Red Pill ExampleCorporateLand: How to Kill it in Your Job Interview (self.TheRedPill)

submitted by Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev

CorporateLand: How to Kill it in Your Job Interview

TL;DR: A guy who interviews candidates tells you what he looks for in job interviews, and how not to fuck yours up. Based on the reaction to my last two "CorporateLand" threads, I thought this might be useful for RPMen navigating the interview process.

Related posts in the "CorporateLand" series you may find of interest:

CorporateLand: How to Handle Salary Negotiations.

CorporateLand: A Rat Race Survival Guide For New Rats


So here is my view from the “hire” side of the desk. What I will tell you will have general application, but I work in commodities, so for tech (as an example) somethings will be different, I’m sure. This, like all my articles and posts, is the product of my own, meandering experience and may be worth what you paid for it (free on the internet).

People get fucking weird in job interviews. And I mean interviewers. They ask weird ass fucking questions, posit bizarre scenarios and attach massive over-emphasis to things that they never would in the real world. I've never understood why. Probably I should have taken more psych classes.

What to do Before:

Tailor Your Resume to the Company Don’t overdo it, but tweak it here and there. That said, some people cannot cope with a resume that is not chronological. I have no idea why, but that’s the case.

Research the company. And do more than just go to our homepage. Listen to the last few earnings calls, and read the last few 10-Qs. I mean, don’t bother if you don’t really give a shit about the gig, but nobody does this, so when someone says, “I listened to the last earnings call, and I was impressed/blown away/scared shitless by…”

Research the Interviewer. Many folks are easily accessible online, such as at LinkedIn. That’s fair game. Don’t make it awkward by discussing what a big fan you are of their daughter’s Jr. High soccer team.

Best Days. If you have any input into the weekday chosen for your interview AVOID MONDAYS & FRIDAYS. Mondays everyone is busy as fuck. I have three standing meetings on Mondays. The last gawddam thing I want to do is interview someone. The problem is that HR sits around with their thumbs up their asses all day, every day, so they don’t think about that shit. I’m perfectly fine with Fridays, personally. I like to avoid afternoons, because I come into the office for interviews, and I hate the commute. Other people have checked out completely, so best to avoid. If you can pick a time, shoot for 10am or 2pm. We do all-day interviews, so no need to avoid lunches, because we’re either bringing it in, or taking you to lunch.

Clean up your social media. I don’t give a shit how you spend your free time, what your political views are (mostly; if you’re a freakazoid who can’t shut up about politics, I’m not going to like being around you), or that you pop bottles and get high on the weekend. I’m not going to go looking. You know who is? HR. And they’re petty little fucks.

What to do During:

Show up 15 minutes before, and be prepared.

Be polite to the receptionist. I am friendly with ours, and if you’re a dick to her, she’ll tell me.

Stay calm. Just like with women, think "Abundance Mentality". Maybe you get the gig, maybe you don't; take your best shot at it and it comes out how it comes out. Learn from the experience. I got out of school during a recession and I went on a shit ton of interviews. It got to the point where I was more relaxed and better prepared than basically every interviewer I met with.

It’s ok if you bring a leather portfolio. Don’t bring a briefcase. You haven’t earned it yet. Have at least 3 - 5 extra copies of your resume with you, as well as a few copies of your references sheet. I doubt anyone will ask, but if they do, you look smooth. Also, sometimes I get sent in to interview people I would not otherwise, and I might not have been given your stats.

Oh, and don’t have a stupid email address. “Huggy-Pooh(at)numbnuts.com” is just not a percentage move. And this seems obvious, but I’ve seen some weird ones. Again, I don’t judge, but HR does.

When we meet, shake my hand. Your handshake should be firm—but please, Jesus, God, DO NOT be one of those guys who feels like he has to try and crush my hand—and dry. It’s ok if you have to surreptitiously wipe your hand on your trousers first. I prefer that to a clammy handshake. Three pumps, no more, and then a clean release.

While this has mostly gone away, there used to be rules for shaking a lady’s hand, which I still observe.1 I had one woman call me on this in an interview, and I explained my rationale, and she was fine with it. She was a lady lawyer, and I think her icy, black heart actually warmed up, slightly. Still frozen of course, but moved off of zero, Kelvin.

It’s totally ok that you wore a suit. I will be in jeans and a polo, and loafers without socks. On a Monday.2 If you express discomfort about it, I will tell you it’s ok to take your suitcoat off, if you want. It’s not a trap; I don’t really give a shit whether you do or not. I’m not inherently a mean guy and a lot of folks are nervous in interviews and I prefer them calm. I also like to put people at ease, so they think “Hey, this guy’s cool! I can tell him anything!” and then either (a) show me they are cool, too (win!) or (b) fuck up by telling me shit they shouldn’t, so I can ding them and not waste my time or theirs.

Try and maintain good eye contact. Not the no-blinking, “yes, I’m a total coke fiend kind” but the normal, good kind. While I do not overtly look for your body language, it will register, subconsciously.

Only accept my offer of water or coffee or whatever if you can drink it without shaking like you have cerebral palsy. Unless you actually have cerebral palsy. Then it’s ok. If you have to use the can, that’s ok, too, but try to do that beforehand. If you’re in an all-day interview, the best time is either at lunch or in between interview sessions. Unless you have explosive diarrhea, in which case I will totally understand, and I will be your blocking back on the way to the restroom, if only so I will be in front of you, and not behind.

We are going to start by talking about what I want to talk about, which is you. I always lead with “Tell me about yourself” because people have no filters these days and they will say stuff they shouldn’t.

Some other tips:

Be honest. If you lie, I will figure it out, and it will sink you, even if we otherwise would have hired you.

Be Concise. I’m on the right side of the desk to tell long stories, where I seem to lose the point, but then tie it all up with an nice bow on top at the end. You’re not. Don’t be abrupt, but don’t make me lose the plot and have to go hunting for it.

Have examples. If you tell me you’re awesome, I will want you to prove it. If I ask you to walk me through your resume, be able to do it and also tell me some things/skills/anecdotes that aren’t on your resume, but are relevant.

Show me that you are employable. One of the best ways you can do that is to tell me how you would go about doing the job that you are interviewing for. It’s rare that a candidate does this. Usually they’re more passive. When you’re more experienced, you can lay this Awesomeness Grenade down: “Let me tell you how I would do this job. I’ve done [all/part/something similar to] it before. My skills are portable.” If you get it right, it’s a total win. Remember, though, people get massive OCD about shit people say in interviews, so you may need to couch it terms of ascertaining the firm’s risk tolerances/corporate culture.

What to do After:

Unclench. It’s over. You can relax now. Right after you send a “thank you” letter to everyone you interviewed with. You can print them up, but try to change the middle paragraph at least.

Para 1: “Thank you for the opportunity to interview with Spacely Sprockets/Perfect Booty Gentleman’s Club/The Strike and Spare….”

Para 2: “I enjoyed our discussion of the aerodynamic nature of Sophia Vergara’s tits.”

Para 3: “I think I can be an asset to your firm because….”

Questions: Like Guns, They Should Be Treated Like They’re Loaded

Tell me about yourself. As I noted, I will ask this as an opener because people offer up info they wouldn’t otherwise. I also do this if I’m coming into the interview cold, which sometimes happens.

What do you know about our company? I don’t really give a shit what you know about our company. This is the equivalent of a shit-test. It’s not even difficult. Just visit the fucking website. That said, if you haven’t, I know to ding you because you’re either stupid or lazy. Research Earnings Calls, Quarterly Reports and Blog Posts. That will impress the hell out of me.

Why should I hire you? Being able to count off a bunch of reasons with relevant examples is a fucking homerun. [See discussion further down]

Tell me a joke. This is a curveball question, designed to see how you handle weirdness, apparently. I was asked this once, and I happened to come up with one off the top of my head and it worked out fine. I wouldn’t do it to a candidate, but some people will, particularly old guys who think they’re way funnier than they actually are.

Do you want the job? This is another “old guy” question. They’re trying to see if you will betray a lack of commitment by equivocating.

Tell me about how you manage projects/time Maybe you have a better way to do it than I do. I keep a worklist. I used to have a whiteboard and it would go up on that, and later I just kept a file on my PC. Just show me you can manage time and you’re not a fuckhead.

