I recently went for an interview for a programming job. I had prepared all the necessary answers such as “Tell me about yourself” and “What have you done recently that was cool?”. I was looking forward to getting all technical with those that were to interview me.
A few minutes into the interview I got the feeling that 2 of the 3 there were technical (the 3rd was a manager but I’m not sure if he was technical in a previous lifetime).
Then came the questions: “What have you done recently that provided excellence customer service?”, or “How did you react in this situation?”.
I am a PROGRAMMER. I code for a living and I actually really enjoy it – have been doing so for more than 20 years now. This was a bit of an eye opener for me. They could’ve given me a SQL statement and told me to optimize it, debug some code or design (on paper) a screen layout with standards. Or ask me what sort of programming standards I’ve used.
I could see that some of them seemed to want to get techie, but had to stick to the list. I was just dying to get my hands dirty and talk techie, but it was not to be. My guess is the interview would have gone on a lot longer than 60 minutes had we been given the opportunity to really discuss things.
I don’t know what the psychology is behind “target selection”. What happened to the days of “Can you code?” and “Write me a screen”?
So, what do you think? Is there a place for targeted selection in programming jobs? Should it be a combination of TS and hard core techie? I’d like to hear what you have to say.