T-SQL Tuesday #93 – Interviewing Patterns & Anti-Patterns

By Jeff on August 8, 2017

Interview.

Just the mere mention of the word (unless followed by ‘with the Vampire’) conjures up anxiety. Not because I have gone through any particularly painful interviews, mind you, but for the most part they tend to just be an uncomfortable me talking with several people as we step through checklists.

The best ones though are panel interviews intended to also measure your fit within the team dynamic.

Go Team Go!

My experience with these has always gone in one of a few ways.

First, a panel of your future co-workers, asking questions which actually relate to your future role and maybe a couple of personality questions sprinkled in. This is pretty good. I enjoy these. If you do these, congratulations, you are doing it right.

The second is when the candidate interviews with far too many people to be relevant or those just asking ‘interview’ questions like ‘if you were a planet, which emotion would your moon be?’ This one is as annoying as it is common.

The last one I experienced is the “Double-Stuffed Conference Room.” This is when you place multiple applicants on one side of a conference room table, a panel of interviewers on the other side, and go through ‘interview’ questions like you are in the lightning round of a cancelled TV game show. It only happened to me once ┬ávery early in my career for a help desk/call center role. They had three applicants, five interviewers, and we all got to know each other one afternoon over questions like ‘What is your favorite food?’ and ‘If you could be any animal, what would you be?’

I suppose that afternoon wasn’t an entire waste as I got the job. I ended up declining the offer though as I just couldn’t imagine working with Jared the squirrel-man who preferred burgers to pizza.

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