For “Problem Solving” Questions, Think Out Loud. This sort of ‘left field’ question (“Fermi problems”) sometimes comes up. “How many dogs are there in the United States?” Who the fuck knows? And how is it relevant? But rather than thinking for 45 seconds and blurting out an answer, say something like, “Well the population is ~300 million, and let’s assume 3 people per household on average. That’s 100 million households and let’s assume that 40% of those households have dogs. So there’s 40 million dogs. But some dog owners have more than one dog, so let’s say 1.8 dogs per household, which gives a figure of 72 million dogs.” I never ask these types of questions but sometimes you get them.

What is your biggest weakness Come the fuck on! Do people actually ask this question anymore? And whatever you say, don’t say “I’m a perfectionist.” I would ding you for that. If you use that *“honesty” 3 joke that’s been floating around recently, I would at least respect you way more. “Redheads” would also be acceptable, but dangerous. So how to answer? Well, lead with a strength, then discuss a weakness. For example, I’m a deal guy. I am good at building rapport, and very good at getting people to do what I want them to do in negotiations. You know what I suck at? Regulatory bullshit. I would rather watch old people fuck, or stay at home chewing aluminum foil and learning about the metric system. So here’s what I say: “I’m a deal guy. I’m very good at getting to agreements. I need to improve on the regulatory side of things. I view the opportunity here as a chance to do just that because…” I can say this, and make it sound believable, because it’s true. And everywhere I would ever possibly work is going to have a Compliance Department, so all I have to do is be smart enough to spot an issue, and walk it over to them.

Incidentally, the Compliance folks where I work love me b/c I set the land-speed record for reporting reportable shit to them.4 Not because I give a shit, b/c a lot of regs are total bullshit, but b/c I want it to be Not My Problem. Sue me. [In actuality, I’m not really quite that lazy, and I used to know a lot about the FCPA and the UK Bribery Act back when that was important to me. They’re both largely stupid and overreaching, but you know what? Violating them can get you jail time, and I’m allergic to prison, so I comply like a motherfucker and then go back to making deals. And don’t get me started on FATCA, which should be called “FUCKYA” b/c that’s what it’s about.]

Questions You Should Ask Me:

Why should you hire me? If I haven’t asked you this, this is a KILLER question for you to ask me. The more reasons you can count off on your fingers, the better I will like it. Done correctly, this is a show-stopper. I’ve had interviewers (when I was the candidate) tell me they dug this questions. The next one also.

What you will close with: “Based on our discussion today, is there anything about my candidacy that you perceive as a weakness? Is there anything I can provide a fuller discussion of?” Here’s why this question is awesome: either (a) there’s nothing they perceive as a weakness in which case they hear themselves say that, or (b) there is something, and you get to address it, and get your side of the story out. Q: “Tell me why you withdrew for two semesters.” A: “My father died and I had to go run the business for a year, just like Jimmy Stewart in “It’s a Wonderful Life”. The board voted down Mr. Potter, but only if I stayed and ran the Building & Loan.”

Secrets of the Temple.

We will talk about you. If you show you are fucking weird in any attackable way—bad B.O., picked your nose in front of one of us, something else douchey—it will be discussed. So best behavior, and use your indoor voice.

Sometimes, I try to hire women. I really do. And not just the hot ones with big tits. And by “try” I mean on a ‘straight-up’ basis, but they manage to fuck-up the interviews at alarming rates. And when we find one we can make an offer to, they can’t make up their fucking minds. This happens no matter what. In one instance, the woman in question was, literally, the last person in her department at a company that had just filed for bankruptcy. Not only is the writing on the wall, it’s on the floor and the ceiling and it’s in LARGE FUCKING PRINT. She couldn’t’ put it together. /shrug

Another one actually had the temerity to ask us to keep the job open for her for six months. Six months? I understand if you’ve got a couple of other interviews you’re going on, but Six.Fucking.Months? Sorry, princess, we’re not going to hold the job for you while you shop for a better offer. Oh, and you know who is hardest on women candidates? Other women. As I mentioned in a different “CorporateLand” post, I had to drop into HR to pick up a copy of the interview schedule for a candidate and the HR chicks went off on the woman’s choice of shoes for the interview. Like I would possibly give a shit.

I Really Care About Two Things: First, can you do the fucking job, or am I going to have to continuously correct your stupid mistakes? Second, are you going to be a team player, or a whiny bitch? We don’t need to be best buds, but I need to be able to count on your to do your job, and not be a tool.

I go with my gut. My instincts are finely-tuned. I trust them. My armor bears the scars of many an internecine war, and I am a goddamn survivor. I am the fucking honey badger of CorporateLand, only without the gay guy doing a voiceover of my daily activities. Once, I was the only person out of 10 or 12 who dinged a guy. I didn’t like him. I mean he seemed nice enough, but there was something about him. Anyway, for whatever reason, the head of HR wanted to plow the road for him, and she offered me the ‘chance’ to change my vote to a ‘yes’. I declined. Four months later we fired him for trying to punch out two vice presidents at a party. In fairness, we also fired two other guys for being drunk and disorderly, but they didn’t show up at work the next day—still drunk—to continue the fight. That’s got to be a tough one to explain to your wife and in-laws later.

If You Are an SJW, I Will NEVER Fucking Hire You. Not much to worry about in TRP, but I mention it anyways. The last thing I want is to have to listen to some twat drone on about her political views. We have an intern like that, and I can barely stand her. She has this idea that she is entitled to be included in every conversation everyone has and we’re supposed to gape in wonder at her stupid ideas. Ugh. Anyway, this is why I love “Gender Studies” or “Oppression Studies” degrees. They are Big Giant Fucking Signs that say, “Don’t Hire Me! I’m a Fucking Loser!” I don’t care if you are a double Ivy with an M.A. in French from Stanford besides, if I get the slightest whiff that you are an SJW, I will ding you. I will find a way to do it surreptitiously if I have to, but you will never darken my door again. Happily, SJWs have stupid degrees and experience that is off-point, so it’s not difficult. Also, they’re more likely, in my estimation, to sue the firm b/c they got their widdle feewings hurt somehow b/c they overheard guys talking about pussy, or they never got promoted because they suck at their job, etc.

Good luck and the floor is open for questions.

1 Rules for Shaking a Female Interviewer’s Hand. This is an ‘old school’ rule, and most modern businesswomen aren’t going to mind, however, I always wait for the woman to extend her hand. Why? Back in the olden days of covered wagons, or at least back before color TV, the thought was that if you offered your hand to a lady to shake, she might not want to shake your hand. That would put her in the uncomfortable position of either an unwanted touch—women were previously thought to be delicate flowers, during both the Victorian and Reagan Eras—or of refusing, and looking like a cunt and/or embarrassing you. So I wait. And when she puts out her hand first, I am also clued in to whether she’s offering the dainty lady-shake (palm parallel to the floor and I gently take her fingers) or the standard ‘man-shake’.

2 My traders once decided that the measure of value one had to the firm was how badly one abuses the dress code, and I won. I also don’t bother to show up at the office. /shrugs

3 Q: “What’s your biggest weakness?” A: “Honesty.” * Q: *“I don’t think of honesty as a weakness.” A: “I don’t give a shit what you think.”

4 Not in a “fuck somebody over for no reason” way, but in a “Keep the firm the fuck out of trouble” way.

[–]thebadmanpuntdbaxter 72 points73 points  (5 children)

I don't think TRP has to worry about be perceived as SJWs but I wouldn't be surprised if some guys here let manosphere views slip out regularly. This might be just as much of a poison for an interview.

[–]ghostbrainalpha 26 points27 points  (2 children)

I test the waters first by mentioning my favorite comedian Bill Burr.

If you get an "I fucking love that guy" then you can start being a little bit more honest with your opinions around that person.

[–]Jojobelle 4 points5 points  (0 children)

haha bill burr the barometer for all men

[–]bexpert 4 points5 points  (0 children)

One of the major points of TRP is that you don't talk about TRP to people who don't get it because they will hate you for it. I don't think most people here are at any risk.

What we're really looking at here is not some alpha guide about how to ace an interview, it's just some douchebag hiring consultant ranting about his weird experiences interviewing young folks.

[–]Senior ContributorNightwingTRP 94 points95 points  (24 children)

This should be stickied. As a guy who used to do this myself for a number of years I can confirm all of this to be spot on. (Particularly the small bit on shaking hands... which I couldn't believe there were some people on TRP a number of months ago talking about needing to squeeze the other guys hand harder as a sign of dominance.... seriously, we talk about those guys afterwards in the office and discuss how fucking autistic it is to squeeze too hard on a handshake.)

