Discussion on: What i've learned from blowing my first remote interview

sebvercammen profile image
Sébastien Vercammen

Don't "control" (= inhibit) your emotions. Don't try to learn or know everything.

Do study the basics - everything in comp. sci. are layers on top of layers. So if you know the layers below, it's easy to teach you the next one.

Do learn to communicate better about your current experience and the needs of the business.

What value can you add today, how can you do that specifically, whose work in the team will elevate yours? Ask them. "Writing code" is not a value, it's a pastime. Writing code can create value, but then the important question is what you're building with your code.

When you know what needs to be built (e.g. a SaaS API product to be built), you know where your skills can be applied today, and in turn that also tells you the value of your work (i.e. how much you can charge).

The reason you failed the interview is not because you are missing anything, but because the business couldn't see where, and how, you could contribute more value than they'd pay you today.

Even someone that doesn't know anything about code can be a worthwhile hire if there is work to be done that they can learn as they go. Documenting code, writing reports, code testing, evaluating/comparing business tech needs/options, ... Maybe they even aggregate the most important, immediately applicable, learnings and share them w/ the team - increasing the total value of the team while learning on the job. Get results.

Never assume the business understands its own business completely. They generally don't. It's all very complex (lots of layers) with everyone trying to defend their own interests, which is why these "pitch yourself, convince us" interviews are even a thing. Be patient, respectful, understand your position in the chain of productivity, and explain it to them in a thoughtful way in the interview.

ypedroo profile image
Ynoa Pedro Author

Wow thank you for this orientation appreciate

sebvercammen profile image
Sébastien Vercammen

I'm glad it helps.

Something I forgot to add: Don't lose your passion for learning.

That drive to learn how things work, build new things or old things in new ways, write articles about what you learned, ... Those are all you and they're great attributes to have and cultivate.

Grow those for yourself if it's who you are, but never forget a business is a business - they're looking for ROI, not for passion.

So protect yours.

When a business finds passion, it tends to squeeze it for everything it has, burning people out without ever paying them more for the extra wealth they created for the business' owner.

Learn things, understand them, manage yourself. And remember to have fun.

It may also be that you need different places/people for each of those things.