January 07, 2007

What did you say?

So, recently we have been doing a lot of interviewing at imeem. And sometimes I am very surprised at ho w the interview goes, both pleasantly and not. So here is a list of some dos and donts for interviewing in general, and specifically at a startup.

  • DO know what the company is about. What it's core goals are, and what it's product is. It is ALWAYS discouraging to interview someone who has no idea what sort of work they are applying to do
  • DONT be apathetic. Especially when interviewing at a startup. If you are interviewing at Yahoo! or Google, or Microsoft maybe you can get away with it, but at a startup? No way. Startups live and die by employees who give 130%, and walking in and acting like you couldn't care is a great way to hear 'no thanks'
  • DONT bitch endlessly about your current job. Not only is it not important to me in evaluating if you will fit technically and personally at our company. It is also looks really really bad. All I hear when people start whining about their current boss, or their current job, or whatever is 'blah blah blah blah blah'. And I know when you are interviewing at your next job after you would work for me, you would be bitching about me. 'No thanks, no hire'. However, talking about your current job is fine. Just not bitching.
  • DONT talk about other interviews you are doing now. Basically everything I said above applies in principle. It is just not interesting. Your opinion on our competitor, or another wank web2.0 startup, or Yahoo! doesn't help me fit you into our company. It just bores me. I live in Bay Area, if I wanted to talk to someone about web2.0 shit, I will just open my door and throw a rock, it will likely hit 3 people working at a web2.0 company. Its BORING
  • DO ask everyone you interview with questions. Even if someone else has already answered your question, getting more information and more views on questions as simple as "What do you like about working here?" is always good. As well, it is always nice towards the end of the interview to not have to be asking the questions.

I guess this turned into more of a DONT list than a DO list, but whatever :). And as always, if you are interested in interviewing, email me.

Posted by tberman at January 7, 2007 01:03 AM