The piece is thorough and as an added "behind the scenes" look... myself and my colleagues can always find a reason to disqualify someone in a job hunt simply because we don't like them. Now, don't like them is not always personal, but similar to the "I will get rid of SJWs" point made in this piece, if you give off a vibe that you'd be any kind of risk to my professional reputation - you're gone and I don't care if it's fair or not. I come first. When you're hired, the risk is always to me and my professional rep for getting behind you. Keep that in mind.

[–]Dopebear 19 points20 points  (9 children)

You need to take what's on TRP with a grain of salt (like everywhere, TRP is no magical exception) lots of people here think you should interrupt consistently as if it proves your dominance and such. Just proves you're an asshole.

So yeah, don't squeeze hands during a hand shake, nor be loose. Firm and snug--balance.

[–]foldpak111 7 points8 points  (3 children)

You also need to be aware of who you're dealing with as well. I have a lot of middle eastern buddies who give extremely gentle handshakes. It's a cultural thing.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

I always just do my best to match the other persons handshake. One mans soft grip is another mans vice grip.

Never steered me wrong before except when the guy is obviously trying to squash your hand but theres not much you can do as theyre usually clamping down before you have a chance to ramp it up that high anyway

[–]foldpak111 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Like everyone else commenting on here about handshakes, the vicegrip is a rapport killer. I only do that to people I have absolutely no respect for and I think it subconsciously signals that to the receiver.

[–]Evileddie13 1 point2 points  (3 children)

Dude, there is an 'art to the handshake', it's a way to show strength without argression, dominance. Like, when you choke a bitch when you are fucking her, you don't want to kill her, you want to show her you COULD. With a man, shake his hand without trying to 'kill it.' Just show him you are strong. Mind you, I'm short. I can get away with shit you can't.

[–]648262[🍰] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Why do you do this? What reaction do you get from people when you do it?

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

"hahaha look at this imp trying to be a real man hahahaha"

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Particularly the small bit on shaking hands... which I couldn't believe there were some people on TRP a number of months ago talking about needing to squeeze the other guys hand harder as a sign of dominance.... seriously, we talk about those guys afterwards in the office and discuss how fucking autistic it is to squeeze too hard on a handshake.)

I was stuck working with a guy like this who's grip strength wasn't all that. He was an utterly annoying little shit with marginal engineering skill that thought he had life all figured out. Except that Lifting >>> Tabata, bro.

The worst part is that everyone else involved in this project fell for this bush league act. Perhaps it's because we're mostly engineers and we tend to interpret things in a straightforward manner.

[–]Casanova-Quinn 4 points5 points  (5 children)

squeeze too hard on a handshake

I think the right technique for getting that "solid" handshake is to focus more on stiffening your hand. Adding some squeeze is good though; you don't want robot hands.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 11 points12 points  (3 children)

The trick is nailing the 'thumb linkup'.

If it's botched, I am not above saying "Whoops, I didn't get you good there" and correcting it. It's actually less awkward than a bad handshake.

[–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (1 child)

If its botched, I often grab their forearm with my other hand and readjust, and do the two handed shake.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

That's one method of 're-setting', sure.

[–]CharlieIndiaShitlord 2 points3 points  (0 children)

A second trick on nailing the handshake; lock your wrist. It adds to the perception of firmness.

Source, many compliments on my handshake.

[–]Senior ContributorNightwingTRP 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Just think firm but relaxed. That's how I've always advised everyone to get the simple happy medium.

[–]foldpak111 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The strongman handshake always threw me off as well. Tender aggression, fellas.

[–]Seducibledotcom 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I envy OP. I've wanted a job in commodities for years. But I have no experience and no college degree. Now I'm relegated to starting my own business and not having a job or interviews. I wish I could have an office job where I could wear a fuckin suit everyday.

[–][deleted] 29 points30 points  (16 children)

Very good information here. I interview alot of people, on campus as well as experienced hires. I also got my last job soley because I called the hiring manager about halfway through my process and .....ASKED FOR THE JOB.

Dont sit back and "wait". Tell them you have thought hard about the opportunity and are sure you can immediately add value and that you want it.

[–][deleted] 10 points11 points  (2 children)

This. I was always hesitant to ask or come across to forward. It's like with women. Confidence and keep pressing

[–][deleted] 17 points18 points  (0 children)

"I really want the job and would accept a fair and reasonable offer"

Boom, its either yours or you will know instantly that you are out of the running.

[–]1Snivellious 4 points5 points  (0 children)

And once again, approach anxiety melts away if you're confident that they'd be lucky to have you (and that another company is right around the corner).

[–]RedDeadlift 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Nice addition. That certainly would make you stand out from the pack.

[–]adidas558492 0 points1 point  (1 child)

at what point in the process do you "ask for the job"?

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's not an exact science, but after you have learned about the position and they have met you

[–]TwentyYearsAgo 27 points27 points [recovered]

Why should you hire me?

This question confused me. Did you mean it as a "why should I take the job if you offered it to me"?

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Translation: if it all narrows down to just you and some other candidate, give me a reason to choose you over them.

[–]TwentyYearsAgo 5 points5 points [recovered]

I got that too, I just don't see how you would work that into the part of the interview where you ask questions of the employer.

[–]Senior EndorsedMattyAnon 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You don't just ask questions.

They say "Any questions?" and you say "Yes.. you should hire me because I'm really great at X, Y and Z and I fit well within your company ethos."

Other than that, you're presenting "why you should hire me" all the way through. You're constantly presenting yourself as worthy and hireable. No excuses. Doing what they ask. Etc.

[–]1Snivellious 24 points25 points  (5 children)

This is a small observation, but don't use the honesty joke. It's funny enough to someone who hasn't heard it, but:

What's your biggest weakness?


Why is honesty a weakness?

I don't give... Wait, umm, you're supposed to say "I don't think of honesty as a weakness." Can you say that instead?

[–]FemtoG 25 points26 points  (10 children)

What is your greatest weakness?

If interviewer is a normal guy : My jumpshot
If interviewer is a nerd: Women
If interviewer is a woman: Chocolate / Food
If you are foreign: My accent

If pushed for a real answer: Public speaking

you get the point..

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 13 points14 points  (0 children)

I once answered, "I've three-putted a lot of greens, lately," which got a laugh. I could tell from his office that the guy was a golfer.

[–]1Sergnb 6 points7 points  (1 child)

I have only done one interview in my life and they hired me, so I've never really thought much about it, but... fuck, it never ocurred to me that I could just be a cheeky fun guy with these shit tests like I'm usually am when women do them to me. It makes perfect sense now, but somehow I thought that I was to avoid making any kind of attempt at humour in a job interview.

I have to reevaluate my perception about how to conduct an interview. This thread was gold.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (3 children)

My answer to that question is just "Microsoft Excel". In my experience, it's worked far better than the bullshit "I'm a perfectionist" cliche

[–]spicedncoke 4 points4 points [recovered]

I laughed at that but in my world you'd be DOA if you said that in an interview.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I'll admit, it's not the greatest answer ever. I chose that because it was something objective and relate-able (most people suck with spreadsheets). Do you have any recommendations?

[–]incognitodoritos 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If Excel is a requirement for the job then don't say it. Otherwise talk about how you're going about on improving it.

[–]mrpCamper 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So close to my actual answer for this....

What is your greatest weakness?

Well, if you had asked me that a few years ago I would have said Public Speaking. But it really bothered me that I wasn't good at it. So, I made a point to work on it. Now, if you ask me what my greatest strength is I'm not ready to say public speaking but someday.....

[–][deleted] 24 points25 points  (21 children)

Sounds like good advice.

The big problem people have with interviews is being stupid as fuck too. My dad used to hire people in computing and it was a prestigious firm so he'd get a lot of ivy leaguers and shit. He'd always ask the question: "How do you know of your program works?" And he'd come home telling me the sheer number of frighteningly stupid answers he'd get. "I don't make mistakes." I'm so thorough." You can never know, but I try to be careful."

[–]1Snivellious 16 points17 points  (1 child)

That's one of the best possible questions to ask programmers, just to catch out the morons claiming they don't fuck up. Lots of different good answers (test driven development, rigorous QA, code review, etc), but what really matters is to drop any candidate who thinks they don't need to double check their work.

