Saturday, December 01, 2012
Interviewing for a position where I am an interviewer...
It goes without saying that I am savagely focused on technology over just soft skills alone as I have ran across more than a few buzzword puppets in my travels. But of course, being a student of the human aspects of technology, I do find myself on occasion paying attention to a few areas of concern. Below are four areas that are almost guaranteed to influence my decision.
Inability to use free time. I don’t want to see a candidate who has no additional interests or personality beyond what’s required to get a job in their industry. You need to show you’re a human being, not a robot. I love to see candidates with hobbies or even those who have taken on a second job—it shows you’re able to make good use of your free time to expand your skills and interests and this is a quality that’s likely to spill over into your professional life.
Unpreparedness. If you show up at the interview without having a working knowledge of the company, what its mission is, what type of work it does, who its clients are, etc., do not think it won’t show! I will be able to tell from the get-go if you haven’t done your homework and fully researched the company. Come armed with a few additional questions to ask at the end of the interview to show you’re already engaged in the company’s mission. This line of thinking doesn't just apply if you are interviewing for a position, but equally apply when you are a vendor attempting to sell a product. On more than a few occasions, I have gotten annoyed with Oracle sales teams for showing up at my past employer without having a clue as to what our business is yet waxing poetically how you can help us grow revenue.
Job hopping. If you’ve had tons of different positions in the last two years, or tend to leave a company after less than six months, this could signal you’re flaky, difficult to work with, or at the very least, unsure of what it is you really want to do. That doesn’t mean you need to lie on your resume – simply be honest with the hiring manager about what exactly has caused you to switch companies so many times. There are times where you need to escape working for ass-clowns, but this shouldn't be repeatable.
Shady online presence. While I do not adhere to the practice of checking a candidates Facebook page under the belief that this is wrong, I will look at their online presence in general. I want to understand how truly engaged you are in your industry. You will make a big impression if you have a twitter account and/or a blog.
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