5 Common mistakes to avoid in a technical interview
“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing”
The only reason that motivated me to write this article is that I see a lot of juniors having enough talent and knowledge to crack any interview fail to convert into a big one because of the tiny mistakes they do in the interview. Having interviewed more than 200 candidates, based on their experience, sharing a few common mistakes one can avoid doing in a coding or technical interview.
1. “Understand the problem statement”
It is inevitable that you propose a wrong solution if you don’t understand the problem statement clearly and being in a time-constraint interview, it will leave you on the backfoot. So at the beginning itself, ask as many questions as you want to clearly understand the problem statement.
2. “Do not be in a hurry”
There may be times when you already know the answer to the problem asked, in that case, do not jump into the most optimized solution at the beginning itself because it will leave the impression that you already know the answer. Be a little smart here, try suggesting the brute force approach first, and then gradually move to the optimized solution. It will build your problem solver image in the minds of the interviewer.
3. “Effective dry run”
Once you finish writing the code to the problem asked, try writing a few corner test cases on your own and on their basis, apply various required checks in the code before giving a dry run to the interviewer. This will help you identify loopholes in your code thus saving you from falling into the dark side.
4. “Be humble”
There is a very thin line between confidence and over-confidence and this makes a bigger difference in an interview, be it technical or non-technical. I have seen freshers having great problem-solving skills, strong technical knowledge but lack behavioral aspect. This will leave an interviewer in the dilemma of whether the candidate will be able to make up with the team. Try to be humble and genuine and don’t let the chance slip away because of this mistake.
They say hard work pays off and I have felt it. Do not let one failure take away your next success. Keep practicing, make smaller goals, and try to achieve them and you will find yourself on the other side of the table.