[–][deleted] 13 points14 points  (0 children)

It probably applies to a lot more than just programmers.

[–]Senior Contributordr_warlock 3 points4 points  (5 children)

When I used to play around with php and web design, I made sure to echo text to the screen to verify every step, especially during loops. If the text wasn't correct or didn't appear at all, I knew exactly where it went wrong. When I thought i got it right, I would comment it out for later use if necessary.

Often times what you write doesn't match your intentions or there's a small typo lost in a wall of code you glanced over. Sometimes I think the computer is just being a bitch nigga.

[–]RedDeadlift 3 points4 points  (11 children)

What would a proper answer here be? Something like the following? "Because I know how to properly validate and test a program. For example, I've used ... and ... methods in previous projects."

[–]1Snivellious 11 points12 points  (5 children)

It's a question that's pretty specific to coding. For me, a good answer would have two parts:

  1. A way to avoid mistakes. "I write my test cases prior to starting to code, and code accordingly."

  2. A way to catch the mistakes you do make. "I test my code from the perspective of a user, then run it through code review to ensure someone else looks for mistakes I could have missed."

Mostly, though, this is a way to identify smug assholes who don't check their work. More people than you would expect say shit like "Of course it's right, I wrote it." At that point, you can basically end the interview because their work will be buggy, incoherent garbage.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 24 points25 points  (4 children)

I test my code from the perspective of a user

Will someone tell Gates to have at least two normals on each of their product teams? The guy who thought it would be awesome to take away the "Start" button in Windows needs to be fucking executed in an incredibly painful way.

And the re-design of Word sucked, too. Users do not want to go hunting for shit. It was the equivalent of going into a blind person's house and moving all of their furniture around.

[–]1Snivellious 4 points5 points  (1 child)

You know who I want to mail to Siberia, third class? The guy who brought back the Start button for Windows 8, but made it take you to their crappy "tile" screen. It's fucking insulting to put back the feature everyone wanted but give it a new function no one wanted.

And yes, the whole "ribbon" system that Word's menu moved to is a crime against design and software.

Too many hipster, 20-something designers, not enough actual users.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

You know who I want to mail to Siberia, third class?

Third class wouldn't be fun, but being sent to Siberia wouldn't necessarily be a punishment. There are some really hot women there. Let's say we marry him off to an Albanian, lesbian midget instead.

Too many hipster, 20-something designers, not enough actual users.

Yep. That's why I want two 'normals' on product teams. As a non-techie user, I want shit to work, and I don't want to have to learn any new shit or go looking for functions that used to be in one place and have been moved to another just so some faggot can yap on about how he 'changed Windows' blah, blah, blah, to some twat in Seattle who has cunt hair down to her knees and isn't going to fuck him, anyway.

[–][deleted] 3 points3 points

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[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thx for the tip. I downloaded one from somewhere, and they they (sort of) fixed it with the upgrade.

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (4 children)

Yeah, any version of "I'd test it out" answers the question. There's no trick.

[–]Senior EndorsedMattyAnon 7 points8 points  (1 child)

Agree with everything said. Further details about the tech field:

That said, some people cannot cope with a resume that is not chronological.

Bullet point your skills at the top. I am not going to spend 5 minutes looking through a job history that bores even you to find what you can do. I've got 20 CV's to look through and I'll bin 90% of the ones where your skills don't match and 100% of the ones where you don't make it extremely easy for me to see what you can do for me.

If you're sent by an agency, take some bullshit. Take as much as you can. Agencies are fucking evil (if you don't think your agency is evil, you don't know them well enough). But sometimes evil is necessary. If you don't want the job, make sure you keep everything civil. Your agency will not send you to another interview if you pissed their client off. If you don't want the job, try to ensure you don't get an offer (eg "Thanks for your time, but this position is not for me"). If you do, agency will pressure you into accepting, and when you don't they'll just be annoyed with you.

Be slightly arrogant. I get complaints about this. From companies that hire me. Total conviction that you can do the job is very appealing (make it based on fact. They'll test you on this). Be happy to jump through all hoops presented to you. Given any hoop, you will die trying to get through it. You will never give up jumping through that hoop. That intellectual hoop is 18 feet off the ground and you can't remember calculus? Keep fucking trying until you drop down dead. Death is the only excuse not to keep trying to jump through any hoop that is presented to you. You will charge them for your tenacity later.

I've done every test asked of me, tried every challenge, answered every fucking dumb question ever asked at interview to the best of my ability. I have never hired anyone who has said "I'm not going to do your stupid test". You don't wanna do my test? No problem, your skills are now "unknown" but your attitude goes down as "unwilling to work". The next guy will nail my test and you know who I will hire.

Do not tolerate incompetence. If they fuck up your interview, aren't all ready, delay you, mess you around, don't offer you a drink and seem confused about why you are there - leave and don't go back (exception: if through agency, don't piss agency off). You do not want to work with incompetents. If you decide to tough it out, try not to get an offer and do not work with them.

Get the email addresses of everyone who interviews you. Take care to spell their names right. Write notes immediately afterwards about who is who and what you think the deal really is.

Also - follow up after the interview with absolutely everything possible to solve their problem (usually be email). Come up with new ideas, new directions, technical solutions... literally pages of ideas about it within 48 hours of my interview. Think they'll take all this and not hire ya? Sure, they might. Accept it. Abundance mentality. But really, it's worth it.

8 hours work is worth what percentage increase in chance to be hired? I'll spare you the maths, but a 5% chance of a 10% pay raise for a year is worth about a day. And that day gives you not a 5% but a doubling of the chances of being hired and it will increase the pay you can negotiate. If you want that job, give them fucking everything you can think of for a day, and present it nicely. No strings attached, no NDA, nothing conditional. It's your gift to them. (Do not say this). The only "thing in it for me" part is to add "... and yes, I'd like to do this for your company" at the end. (negotiate for pay later).

Lastly interviewers are not women. Even when they are women, you're not gaming them. Qualify yourself. Jump through hoops. Be willing and happy to prove your skills.

[–]ppvknifefight 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Excellent post. I love how your writing cuts through all of the BS and doesn't come off as the typical safe advice you'd find with a quick Google search.

That's red pill for ya.

[–]1APookIsAPook 8 points9 points  (1 child)

Always check out glassdoor.com and read the interview questions for the same position.

Interviewers don't have the time/don't give enough of a shit to come up with new interview questions for every candidate. Make sure you have great answers for previously asked questions and you'll be able to hit some out of the park.

[–]TRP VanguardCyralea 12 points13 points  (3 children)

My experience in the IT industry is similar. Couple of things:

Be honest

Only if you're a terrible liar. Otherwise lie through your teeth. Keep the lies to those that are difficult or impossible to verify. If I find you're lying to me you're not getting hired, but ultimately I don't really care if you have 5 years of experience with Oracle DB's, I just need to know that you can do the job and quickly learn what you don't know. I don't want to hear you say it that way, because that's code for "I don't actually know shit".

Sometimes, I try to hire women

I don't. HR always screens us female candidates because we have gender quotas we're trying to hit. I refuse to hire any. They're always lazier, they never work overtime, they never develop their skills after hours, and they always ruin the tightly knit male social structure just by being there. Guys are too retarded to focus on their tasks rather than try to get female validation, and women can't stop fucking gossiping for two seconds to do her job.

If You Are an SJW, I Will NEVER Fucking Hire You

Same. And believe me, in my city they're a dime a dozen. Bunch of limp-wristed low-testosterone fucks that take everything personally. They always end up being loners. Kills the social dynamic.

If you want to get hired in IT, I just need to know you're good at what you do and that I can tolerate you on a daily basis. The rest is fluff. Don't be a weirdo, and don't act like you've never seen a command line before.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I don't. HR always screens us female candidates because we have gender quotas we're trying to hit.

My point there was really about how difficult it is to find one who is as competent as a man, for many of the reasons you mention in your comment.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I think I may have a keeper on me. My Spouse works overtime, develops skills at home (to a fault). can't attest to how distracting she is, but didn't realize that this was considered to shelf female performance

[–][deleted] 4 points5 points  (15 children)

What is the best way to convey confidence in an interview without coming off as a total douche?

[–]TRP VanguardCyralea 21 points22 points  (8 children)

Same way you do it with women, by maintaining a demeanour that appears at ease and unassailable. Don't react in a spazzy or erratic way. The kind of thing you get from genuine abundance.

