Things I’ve learned about technical interviews
Within this past month, I have had several technical interviews with different companies. My very first one, I was so nervous that I felt that I forgot how to code! I knew I bombed it! But the more I went on these interviews and the more I practiced in my spare time they become a bit less scary. Coming from a bootcamp, you don’t get a chance to learn about algorithms and data structures(aka computer Science stuff), so most of that I had to learn on my own. So inn this article, I want to share a few tips that have helped me along my journey so far.
This probably seems like a no brainer but be confident in what you do know! Having someone watching you code can feel super intimidating, and I will be the first to admit that. But 9 times out of 10 you know more than you realize. Many interviews I was surprised that I was able to solve a challenge once I became confident in my training and relying on what I know.
I can’t stress this enough! When you are solving a problem but are not clear on what is being asking of you….ASK! “Closed mouths don’t get fed”. You will find that the person who is interviewing is hoping you will ask them about the problem. This shows that you are actually thinking and processing the problem and considering edge cases that may come up before you dive in. Ask as many as you need and ask often!
Talk out loud
Talk to the rubber duck or the shaggy dog or whatever animal you’d like. The point is to talk through your thought process as you are coding. This gives the interviewer a glimpse in what you are trying in attempts to solve the algorithm. And if you have a nice interviewer they will help guide you if the path your are taking is the best path or not. They may even give you a “Well what about if we did this…..” to guide your solution.
Pseudo Code then Real Code
Now this one may be personal preference, but I found that if I code write the psuedo code of how I would like to solve the problem FIRST, it made it easier to actually write the code that code accomplish the solution I was after.
Feedback(Ask for it)
When the interview comes to an end, wether you felt you did good, bad, or straight up horrible be sure to ask for feedback. This will do two things: It will help you see where you need to improve AND it will impress the interviewer. I gather that a lot of people who interview for positions don’t ask this question. I think it shows that you value others input and you desire to be a better coder by learning from others. It also will help you see blindspots in your weaker areas and maybe learn a new way to approach a problem that you may have never considered. Learn from these experiences and take what you can from them.
Need I say more. 🤷🏿♀️ lol But I won’t harp on this because we all know the mantra that “Practice makes perfect”.The more you solve challenges, build projects, learn about data structures, and algorithms the more prepared you will be for the next interview.
Until next time…Happy Coding Ya’ll. 😜