A Little Interviewing Advice

Make your next interview a two way interview.

I know there was a great uproar over the interview piece at the beginning of this week and I received lots of opinions on various parts of the article, good and bad to go over. But one comment came yesterday that was very interesting to me. Paraphrasing because I cannot seem to find the email in the deluge that is my desktop, it was questions the line “And you want them to think you’re one of them”

I read that a few times before I received the comment, not thinking much of it. After all, when you are interviewing, you want to get along with people and have them like you and hopefully hire you. When I got this comment, however, it struck me what the advice was and what I read were two different things.

You see I think teamwork is very important, much more important than the technical skills. Not that skills aren’t important, they’re just behind you fitting into a team environment. So where’s the problem with that line? You see it?


When I interview you, or when I interview a company, I am searching and trying to find out if I AM one of them. I want to fit in, but it has to be something that happens naturally. I try to present an honest face and I try to relax candidates to get an honest sense of how they really are. I want to know if they really fit in, or if I do. Not if I can act the part and fool someone into thinking that I’m some other candidate.

I know it’s hard. You apply for a job, maybe need one, and you want desperately to get hired. And you want to make the impression needed to get hired. And if you are really desperate, then perhaps there’s some justification. But most of the time that’s not the case. I see many DBAs and developers wanting a new job, more money, etc. and they are interviewing while they already have a job somewhere else. There’s nothing wrong with that, but if you are looking to move, do it the right way.

Be honest and give an honest impression of yourself. And at the same time interview the company and try to ensure they are giving you an honest impression of what it will be like working there.

After all, companies lie in interviews almost as much as candidates.

About way0utwest

Editor, SQLServerCentral
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2 Responses to A Little Interviewing Advice

  1. Scott Gleason says:

    I’m not sure I can 100% agree with the statement “companies lie in interviews almost as much as candidates”.

    HOWEVER: Recruiters lying to candidates, information lost in translation, lack of technical understanding, and candidates not reading the job description? Now that I can agree with.
    I always start an interview by asking the candidate what information they have received about the open position so that both of us don’t waste time.

    Never lie during an interview, be honest. If the person you’re interviewing with is anything like me, you’re finished if they even think your lying. Just because you don’t know something, does not mean I won’t hire you, unless it’s a WHOLE lot that you don’t know.

    🙂 SQL Scott Gleason


    • way0utwest says:

      There’s no black and white here. I don’t completely agree with Sean either, but I do see companies that mislead candidates about what the job is. Sometimes it’s intentional, sometimes it’s because they don’t really have a good idea themselves of what they will need.


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