When you go to interviews, you want to adopt the mentality that you're doing them a favour by getting a chance to speak to you. You're a hot commodity and your interviewers are getting a chance to snag you. Doesn't matter if that's true, you play your strengths in your head and convince yourself of the fact.

[–]1Sergnb 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Absolutely the right answer. It's like in cinema; "Show, don't tell". You show your confidence by answering the questions in a level headed way, calmly, and demonstrating you've gone through this before and you know how to handle it. You don't "tell" your confidence by going on about how you are a perfectionist and you are awesome and you don't make mistakes.

[–]ColdEiric 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Be competent. Be more competent, so you do not need to give shit what the SJW or other children think. Forget appearance, unless you're a model or any other professional who needs to be pretty to make money.

Guys like Schwarzenegger and Bill Gates do not need to 'convey confident' or 'appear clean and proper', because they are competent. Be so competent that you do not give a shit about incompetent people. Just like Tiger Woods doesn't give a shit about what you think about his swing, because he knows better than you. Doctors don't give shit about what you think, nor do priests or rabbis, nor do electricians, nor do salesmen, nor do plumbers, nor do nurses, nor do secretaries, nor do engineers, nor do any other professional, because they know more about their own subjects than you do. They don't need to 'convey confidence' or any other platitude, because they are so competent in their subjects that they don't even have time to give a shit about stupid opinions.

[–]InSearchofOMG 4 points5 points  (0 children)

As someone who just got hired for a FT benefited position, and went through two interviews, the biggest confidence comes from OI. If you think the company needs you as much as you need them, you're putting yourself on an even keel, certainly helped me remember that none of this is life and death, it's a job.

[–]zpatriarchy 5 points6 points  (0 children)

you don't "convey" confidence, you will be confident if you follow his tips: research the company, have examples, etc. you will be prepared & can answer the questions. like all things, it requires work.

also have someone "quiz you" by practicing with someone, have them ask you interview questions & videotape it so you can see how you are.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

By being confident. How? If you're prepared, you've researched the company and you show up with time to spare you should be fine. "Confidence" in this situation is not the same as confidence in a club.

Also, have the right body language: good eye contact, good handshake, good posture.

[–]spicedncoke 4 points4 points [recovered]

One question you should also ask at the end of an interview:

"Tell me of some key responsibilities that I can get started on right away".

This is asked because the interviewers are nervous as fuck. They want to tell you why they REALLY need you but can't in the job ad because of HR bullshit. Listen very carefully because they are about to tell you the reasons why they are going to hire you.

[–]BOOOOOMSHAKALAKA 3 points4 points  (4 children)

Nice read, what did you say to the lady who called you out on your handshake?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 8 points9 points  (3 children)

She asked me why I didn't offer to shake her hand (I waited until she put hers out). So I said, projecting as much sincerity as I could muster, "First, I intended no offense, but for men, there is a protocol for that. You wait for the woman so extend her hand so you don't put her in the position of either refusing, or submitting to unwanted contact." That was the basics of it, as I remember. She was a bit surprised, but as I had a rationale, she was fine with it.

[–]Mofocheez 7 points8 points  (2 children)

The subtext here is that even though she is probably a staunch feminist, she still expected the man to take the initiative.

[–]Darth_Priapism 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Excellent information.

As someone who has just moved into working for the government I'd like to see if there's someone who can expand on this into that employment sector. Because of my career focus (civil planning) government has the best potential, however, coming from the corporate world, using many of your points already, did not play well in the government interviews. Basically, I had to become quite sheepish and "toe the line" in order to get a job.


[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I had to become quite sheepish and "toe the line" in order to get a job.

I am not at all surprised. The government is the biggest and most sclerotic employer in nation...no matter what nation you're in (unless it's Somalia.)

[–]Erkster18 3 points4 points  (1 child)

I was recently hired for a paid internship at a software company, and one interesting question that was asked was "What makes you angry?" After I had answered, she explained that the specifics of the answer weren't important, so long as the interviewer also explained how they deal with it and didn't just say "nothing". That's a lie. Everybody gets angry, and it's important that the employer knows whether or not you can manage yourself.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I may try that one out next time I interview a candidate.

[–]Endorsed Contributorredpillbanana 2 points3 points  (1 child)

If You Are an SJW, I Will NEVER Fucking Hire You. Not much to worry about in TRP, but I mention it anyways. The last thing I want is to have to listen to some twat drone on about her political views.

Just imagine working with Big Red and you'll see why this is one of the most important rules for a hiring manager.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Egad. That hair is an excellent example of aposematism, for sure.

[–]Endorsed Contributorredpillbanana 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Every university student should be required to read these guidelines.

One thing to note is that the folks trying to hire you are going to put under the microscope even the slightest personality fuck-up in your interview. They know you're on your best behavior and if you give any indication that you're going to be a royal PITA, they'll ding you to kingdom come.

Imagine the interviewer saying the following words: "He couldn't even refrain from <insert shitty behavior here> in an interview; what's he going to be like once he gets comfortable here?"

[–]redarkane 6 points7 points  (5 children)

Wow, remind me to never get a corporate job.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 13 points14 points  (3 children)

Oh, I'd hate it, too, but now I'm massively overpaid and I work out of my house, so life is pretty sweet.

[–]adidas558492 1 point2 points  (2 children)

what is it that you do? if you dont mind sharing..

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 10 points11 points  (1 child)

I am trained as a lawyer and I work in commodities. I have worked for three Fortune 500 companies and two Fortune Global 100 companies. I'm not "supposed to" work out of my house, but I decided I was going to. It's been 8 or 9 years and I haven't been fired for it yet. /grin

[–]Freiling 5 points6 points  (0 children)

What bitter fuckhead downvoted this? High five, man.

[–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Thanks on these ones. part of my MAP was getting back into the civilian sector, and it's been a lot of trial-and-error learning so far on the interview/resume front.

It's hard to get these kind of things brought up, no one I've known has been in an interview for over a decade, so it's like french to them. They are way more important to me than seeing that "girlX did something bad" stories floating around in here. It's like learning a new language when you're proficient in a complementary, but different one.

[–]CopyAndPaste2015 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Excellent post. Just one addition, answer all competency based questions as you already are in the role, not from your current position; I'm assessing your capability for a job you are not currrently doing so it's better if you can show me you are already thinking as you are in the job.

[–]RedDeadlift 2 points3 points  (0 children)

A very thorough and well written post. Thanks for this. Bookmarked.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Of all the interviews I had, I've gotten the job except one. That one I tried way too hard to act like I knew what I was talking about (deceit).

Besides being qualified for the job, the interview is largely about "Can I bear seeing and working with this person 5 days a week?" Granted I work in entertainment so it's much less about being qualified then a STEM field.

[–]bocor226 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This will be handy for when I will be internship hunting this winter. In IT, there are the additional technical questions you have to go through.

[–]hudsterboy 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Re: the handshake...

This may or may not be relevant, or seem obscure, but there are a lot of orthodox jewish women who work in IT, especially in big cities with big jewish populations. They do not shake men's hands. I'm sure there are other religious groups that have similar customs that have women in the workforce, so in general, I wait for the hand before I shake it.

[–][deleted] 3 points3 points

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[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Anyone can PM me about anything, at any time. I will answer on a time-available basis, if I think I can help.

[–]mgbkurtz 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I never thought about the Monday/Friday thing, but, yea, that's dead on.

[–]TheMGhandi 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Not sure if being honest is the best bet to land a job. Stretching the truth works, but huge lies can too. There are a few CEOs who claimed degrees they never had, schools they never attended, or experience that was fabricated. Obviously, they were outed by someone who wanted their position. It could have been someone who posed as a friend but worked as a spy (Law 14 of Power) or an enemy who wanted to destroy them completely (Law 15 of Power). Perhaps a way to stir up the hornets nest, so they may buy shares after they go down, and sell them when it's time for them to go up. The reasons are plentiful, you get the gist.

I must admit that your guide is perfect. Too perfect. And very clean. Absent of all risk. I would have preferred a much more interesting guide, but if you have to give out that type of information, then one really isn't capable of seeing it through.

[–]FascistWorldNewsMods 2 points3 points  (2 children)

I have a question for you, OP:

I don't have any social media accounts; how do HR and the interviewers react to this?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

They'll note that the didn't find anything negative and go back to doing whatever they do to pass the time in their 9 to 5 coffins.

