Success is subjective. It can be measured as a “good” result, but ultimately, you define your own success. Whether it is obtaining monetary wealth, being rich in health, building meaningful relationships, innovating groundbreaking technology or all the above. To define success, you must identify your life goals. Some examples of life goals include things like work/life balance or financial freedom. It is also important to identify your career goals. Some examples of career goals include having the opportunity to learn new skills or working in a particular industry sector. Your definition of success is unlike anyone else’s.
There are times when you find yourself at a crossroads during your career. You can travel the same path you or choose to re-navigate and explore other opportunities. The direction to success is uncertain, but you can use your knowledge, experience, and goals to guide you throughout your journey. The decision to change roles or organizations should not be taken lightly.
I made the decision to explore new career opportunities a few months ago. After submitting hundreds of applications, I landed interviews with six different organizations for six different roles. I am going to provide some key takeaways based on my experience throughout the interview process. Before I dive into the interview processes, I would like to highlight the importance of researching into the organizations that are interviewing you. You made it this far. It is imperative to do your due diligence on potential employers and consider what you have to offer them, but most importantly what they have to offer you so that you can become successful.
I recommend researching into an organization’s products, structure, and culture. A company website can provide information about its history and leadership. Social networks, including LinkedIn and Twitter, can provide insight into a company’s culture and the technology stacks being used. Some companies will provide you with additional information about the company or the interview process prior to an interview, which is nice. Any unanswered questions that you may have should be prepared for the interview.
Interview preparation may or may not be required. However, it is important to go into an interview with confidence and a positive attitude. Most importantly, be honest. There are a few general questions that you can anticipate. First and foremost, be prepared to introduce yourself and walk through your employment history. Talk about your accomplishments, developed skills, or the solutions that you used. You should also anticipate discussing the company, the position, and your career goals. You will also most likely be asked why you would like to work for the company or what interested you in the position.
After the initial discussion, you will be asked about your technical skills. It is perfectly fine if you are unsure of an answer. Do your best to provide a response based on your knowledge and experience. I was asked about a particular tool during an interview. I described the tool’s purpose and a command. I was also very candid about not being proficient with the tool. However, I did communicate my desire to continue to learn, as it is one of my career goals.
One key takeaway is that the drive and hunger to learn cannot be taught, as technical skills can be. I highly recommend publicly showcasing your experience and knowledge, as I was told by an interviewer that they read through my tweets and my blog. You should also discuss any new concepts or skills you are currently learning during your interview. For example, I mentioned that I began learning Python during an interview and got a positive response from the interviewer.
The questions being asked and the responses being provided by the organization should also be carefully considered before accepting a job offer. One interview was agonizing for me. I was being asked broad questions and I was being provided with vague answers. One of the interviewers asked if “I really found the identity of DarkSim905.” As a potential job candidate, I felt ridiculed and disrespected. I could not fathom how I would feel as an employee. Another key takeaway is to know your worth and be prepared to respectfully decline offers if you feel uncomfortable on an interview.
Ultimately, your decision to accept a job offer should be contingent on your goals and priorities. I took the following factors into consideration:
· Company vision
· Company culture
· Job tasks and responsibilities
· Opportunities for development and growth
· Positive feedback from current employees
Overall, the interview process was positive for most of the organizations. Job interviews are a two-way street. Your goals must be identified and understood by both parties before an informed decision can be made. There are organizations that are willing to provide you with an opportunity if you can show them you are teachable and willing to learn. Know your worth, communicate the value you can bring to the organization, and ask organizations what value they can provide to you.
If you enjoyed this blog, please buy me a coffee. https://www.buymeacoffee.com/cassiecage