Today I had a full-day job interview for a junior data scientist position.

First I met the team which was only like half of everyone because apparently everyone was gone on Fridays. However the few there were really nice.

First task is to do some basic data analysis stuff even though I already spent a week on the coding challenge and sent them all my code/tasks. I log into my machine and create a new virtual environment but can't for the life of me figure out how to use the command line in windows to install packages. Turns out there is some problem with their proxy and they have to log me in on that. Then I am struggling on the keyboard because it's for a language different that my mother tongue and it takes me 3x as long to so the most simple things. All my shortcuts are out the window. Haven't a hard time typing parentheses and brackets. Start freaking out and have a panic attack mid task. I'm sweating bullets. I didn't even make it to the simple visualization tasks much less the models at the end. Time gets called and we all go to lunch and I'm freaking out on the inside the entire time. Angry at myself because I know I am better and just couldn't think.

After lunch I present my code and results from a coding challenge I did weeks prior. People from other teams get invited and I end up getting grilled for 2 hours by 15 people. Questions are flying in from all sides. They ask me almost everything I know about machine learning and some more. Under stress I forgot the name of the optimizer I used and couldn't answer some easy stuff because my mind was racing.

Right now I am on the train home and my body physically hurts. I am disappointed with myself and wish I could have shown up better. Never really froze up like this before.

  • 4
    Part of those interviews is to see how you cope under pressure. Chances are, they will have kept pushing you because they need to know that you won't just totally fold when it gets difficult.

    I also suspect that they will take the language thing into account.

    At this point, if you haven't had feedback yet, you will be thinking the worst - my advice is to forget it.

    It's done.

    You either did it, or didn't, so don't panic. It won't do any good now anyway.

    To be able to get through a stressful interview at all is not a small thing to do, and a lot of people would have just turned into useless gibbering wrecks in the corner of the room when faced with the same situation!

    It's a junior position, so they won't expect you to be an encyclopaedia, they will just want to know you can cope, which it sounds like you did....
  • 0
    @oudalally I appreciate the encouragement.
  • 0
    Well, I think being drilled by 15 people simultaneously for 2h is excessive.
  • 1
    There are literally 800 000 data analyst jobs out there so feeling even a slight bit nervous is not worth it dude! After few interviews you will feel completely normal. Keep up good work!
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