Oddly enough, I had this very discussion with two of my fraternity brothers, one of who is now a techie and the other is a lawyer in a firm. The lawyer mentioned that applicants run the risk of either seeming out of step with the times by either not having social media or having shit on their (Naked Beer Pong!) that employers might see and ding them on.

Needless to say, I lit him up, with the techie piling on. /grin If a firm or company is run by d/bags, I don't want to work for them.

One could set up dummy social media accounts and then put the settings on "private", but why bother? If you don't have them, don't waste time with them.

Full Disclosure: my public-facing social media are carefully curated such that anyone who finds me--such as young women who are trying to find out more about me before they drop their panties for me--is going to see that I'm a fun guy with a lot of friends and cool hobbies. IOW, they're going to see exactly what I want them to see.

[–]mrpCamper 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I would say that you just detailed two good reasons to have a public facing social media presence that shows you as an upstanding member of society. Probably a good Red Pill tenant to do this anyhow.

[–]BRENDORVEGAS 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This belongs on the side bar of fame. I've read through it twice and will probably give it another glance when I apply to my next job.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

There can not be a general concrete guide for interviewing. It all depends on the industry. The details, that is.

I've sat on the interviewer side, in the tech field, and I can tell you what I look for:

  • Do you know shit about technology? Most applicants don't know shit. If you actually do know shit, you're already ahead of 80% of the competition. If you don't know shit and just trying to get in, well, start taking some college classes first.

  • How deep is your understanding of shit? My expectation here will vary depending on the role I'm hiring for. If I'm looking for juniors to train and mentor, this will not be a filter question; it would just give me an idea about where you are. If I'm looking for an intermediate role, then it would be a filtering question: I want to see if you're still a total n00b or not. If you are a total n00b, the remedy here is college classes + work on some projects.

  • Can you communicate? It doesn't matter how genius you are. If you can't communicate with the team your talent will be a burden. I know that because I've been that guy in the past.

That's it really. I will not bother with any bullshit question like "where do you find yourself in five years".

My personal advice is, if you interview at a place and they ask bullshit questions, it's a shitty place to work in. Next them.

If you are a junior, you should look for a place with smart people who can mentor you. A place where you will play a role in some project.

If you are intermediate, you should look for a place where you can start taking leadership roles in projects and also be around smart people who you can learn from.

If you are a senior, well, you set your own rules :)

[–]stargrunt6 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Finally, a post that isn't about women!

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (2 children)

I love going to interviews. The psychological aspects of it is thrilling, especially when you land the job and have the option of not taking it. You should start enjoying interviews, and try get as many behind you as possible. Even if you have no intention of leaving your current job. Think of it as keeping fit. They're all the same and pretty much the best confidence boost you could have if you do it right.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

There is something to be said for that. It will also give you a very good gauge of your current market value. Just be careful you don't burn any bridges that you might want to actually cross later.

[–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I venture I've had more interviews than most on this thread, for high level jobs as well (investment banks, counsulting firms, leadership positions, etc) and before you think this is a brag I used to be terrible at them. Had a stacked resume on paper but was absolutely awful about talking/bragging about myself. Growing up I also had a position of doubt when it came to my experiences and beliefs, was always cynical that someone out there was better and my experience wasn't worthy.

What changed? Confidence is almost everything. Look, the reason why you are there is because the company WANTS to hire you. They WANT you to be "the guy" to get the offer. They don't like interviewing as much as you do. So never think you are being overbearing when talking about experiences, the company, anything. Keep pressing and be excited to be there. Send thank you emails or better thank you letters. If some rando walks in during the interview then shake his hand and introduce yourself. Keep fucking pressing.

Someone who can confidently explain running their own lawn mower business has a better chance of being hired than someone with a great internship but can't talk about it for shit.

Truth be told interviewing is very similar to picking up women. No one wants to offer/date someone nervous, so even though you are being judged you need to mentally (not verbally) flip the script and jusge them

[–]DIDNT_READ_YOUR_SHIT 2 points2 points [recovered]

Can you expand on the "i'm a perfectionist" part?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The problem with that answer is that it's so well known it comes off as canned/insincere.

[–]Endorsed ContributorRedBigMan 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank you for the advice.

About half of it is common knowledge/common sense but knowing the reasons behind some of this shit makes it much easier to navigate.

I also like the answer to biggest weakness. I think I will be using that in the future mostly because I am an honest person myself.

[–]Redasshole 1 point2 points  (1 child)

When I go to interviews, I don't know why but I become weird. My social skills drops to the bare minimum, I get brain fog, I can't hold eye contact, I stuttle and I give off a very weird vibe. Few weeks ago I went to an interview for a company I didn't give a shit about. I knew almost nothing about it, I didn't care at all and I was just being myself. It went very well.

It seems to be stress. However, I can't seem to be able to get rid of it. I tried meditation, breathing techniques, jerking off before the interview, weird chinese gymnastic moves...

Any advice?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Abundance mentality. Once you have it, with women or interviews, everything opens up.

Try listening to this, before you go in.

[–]LimboSystem 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Perfect timing! I have an interview next month and was just beginning to get my shit together. I especially liked the "questions you should ask me part" - definitely going to remember that.


[–]Dakoa 2 points2 points [recovered]

Hey man thanks for the advice, it really covered some grey areas for me as a teenager.

However, a concern I have is that an internship I'm applying for has a written preference for GPA, and during my first few years I really screwed myself, then due to medical, family, and teacher issues I once again got a shitty semester after a year hiatus from fuck ups. I can do it; I have the skills, drive, and personality, but I'm damn anxious about how critical they may be about my GPA. Do you have any advice on how to handle the situation?

[–]DeityAmongMortals 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Read 'The Rules Of Work' if you want a more in depth analysis of how to be successful with your career in general. It's really a good read for those who find themselves working excessively hard, but not getting anywhere fast with their job progression. The book is filled with ideas which synchronise with TRP. So be warned, the book does not have a list of cheats and hacks to get ahead, just simple and plain advice on how to get your hard work noticed and rewarded by others. If you arn't willing to work hard then it won't work. Good book none the less.

[–]everythingisthrown 1 point2 points  (3 children)

Thanks for your great Corporateland stickies. Any info on pre-interview? Resume/app

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Have someone read/edit your resume....and cover letter. A lot of people don't use them anymore, but it seems to me like another opportunity to sell yourself to a potential employer.

[–]spicedncoke 2 points2 points [recovered]

To add to that (your posts are awesome btw):

Find someone who is a hiring manager in your field. Ask them out for coffee, get some tips, and go over your resume/cover letter with them. They are still really relevant at least in my field anyway

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

See if your uni (for those of you still at uni, or in HS) has a mentorship program. My old LS does and I used to take kids on.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (5 children)

As a brand-new college grad who had multiple job offers in a STEM field: NOBODY gives a flying fuck about your GPA, however, About 85% of the time, I was asked about my hobbies. So i think that reinforces TRP a little bit. Have interesting hobbies/be an interesting person.

[–]spicedncoke 2 points2 points [recovered]

Really depends on the field. In my world, GPA is still a huge thing, especially for entry level at Big 4. Not as much as it used to be, but depending on office you will not get an interview if it's below a 3.5. (4 point scale)

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Mine was a 2.5. Nobody ever asked about it in the interview, nor why it wasn't on my resume. It was a total non-issue. But I work in biotech/pharma, so I guess your mileage may vary

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

That can be true, particularly if the position is for an "experienced hire". I know a guy who went to one of the top engineering schools and basically if you get out of there with a 2.1 it's like a 3.75 from somewhere else.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

My STEM buddies and I would joke that a C- in Organic Chemistry is the equivalent of 4 A's in bullshit humanities courses (gender studies, art history, etc). Probably even more so lol.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

As someone finally landing a corporate job after about 8 years of trying, thanks for writing these. Your advice is indispensable.

[–]Exogyra_Ponderosa 1 point2 points  (0 children)

just gonna keep this book marked

[–]1AmlanceJockey 1 point2 points  (6 children)

I was advised to dress like you already work there. Is that good advice?

[–]rigbyismyhomie 2 points2 points [recovered]

I'm in Law School, and this shit is gold. This is exactly what they teach us to do.

If only I could get a firm worth a damn to give me an interview. Hell, I'd take an elevator pitch at this point.

