10 Technical Interview Tips

April 17th, 2017

I’ve compiled a list of tried and true tips for anybody who is preparing for a technical interview. These tender nuggets of wisdom are guaranteed to make your interviewer cry tears of joy.

1. Buy a whiteboard for your house. Spend an hour every weekend going through some algorithms problems on the whiteboard.

2. Apply for jobs constantly, even if you are already employed. Applying for just 1 job a day is enough to keep your interviewing skills sharp.

3. Sever any social ties with people from your current company. Soon enough, you’ll be working somewhere much cooler anyways, so you can safely ignore your current coworkers. Besides, are you really going to let your “buddy” Jerry from HR get in the way of your future job and its Cryogenic Nap Pods, Levitating Desks, and Intravenous Soylent?

4. Buy another whiteboard (for your bathroom). You can never have too many whiteboards.

5. Forget “Vim vs Emacs” and “Atom vs Sublime”. In fact, just stop using a text editor entirely. From now on, all coding you do for your day job will be done on a whiteboard. Get an intern (or anyone else desperate enough to do unpaid labor) to transcribe your whiteboard code onto a computer. Who gives a shit, your current employer is meaningless to you now.

6. Now is the time to really test how “unlimited” your current employer’s “unlimited vacation policy” really is. Ramp up your job applications tenfold — try to do an onsite every day.

7. Acquire more whiteboards. You’re gonna want at least 15 of these suckers scattered throughout your living space and attached to your spouse/children. It is very important that you are within arm’s reach of a whiteboard at all times.

8. Make sure to appear clean and professional for all of your interviews. A suit would be overkill, but a nice button-up and some quality slacks or jeans will do fine.

9. Your brain should be literally filled to capacity with useless trivia about triple double green blue hash trees, inverse covariant curried stacks, and concurrent inverted graph constraints. Any information not related to technical interviews needs to be expunged immediately. You don’t need to remember your childhood, your mother’s name, or your favorite foods. All you need is the warm embrace of your Data Structures and Algorithms. Let your past life slip away from you. Give yourself up to the dark forces of the whiteboard gods. Fret not, the pain will be over soon.

10. The last step is to get out there and crush it! Don’t worry about messing up any one interview, just be yourself and keep on working hard. I believe in you!

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