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For those of you who are having interviews ... remember this

Comments
  • 110
    We have a fucking badass here :)
  • 30
    @gitpull Indeed.
  • 75
    Gilfoyle? Is that you?
  • 51
    It isn't arrogant if the candidate is highly experienced. I always ask questions like that, and I poke holes in their problems. Dress code, reliance on proprietary software, single-client VPNs, etc.

    They're interviewing me, but they need to convince me too.
  • 13
    I asked what can be expected of me once I start but I wouldn't ask this. It's arrogant unless you have a CV to back up your confidence, which I don't. Obviously if you're Bill Gates you can ask this.
    I proved my worth by listing about ten issues with their site (CSS and js not minified, images were huge pngs being down scaled etc).
  • 12
    This is a great tip. Not only does it show that you're confident in your abilities, it will give your insight into what the company is like. I love getting questions like this when I interview a candidate, and I always do my best to answer them honestly
  • 19
    My post was not exactly about that specific question, yeah you can asked it if you have a CV that backs you up and you're confident in your skills.

    What I wanted to convey through this post was for us devs to remember that an interview is a two-way street, you need to ask all the questions that will help figure out if the company is a fit for you and that you'll be respected and not be a slave for that company.

    And as @bahua said, they're interviewing me, but they need to convince me too.
  • 38
    @AlexDeLarge

    It's not arrogant.

    You are trading labor and knowledge for money and career progress, it's a trade between equals. They should test your skills and knowledge, and you should test their compensation package.

    "What opportunities do you offer for employees to improve themselves?"

    "How would you describe the distribution of interns/junior/medior/seniors in the teams?"

    "How does the team communicate internally and with the rest of the company?"

    "What percentage of their time do people spend behind their desk? How many meetings are there per month?"

    "Can I work in my underpants?"

    "Do you require time tracking, do you use scrum/agile points?"

    "Lunch. Do you pay, or do I? What about travel expenses? Pension fund?"

    Some questions feel weird to ask, IF you don't see yourself as equal to the employer.

    When an employer gives a dismissive answer, tell them it isn't a deal breaker, you just like everything to be very clear and explicit.
  • 18
    @bittersweet I agree. I don't see this as arrogant.

    I've turned down companies before because I found I didn't want to work there after the interviews.

    Often I ask just as many questions as the interviewer.
  • 10
    @Root

    It's important to know each other's quirks, demands and wishes up front. It's all a very complicated weighted checklist, and not a single company will score perfect, but starting a contract with the right expectations is absolutely vital.
  • 8
    @bittersweet absolutely.

    The ability to read people well is absolutely the most important skill in finding a good job. Even interviewing well comes second.
  • 6
    Tips on what one should ask when being interviewed for an internship?
  • 4
    It's both arrogant and not arrogant depending on how you ask and wether the job is above your level.

    If it's a job you can do easily, bring things to the company, be effective, then sure why should you work there.

    If it's going to be a stretch for you, a learning period, then that's the reason you're working there.

    But you could rephrase the question if necessary.

    "What benefits, aside from the standard remuneration that is expected of an employee employer relationship, are unique to your specific company?"
  • 17
    @dxdy

    Again, financial information is important, even if you don't expect a salary. Might give one company a ++ over another.

    And questions around "what is expected of me".

    Ask if they can give an example of a currently relevant task they would expect you to be able to pick up. Does the difficulty make you feel nervous? confident?

    Ask: "If I get stuck on this feature, how would you expect me to move forward?" -- Pay attention to whether they say: "Google it", "Pair programming", "Ask on Slack", or "You can always reach Bob, the senior developer". None of those answers are wrong, but it gives you a feel for the level of team support you'll be receiving. Ask: "Who is Bob?", go shake his hand, try to gauge whether he actually likes to be a mentor.

    If they ask whether you want a drink, say yes. Ask to visit the toilet before you leave.

    The quality of coffee and the coarseness of toilet paper basically tells you everything you need to know about how they treat their interns.
  • 0
    📌
  • 1
    This is entirely legit in my view.