[–]dukechaz 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Been said here, but this is an excellent post with information that is spot on from start to finish. Working in an industry similar to yours, and having sat on both sides of the interview table, there's something here for the rookie to the seasoned vet. Well done.

[–]Evileddie13 1 point2 points  (0 children)

My personal fav. In another life, I'm a commoditys trader. I used to listen to a 'squak box', that commentated The Chicago Board of Trade. It was addictive, like listening to a sporing event. On the bucket list, I want it live and in person.

[–]aelysium 1 point2 points  (1 child)

In terms of what to ask the interviewer, what's your experience with questions like "Why should I work here?"

I've seen it done/recommended and am curious if you have any experience or thoughts on the matter.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I'd be a bit lest blunt than that. Ask what they like about working there, and then follow up with what they dislike, what they wish "worked better" etc. You may bet something useful out of them.

[–]mrpCamper 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Great stuff. All very true. I also interview a lot. Including some college students. I'll add...

Fucking smile! Smiling shows confidence.

When shaking a hand, the grip should be like your holding something heavy like an axe or a hammer. Not tight but firm.

If I ask you if you have any questions and you say no. You are not getting the job. period end of story.

Also, I'm in the tech industry and hire programmers. You need to show me that you enjoy technology. You enjoy programming, problem solving and reading up on technology. It isn't a job it's your passion.

[–]Spiral-knight 0 points1 point  (1 child)

How does this translate to the corporate world? Will "mercenary loyalty" that is, clearly in it for the money without the branch swinging that will cost you your reputation, fuck a person over? This is a problem for me on my admittedly low, low, low end interviews. I work for money, passion comes a distant second to being able to tolerate my job

[–]mrpCamper 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If it is a non career type low end job, I would assume people aren't looking for passion. They are looking for hardworking and reliable. Depending on how hard it is to train someone, loyalty comes in. If it takes me 5 minutes to train you, loyalty isn't key. If I need to break you in over the course of a month and it's costing me hours a day, loyalty is important.

[–]BannedBandit 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Best post I've read on here in months.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thx. I try to help when I can.

[–]soadaa 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I feel as if I could do decent on interviews but I have very little practical experience in my field. I'm sure I could do the job if trained a bit.

Definitely relates to women. Being confident is great, but you want something to back yourself up so that you can be confident.

[–]apskidb 1 point2 points  (0 children)

just wanted to say thanks to OP for your post. I had an interview today and closed with your 'is there anything about my candidacy that you perceive as a weakness?' question and it worked a charm and led to the interviewer asking me in for another round.

[–]St_OP_to_u_chin_me 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I don't care what they say, I love you TRP. Thank you. I'll let you know how it goes. It's a big step going from 55k yr on hourly to 65k yr salary. As well its upper-entry-level to intermediate level work. Big dogs too.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Happy I could help. I hope things break the right way for you.

[–]semen_biscuit 2 points3 points  (3 children)

You mentioned working in commodities, and mentioned working with traders... I really want a job in commodities trading, and I'm on the job market now. Any industry specific advice?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Without knowing anything about your qualifications, you should be researching internship opportunities. These are not, btw, simply summer internships, but more of a 'new hire' program where interns are rotated through various depts. A lot of guys on the desk started somewhere else within the organization, and that's been true at every trading outfit I've worked at.

Also, there's nothing stopping you from researching the hell out of the market. If you're interviewing with Cargill, you should know what's happening with their competitors, too.

[–]1favours_of_the_moon 2 points3 points  (6 children)

What's your take on gold and oil?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 4 points5 points  (5 children)

My take is that markets will fluctuate.

I haven't checked with our oil desk lately, but I think oil is going to stay down for a while. The Saudis are going to keep the spigot on , no matter what, and more Iranian oil will make it to market as restrictions roll off. I think you're going to see more companies in the shale space defaulting and costs of borrowing going up for the remaining players. That said, when I take positions int he market, it's usually with refiners, anyway.

If I ever figure out gold, I will let you know. I never do well in it. I get the miners wrong, I get physical gold wrong. Gold and banks have taught me to stay in energy & industrials.

I took some profits earlier in the year and then did a China short. That made money for me twice this year (although if you'd had the same position all year, you'd have taken a 20%+ haircut; the expression is "buy and hold" not "short and hold". Those aren't long term positions). Right now I'm in cash, mostly, until I figure out what my next move is. I do mostly private placements now, and less in stocks, other than my 401k, where I don't have much choice (any, really).

Hope this helps. Don't take any positions based on what I write b/c I may well have moved out of them a week later. Just sayin'.

[–]PoopInMyBottom 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I saw a presentation the other day by a guy who went to the level of tracing train lines on Google Maps to check whether or not a $7 million batch of sample ore could have been sent to a processing plant.

He called every single crossing point on the US/Canada border, and even looked up the traffic data for an entire state to see if there was enough volume in trucks to have transported that ore. He had an incredible amount of information and was stacking up an enormous position (and this was a big fund). For one final check they called a tiny gravel loading train yard in the middle of nowhere just to be sure they'd eliminated every possible loading point. The train yard didn't even have the facilities to load gold ore, and there was no documentation indicating it was even connected to the line - thank you Google Maps.

Turns out the entire sample was loaded from that yard, and the mine installed their own loading system to do it. They with this close to a significant loss on that position and had to go to an insane level of detail just to eliminate the loss. They didn't make a dime from that information.

In the past, they've rented apartments with telescopes trained on company's board rooms and organised spy plane flyovers of mines to get enough information to have an edge.

When you're competing with people like that, you really have no chance. Gold is hard.

[–]spicedncoke 1 points1 points [recovered]

I haven't checked with our oil desk lately, but I think oil is going to stay down for a while. The Saudis are going to keep the spigot on , no matter what, and more Iranian oil will make it to market as restrictions roll off. I think you're going to see more companies in the shale space defaulting and costs of borrowing going up for the remaining players. That said, when I take positions int he market, it's usually with refiners, anyway.

My boss told me in my interview:

"Oil is trading for $40/bbl. We are turning around and selling it for $1/litre. Who do you think is making money? Hint: it's not the guys pulling it out of the ground".

I think oil will stay down too. Good for me as it keeps me busy but bad when I want to go on vacay. Canadian $$ is taking a beating. What's your thoughts on that?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Canadian $$ is taking a beating. What's your thoughts on that?

Canada's GDP has a higher percentage of natural resources than is typical for a first world state. The tar sands oil is among the most expensive (likely the most expensive) to extract, refine and transport, as opposed to SA's that comes out of the ground wherever you stick a drill (although it trades at a discount to Brent b/c of it's higher sulfur content.) Because of this, so long as oil remains low, it's going to be a drag on the Canadian economy. That, coupled with a slowing China and a soft American economy (this is much more important to Canada), Canadian exports are going to be weaker than typical.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

What are some common questions that you should avoid asking the interviewer?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Anything that makes you look lazy, disinterested such as questions about salary/benefits/vacation. Save that for when they make you an offer. I've talked about it in first interviews but only when the interviewer brought it up and only when prefacing the discussion with "I'm only discussing this because you brought it up," and proceeding from there.

[–]incognitodoritos 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Anything that could've easily been researched beforehand. Ask them what their company does and they'll be wondering why wasting time isn't listed as one of your hobbies.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (2 children)


What is this?

[–]Toastlove 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I got my first and current job by impressing the business owner, no interview or application process. 4 years later when I'm looking for a new job I feel like a stupid teenager again. I had my first actual job interview and I really felt like I had fucked it afterward, despite doing quite well on the practical assessments they ran. I had another one a month later which I think went much better but I still didn't get the job. Neither were forthcoming with any feedback though so I don't know where I went wrong. Now I've made those mistakes though I'm going to make sure it doesn't happen again.

[–]ANakedBear 1 point2 points  (0 children)

My current and previous jobs where like this. Knew some one who knew some one. Little in the was of interviewing or formal hiring process.

[–]ColdEiric 1 point2 points  (3 children)

/u/VasiliyZaitzev, why have you waited with this text?! This is excellent, awesome, superb! If you have more of these, these which have been cleaned of every piece of shitty SJW/Politically-Correct bullshit, then I would gladly read them too.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 3 points4 points  (2 children)

I read a question in askTRP about whether to disclose current salary, so I wrote that one (I think that was the second "CorporateLand" article), with an eye toward doing this one later.

It wasn't a question of waiting, it's a question of writing. It's more work than you'd think, otherwise I'd have my own blog.

