myself.
What is your elevator pitch?
This is the one and most important question that can be asked! The people who interview you want to get to know you.
No! They want to listen to your hour-long life story. They want to know who you are, what you like about your work, and where you’re interested in.
So you have to think about your pitch!
My pitch would be something like this:
So in a few sentences, I’ve told a lot about myself, my age, where I live, and what I love to do the most in my work and spare time.
I’ve used this so many times that I can tell you this in a natural way. Telling this naturally is very important because nobody who has someone for a job interview wants to hear a scripted version 😉. No, they want to hear your story!
If you don’t have an introduction or pitch ready, you can use mine, but better is to take inspiration off it to make it your own!
- What is your name
- …. your age
- Where you live
- Do you have a family or are you living with your parents
- What do you enjoy the most in your work
- What do you do in your spare time? Even if it’s not related to your work.
Tell 3 things you are good and bad in
The first time I got an interview I was asked this question. I could tell more than 3 things I’m good at.
But I couldn’t say (even didn’t dare to) anything that I was not so good in! Just scared that they thought I wasn’t good enough!
After that first time, I prepared this question! I thought this will never happen to me again!
So I came up with this for myself.
Interviewer: Tell me 3 positive and 3 negative things about yourself
Me: 3 positives are; I’m a team player, driven to share my knowledge with junior team members and I’m always willing to help.
3 negatives are; 1. I’m not a morning person, but I don’t get grumpy but early on the days I need some time to get up-to-speed. 2. I have moments when I forget things, so i always have a notes app or pen and paper next to me, to write these things down. 3. If I do the same things for a long time I get bored. But I try to resolve that by diving into new techniques in my spare time to find a challenge.
An interviewer knows that no one is perfect. They want to learn more about who you are by asking what your positives and negatives are.
I do not want a company to look at me differently by what I think my negatives are, so I explain how I cope with these negatives. This shows that I am always adapting and willing to grow.
Describe your process on what to do when you’re stuck or get an error with your coding assignment
I have conducted many job interviews. This question is to see how strong your problem-solving mindset is.
There is no wrong or right answer to this. It’s more a view into your process and a check to see where you need help.
The typical developer/programmer will spend a lot of time on their own to find a solution for a bug. Many times these long hours can be prevented if you give yourself a 30 min window to solve it yourself. After that, you should ask for help.
If you get this question explain every step that you would take.
For example, you say:
1. I would first Google my error
2. If that wouldn’t have given me the answer I would have used the dev tools in the browser to walk through the code.
3. If after 30 minutes I couldn’t fix it, I would ask my team member to solve it together.
This sounds like a perfect situation to describe it.
Do you prefer to work in a team or alone
Because every person is different, it’s good to know if you are a team player, prefer to work alone, or a combination of the two.
For instance, maybe you generally are a team player, but when you have a complicated problem, you like your space.
Or you like to do a pair-programming session to attack a bug with a team-member.
No matter how you prefer to work, there is no right or wrong answer, but be prepared to answer this. This is a great way to show companies that you know how you thrive in the workplace.
Personally, I’m a typical team player who needs some time on its own. I love to share my knowledge and experience with others but I also like to learn from others. But when I have to dive deep I want to do it first by myself, if I got stuck I want to attack this problem with one of my team members.
I’ve gathered a couple of aspiring developers around the world on a Discord server, feel free if you like to join in.
I hope that understanding how to answer these 4 questions helps you better prepare for your upcoming interviews. Preparation is half the work, and when you are prepared you will be a lot more confident!
If you have questions or need help with preparation for a job interview, please let me know in the comments 😉
Happy Coding 🚀