2 min read

A powerful question to ask your next interviewer

I’ve asked this question at the end of every interview, and I’ve always left with an opportunity.

@heyshadowsmith

April 2, 2022

Nearing the end of my 4th round interview for a Software Engineer position at a tech startup, I was asked by my interviewers if I had any questions for them, and little did they know, I was ready to ask a tough question designed to force them to show their hand.

I asked:

After learning all you have about me, what would be a main reason I don’t get hired for this position?

One of the interviewers answered by saying:

Our VP of Engineering likes to see more experience in testing, and we haven’t gotten a good read on your experience there.

To which, I replied:

I have written a 2,000 word article on how to use Test Driven Development to build Vue components with Jest. I’ll happily send it to the recruiter right after this interview.

Needless to say, the interviewers and the VP of Engineering were all blown away by the article, and I got the job.


So how does this work?

I specifically designed this question to get interviewers to reveal the difference between what they know about me v.s. who they are looking for. This creates an opportunity at the 11th hour of any interview for me to satisfy objections to my employment and leave a lasting impression on those that are helping determine my fate.

After using this question to great success over the years, I swear by this tactic, and it is easily one of the most actionable tips I share with anyone who is interviewing for a new job.

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