[–]ColdEiric 3 points4 points  (1 child)

It wasn't a question of waiting, it's a question of writing. It's more work than you'd think, otherwise I'd have my own blog.

I guess I chose my words poorly.

I try to write myself, and I know how difficult it is to produce anything which is a good read. I like to read, more than the average guy, and I've gotten a lot of comments about how I need to clarify my thoughts and present them orderly, so my thoughts would be useful to them, as this was to me.

Thank you once again, for taking the time to write it clearly and orderly. I'll take a look at your history for more gems.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank you once again, for taking the time to write it clearly and orderly.

Oh, ok. I get you now. I work with words every day, and explain complex ideas to people who have no basis for understanding it, so I've learned to use bullet points and negative space. I also re-read it and try to think about it from the reader/customer point of view, and then try to squeeze more daylight out of it. Even then I miss stuff.

[–]michael_wilkins 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Great interview tips except most of the time HR interviews people for some reason.

[–]IASGame 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I have a couple of questions, a general one and a more specific question.

First is, do you ding people on age in general?

Second, longer question. For many years my dream job was to get a tenure job in fundamental research (the type that is never funded by companies). In my specific field this is very difficult and I have to be realistic - I may not get it. Do you have advice for applications / interviews for someone like me, with lots of research experience (over 10 years) in academia to switch into a "Corporate Land" job (without any experience in that kind of job, apart from a lot of transferable skills)?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

First is, do you ding people on age in general?

No. Because that would be illegal. Beyond that, I don't particularly care about what age/gender/appearance someone has, I care about them being able to do their job and get along in the firm's culture.

With regard to your second question, you are going to have to make the sale based on the portability of your skills. You should assess them and decide where, in CorporateLand you would want to work without going nuts and then proceed from there.

[–]SW9876 0 points1 point  (5 children)

I never understood how to respond to, "Tell me about yourself". There are a million things one could say, so what does the interviewer really want? Could you provide an example response?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 3 points4 points  (4 children)

It's your opportunity to pitch yourself for the job, let's say at Boss Corp - "Well, right now I work for ACME, where I handle the largest single national account. Before that I worked at Standard Dynamic, where I handled a portfolio of regional accounts. What excites me about the postion with Boss Corp is the chance to manage my own sales team [blah, blah, blah]"

[–]thepitman 1 points1 points [recovered]

What about if you don't have a lot of experience? Should you ever briefly (1 sentence) mention that you came from another country (I have an accent so it's obvious) and then talk about college+ or just strictly stick to college/work introductions?

Thanks for the post, still reading but looks really promising and helpful!

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

In the US, discrimination based on national origin is illegal. Since you, as the candidate, brought it up, it shouldn't be a big deal. That said, you need not mention it, and, depending on who you are interviewing with, it might make them a bit nervous b/c sometimes interviewers are dosed up on "DON'T ASK ANY ILLEGAL QUESTIONS!!!"

If you do, I would try and do it with humor, "Before we begin, I should tell you that people often have a hard time placing my accent. I am from [other country], but I left b/c I couldn't stand the food there. On the plus side, I am fluent in [other country's language], should the need ever arise. Just don't ask me to eat [other country's cuisine.]"

[–]thepitman 2 points2 points [recovered]

Oh man, that's gold and VERY true actually. A lot of people mistake me for being a Russian. Pure gold, thanks!

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

I'm a little older (30), but my current job is chill and I have long hair now. Gonna apply for new positions soon, how big of a ding is this?

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Depends on the culture where you apply. If it is a white shirt/tie place, you're going to set at least one person off. Where I work, we wouldn't give a shit, as long as you can do the job and aren't a dick.

I wear a full beard. 20 years ago, I shaved it off in advance of a big interview. Of the 7 men I interviewed with, all but one had facial hair, whether a beard, goatee or mustache. So I grew mine back in later.

[–]Danedina 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It's like anything related to style: if it works then it's a plus. If it's tied back clumsily and your suit doesn't fit and your tie is old then you're giving off a slacker vibe and you might as well not show up. It's good to stand out if you can walk the walk.

[–]old-path 0 points1 point  (5 children)

man screw this, if i don't make more gig work for myself to not live in poverty i'm going woodsman survivalist. rather turn into a rag toy for bobo the bear then walk on eggshells for the rest of my life.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (4 children)

It's typically more banal than that, although I've seen my share of old guys with the life sucked out of them. That may have as much to do with them (a) marrying some shrike, and/or (b) not being three-dimesional as people than anything else.

[–]old-path 0 points1 point  (3 children)

whole shrike thing adds element of partial explaination for why employment is the way it is. the wrong woman can nag away your resolve in life and settle for some iteration of wage slavery, not going comrade old-path here but office and work politics would only be bearable to me if i actually did choose them vs lets say, homesteading which is non-existant. kudos on being able to survive and thrive in corporate land but thats what makes stuff like that unbearable to me, survival. if that is the vocabulary used to describe employment, i choose woods survival if my small business goals fiz out. im sure id see it differently if a femanazi or similar creature tlp helps negoriate tied me down earlier in life. having no nagging in the background lets me follow my own heart even if odd to others, especially empowered women looking to tie me to a desk so i can buy a house they can take once the mortage is paid off.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

It can actually be a decent life, depending on what your goals are. I admit I am something of an outlier, but my time is basically my own for 6-7 hours of the day, I can travel pretty much when/where I wish within the US provided I'm available during business hours (and I could get away with it in Europe also, except when I'm there, I don't want to bother checking my emails,) and the travel (which is mostly discretionary on my part) allows me to build up miles/status with airlines and hotels so for free/reduced rates for business class and hotel suites. Call be bourgeois if you like, but at my age (48) I am all about comfort, eating good food, drinking good wine, and fucking 20-25 year old girls.

Women, OTOH, kill your dreams. The reason the Wright brothers could do what they did was b/c they weren't married. If they were, they'd have been working down at ACME Tool & Die (or whatever) in Sucktown, Ohio, with their elder, miserable, married brother.

[–]old-path 0 points1 point  (1 child)

yeah...on the deepest level i aspire to be either a buddhist monk or forest dwelling hermit. right now i pick up gigs and fix devices, doesn't get me world trips but thats kind of the point, i feel no want for them. i didn't grow out of tlp specifically, just from all the unaffiliated critical thinking guys that saw no benefit in being a horse rode by a entitled princess. the whole sucktown ohio thing is basicly what i was getting at and the last thing id ever want. im 28 and managed to not tank my life with children and a shrieking, demeaning monster. intutively obvious morals play a heavy point of contimplation and action to me and this kind of place definately is good for sheilding oneself from a very insidious and corosive form of harm.

i try to be honest with women im scoping as fuck friends and some still try to dupe me into being stuck with them, aware enough to conciously cut it out as it crops up. im really happy to read your story, its nice positive confirmation to not fall into that pit from someone clearly enjoying themselves from not doing such. basicly what i hear from older guys that never got tied down, life isn't a frigid, repetitive nightmare.

wright brothers..they say anything truely worth doing or wanting to get done happens with free time and being free to tinker. i honestly dont think anything legendary got done with a ball and chain. even buddha before he realized what he did in solitude ditched his wife...

enjoy life man, right now my friends and associates are either getting divorced after their first marriage, getting gamed by their partners that they make excuses for, or benching 'noble' raft hoppers. i'm not and i fully enjoy my time and ass when it comes.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I should add that, while there were a few specific guys I was thinking of, they might well have turned out to be mice anyway. I also know a guy whose wife dutifully gave up her job (she was a teacher, so NBD), bore his children, is a SAHM, and dutifully follows him from city to city as his career evolves. She also doesn't give him any shit about his hobbies, which sometimes take him away from the family.

i honestly dont think anything legendary got done with a ball and chain.

I think, more likely than not, that's true.

[–]AenHun 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I feel lucky, because in my university there were a few seminars held by interviewers who work for companies about applying for a job and the screening afterwards. They really stressed the facebook/social media clean up, even on smaller scale jobs like student part-time jobs it makes a huge difference.

[–]Raikkonen716 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I agree pretty much with everything you wrote. Just one question, why you wrote not to bring a suitcase? I find it very professional, on the contrary. Surely better than one empty handed.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorVasiliyZaitzev[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I was being more facetious. Most people bring a folio, and that's fine. I wouldn't care either way if someone brought a briefcase.

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