    In most countries with software development companies, it has to be accepted that it is really hard to hire ”good” developers. It is easier to hire shit developers and hope your seniors can mentor them along.

    This shortage of capable talent puts us in a buyers market. It's business, not personal. It isn't arrogant to know you have the upper hand in business and use it to secure your own gain. Not arrogant at all.

    But with this known on both sides, there must be an enticement for developers to work for you over someone else.

    In most cases, ping-pong and red bull are not enough for a good developer. You need to prove to them that you have interesting and challenging problems to solve, good culture and much more.

    Of course, this only applies if you truly believe you are talented and could get a job elsewhere. If you are junior, lack confidence or have a lot of imposter syndrome then your mileage may vary.
  • 8
    I had an interview 2 months ago and this is what happened..

    Interviewer: "Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?"

    Me: *Starts to laugh. No seriously, I was laughing..

    Interviewer: This is a serious question. Why are you laughing?

    Me: Well, first of I'm not God to know where I will be in the next 5 years. And I know you don't care who I marry, what house I buy, or anything not relating to this in the next 5 years. But here's what I know...if I do get this position, in the next 5 years, I'd acquire enough skills here to be able to contribute more to the company in my areas of expertise and also pass on those skills for future employees to also succeed in what they do to be able to help the company grow..

    * Interviewer looks at other interviewers in the room then nods..

    I got the job offer in the next 2 days.

    You have to let these guys know they can't intimidate you. 😁
  • 2
    @suprano nice! You nailed it.
  • 0
    @featurenotbug eeey 👏 love the series
  • 2
    I thought everyone asked these kinda questions.
    I always ask about why should or shouldn't I join your team? Or what kinda problems that you think your team/company is facing? How are you trying to fix that?

    No one ever told me that these questions are arrogant. They were more than eager to answer these.

    Of course I ask them at the end of the interview, so that they know my worth.
  • 1
    It's undoubtedly arrogant. Two things most developers have to some degree are ego and unseasoned social skills. I don't hire either. You ask this question in this manner, I'm going to end the interview at my earliest convenience and talk to someone who knows what respect is.

    There are better, less douchey ways of asking basically the same thing.

    What's a typical work day like here?
    Why do you enjoy working here?
    How do you see my skill set fitting in here?
    Are there opportunities for learning and mentoring?

    Etc.
  • 2
    @datawraith

    It goes the other way too. If it's disrespectful for a candidate to ask that question, then the same is true for an interviewer.
  • 1
    @bahua No. It's not. As an applicant, you're selling yourself to the company. It is perfectly fine for them to ask, "So, why should we hire you?" The company doesn't audition for you in quite the same way as you do for it.
  • 3
    @datawraith

    I disagree. The interview is to determine a fit, and it goes both ways. Starting the conversation with an inherent imbalance between employer and employee is a red flag, signalling a culture of subordination. You have to avoid the terribly flawed idea that the candidate needs the job more than the company needs the position staffed. Otherwise you're creating a fear-based dynamic, which is a lose-lose.
  • 1
    @bahua That's the reality. People do need jobs more than companies need people. There are too many people in the world, period. If you're good at what you do and you haven't shot yourself in the foot along the way via bad behavior etc then you should have nothing to worry about. There is no fear. If it doesn't work out for you one place just go to another place.

    If you don't think you're subordinate to the company paying you, there is some cognitive dissonance there. The key is knowing yourself and when you do, there is no need to be arrogant.
  • 1
    @datawraith

    I argued that it is not arrogant at all for a candidate to ask why he or she should choose to work at a given place. It isn't. It's a fallacy that hurts the discourse and honesty in hiring to assume that a candidate is begging for scraps. Sometimes, an employer is not good enough for a candidate. There is nothing wrong with that, but it's important to be able to speak frankly and plainly about it.

    If a hiring manager or interviewer is too sensitive to weather that kind of criticism, then he or she needs to find a new career, and his or her employer would benefit greatly from the separation.

