Preparing for a “Silicon Valley Style” coding interview.

By: Dan Bader – http://bit.ly/2xbr0oE

Participating in a “Silicon Valley style” coding interview can feel scary as heck.n

Unlike other professionals, it seems to be okay for software developers to expect to get humiliated at a job interview.

“What, you can’t code up a recursive descent parser on a whiteboard in 7.5 minutes? How DARE YOU even apply for this job!”

Yeah, it’s one of the things that sucks about our industry—

Personally, I believe that 80-90% of the questions that you get asked during the typical coding interview have nothing to do with your real performance on the job.

But unfortunately, these interviews aren’t going to go away over night.

If you want a well-paid job as a software developer, you’re likely going to encounter some coding quiz as part of your interviewing experience.

For the foreseeable future, interviewers are going to keep squeezing you through the same processes and will keep asking you those same questions…

And if you’re like me, there’s a pretty slim chance you’ll pass an interview like that without some serious prep work—either to learn the right skills or to refresh your memory.

Alright, that all sounds pretty glum, no?

But here’s what you need to realize, interviewing is a skill you can learn like any other.

It’s something you get better at with practice.

It’s true—

Just remember that all that prep work needs time. So be sure to plan ahead with ample of time to get enough study days in before your “big day.”

If I had a coding interview coming up in 1-2 months, here’s a rough outline of what I’d do to prepare:

Step 1:

Buy the following two books: “Elements of Programming Interviews (Python Ed.)” and “Cracking the Coding Interview.”

Step 2:

Buy a whiteboard and some markers. Put the whiteboard on an actual wall, and make sure you get a board with a decent size. This is where 90% of your prep work will happen over the next few weeks.

Step 3:

Every day, stand in front of your whiteboard and work on at least one problem from the books listed in Step 1. Talk out loud about what you’re doing, and snap a photo of the board when you’re done. Set a 30-minute timer for each problem to put some pressure on yourself. If you can’t solve a problem, pick up the book and go through all the motions with the solution in front of you. Rinse and repeat.

The closer you get to your interview date the more you want to practice—ramp it up to around 5 problems per day in the last two weeks before your interview.

Just repeat after me: “Interviewing is a learned skill.”

The more “reps” you can get on each problem, the better your chances of getting a job offer will be.

Happy Pythoning!

Dan Bader is a self-professed Python “Nut” and is passionate about helping Python developers take their coding skills to the next level. His articles, videos, and tutorials have reached over half a million developers around the world. 

 

PythonTek’s Commitment to the Victims of Hurricane Harvey

Like everyone else in the US and Texas we sit and watch with heavy hearts the devastation that Hurrican Harvey has brought to Texas.

Hurricane Harvey’s punishing rains, fierce winds, and raging floods have left a wake of devastation that Texans have never seen before. Families have been forced to evacuate their homes, not knowing whether they’ll still be standing when they return and businesses have been completely destroyed leaving owners wondering how long it will take to rebuild.

We have seen tremendous acts of selflessness by people helping rescue people from flooded houses and apartment buildings, providing food and shelter for those displaced, and making financial donations.

In order do our part, PythonTek is pledging to donate 10% of their revenue from September 1st – December 31st to the following relief funds: The American Red Cross, Houston Relief Fund, and Heart to Heart International.

We will also be encouraging our clients to make matching contributions to one of the above charities.

Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected through out the state of Texas.

Dave Hitt – Founder

 

Jim McGrath Joins PythonTek

We are pleased to announce and welcome the addition of Jim McGrath as Director of Strategy and Innovation to our team.

Jim brings over 30 years of IT executive leadership for both small and large enterprise companies in the Austin area and has a track record for building high performing teams and organizations.

Jim is not only deeply technical in all aspects of IT but a recognized leader and mentor to his clients and all levels of talent.

Jim’s strong winning attitude and personality are assets that will enhance PythonTek’s ability to meet the needs of our customers as we continue to provide quality service to Python community.

In joining PythonTek Jim says, “I am excited about this new opportunity to build a best in class company specifically dedicated to the Python community”.

Please join us in welcoming Jim to the PythonTek team. He can be reached at jmcgrath@pythontek.com.

 

Niche IT Recruiting Firm Focuses on Python Community

AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)– PythonTek, a specialized recruitment firm focused on the Python community, today announced it has launched operations serving both Python developers seeking jobs and companies looking for Python talent. Rising in popularity, Python is now the fourth most requested programming skill according to the TIOBE Index for May 2017.

“Traditional recruiting firms try to be everything to everybody. PythonTek is a unique IT recruiting firm specializing only in the Python community,” said David Hitt, PythonTek founder and Director of Client Engagement. “By specializing in Python talent, we understand the challenges companies face in attracting and retaining staff, are able to build a more focused pipeline of candidates and help reduce our clients’ hiring costs.”

PythonTek is based in Austin, Texas, a state with the second highest employment for software developers. Texas employs 60,550 software developers with an annual mean wage range of $101,720 – $129,440, as reported in the May 2016 employment statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor.

To assess depth of knowledge, PythonTek incorporates a technical screening to assess a candidate’s familiarity with common Python frameworks. Screening is done by top Python leaders in both the public and private sectors to ensure the best fit between candidates and hiring companies.

“Our mission is to provide our clients unrivaled customer service, honesty, and transparency. Our candidates can expect access to opportunities that will advance their careers while working on cutting-edge products that are positively impacting today’s world,” said Hitt.

About PythonTek

PythonTek is a niche IT recruiting firm that focuses only on the Python community. Based in Austin, Texas, the company works to provide the best match for both job candidates and companies hiring Python developers. Company founders have more than 40 years of recruiting and IT consulting experience with small, medium and large enterprise companies.

Learn more: 

https://www.pythontek.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/pythontek1

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/pythontek

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pythontek/

 

Why Python?

By Dr. Rob Flemming

PyDr.thon is an easy-to-learn yet deceptively powerful programming language. Its clear concise readable code, large standard library, and built-in testing framework make it ideal for rapid software development. While the long-standing industry anecdote that one python programmer can do in two months what two C++ programmers can do in one year may stretch the truth, it is certain that Python shaves hours, days, or even months off development projects depending on their size and complexity. What’s more, the small program size and readability of code facilitates the upkeep and maintenance of Python code.

When comparing Python to other languages it is not hard to find individual areas where they shine brighter: C++ is faster, R has better visualization, PERL can be even more concise. However, it is the unique combination of powerful features that attracts programmers and keeps the Python one of the most popular and required languages by clients, especially in the areas of web development, software development, data analysis and scientific computing.

The ease with which the basics of Python programming are picked up combined with a healthy job market for Python programmers tempts many of varying skill to promote themselves online as Python Developers.

When hiring for python projects or full-time employees it is important to incorporate a technical interviewer to assess the candidates’ depth of knowledge and familiarity with common Python frameworks. Ideally, a small test project would be assigned as well to evaluate both programming and communication skills.

Candidates’ contributions to code repositories and user communities should also be considered. The combination of these approaches along with a well-crafted job description will ensure that the best candidate is attracted and chosen.

Dr. Rob Flemming is the Co-Founder of hoytNIVA, a global technology, and human capital consulting firm. Dr. Flemming is a graduate of MIT, earned his Doctorate in Applied Mathematics from Northwestern University and has served in senior-level DoD Cryptology and private client leadership positions for over 20-years.

Terms of Use
Privacy Policy