    It's business. Emotion has no place there.
  • 1
    @bahua If it's just business and emotion has no place there, all the assholes in the world would stay employed. I guess I'm biased as I work somewhere where respect goes both ways and you need more than your raw skills to get hired. We've never had a need to be rude with one another. In fact, we just let a person go for being impossible to work with. Skills are on point, but doesn't know how to interact with people and be part of a team without being an arrogant jerk.
  • 2
    @datawraith

    Again, arrogant is your word. Stating facts is not arrogant, nor am I advocating that anyone be willfully unpleasant. That's actually the exact behavior that I thought you were advocating, as a matter of fact.
  • 3
    @datawraith @bahua

    Arrogant:

    "exaggerating or disposed to exaggerate one's own worth or importance often by an overbearing manner"

    This implies the company's worth is more than the person. IMO this attitude is why the world is in the mucked state it is. People aren't just there to serve companies, but that's exactly how most modern corps think of and treat people. This is especially bad in our industry.

    So yes, if you only value me as a thing to serve your needs and cannot be bothered to realize people have just as important needs, then please, end the interview immediately. That's not a company or a person I want to work for.
  • 0
    I even ask this question to recruiters emails .. why lose everyone’s time?
  • 1
    I think that is only going to work if the company you are applying for a job in, isn't staffed by idiots who would rather hire another idiot who has no experience, and no ability, but does happen to have a friend who works in the HR department..

    Sadly my country is full of such companies these days. :-(
  • 1
    @suprano totally saving that answer for myself! (Not the laughing part 😁)
  • 0
    @binarydigit haha, right? 😁
  • 6
    You can soften the question to ask the same thing. "Why would you recommend working here" or even "Tell me what you love about this company".

    Even if you already gathered some things from the interview you should always ask questions to appear interested. If something was mentioned you could say "Can you tell me more about these group lunches" or "Whats a good story from the last office party you spoke about".

    I've found doing these things set you apart and can even allow you to cover for other small mistakes or shortcomings.
  • 1
    I said this to a fumb duck I interviewer who thought I could do Java because I have “JavaScript” in my resume: “You’re an idiot”
  • 0
    Like a boss... Well that was good though
  • 2
    @Root now that I have gained some experience in interviews.
    I ask them as many questions as I possibly can, but by thinking them very thoroughly.
    Some of them did talk about the aspects I did not like like buzzwords, calling people who are potential introverts "Fachidioten" (People who are workaholic, the best in their job, but do not tend to be socially interactive
    - a possible guy as an example would be Linus Torvalds), recruiters who do not see you as a person - probably due to them being used to be dicks, recruiters who think that they are doing everything in their life the right way, recruiters who want to skip the money topic (fuck yourself, tell me how much you regularly pay. I am not going to work for free, asshole), recruiters who want you to be best in specific languages (which is optimal, but not when you apply for an apprenticeship where they have to teach you all of it. Tl;dr they expect you to be the best developer while you are still a student with no real job experience - a slave working under the same stress levels as devs who have been working there for 10 years, the same programming experience as these devs and way less pay) - modern job slavery, etc.
    When I find this kind of behaviour, I immediately change the topic so that I can leave. Fuck them. It is not just the recruiters, but also CTOs. Real chiefs.
  • 0
    Sorry for letting this thread get back to live btw.
  • 1
    I replied to a 10 year old thread once.

    (I was looking for something, and found it, so reported back where it was!)
  • 2
    > tell me how much you regularly pay.

    That one always rather annoyed me when I was in a job, if I was applying for another job, I'd only take one if it paid more.

    So naturally the first question I'd ask via email is, how much does it pay.

    Which they would often either not answer, or say they would tell me in the interview..

    What I'm going to waste my time with someone who is unwilling to answer my first question, I'd hate to think how many other questions they wouldn't answer too !

    Actually, I remember one place, they said they would tell me by 5pm that day if I got the job or not.

    They couldn't even manage that and I was sitting in their lounge area next to reception, so not hard to get hold of..

    I assumed I didn't get it !

    I did email, phone, no one willing to give me an answer.

    The only thing I didn't do was wait outside to catch them leaving work and ask them in person !

    So next time...
  • 2
    @-ANGRY-CLIENT- Yes. All of that.
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