For recruiters & hiring managers.
So you're interested in recruiting me? That's cool. I might just be interested in working for your company too. I know you're probably really busy trying to find great candidates. So to save both of us time, I thought I'd talk a little about what I'm looking for, and what I'm not looking for, in a new job.
If any of these apply to your company, I can't work there.
- Your company doesn't allow full time remote work. This is non negotiable. I was working remotely before the pandemic, and I don't plan on working in an office ever again.
- You won't pay me in actual money. Equity can't pay my rent or buy donuts, and crypto is volatile.
- You let (or make) your employees work themselves to death. No job is worth losing sleep over. No job is worth risking your health. No job is worth sacrificing yourself. If I'm in front of my computer for 70 hours a week it's because I'm binge watching Parks and Recreation, not because I'm doing work for you. I simply won't work for a company that doesn't value work/life balance. It's not worth it to me. Not for any amount of money.
I'd interview for your company if I were desperate. Otherwise, I'll have to pass.
- Your company has been in the news for doing bad shit. Things like interfereing with democracy, facilitating genocides, working with organizations that abuse human rights, treating workers poorly, etc. I like going to sleep at night knowing that I didn't contribute to making the world a worse place.
- You have an outdated interviewing process. Don't ask me to do things, like solving LeetCode like problems on a Zoom call, that we both know I won't be doing on the job. Don't expect me to have things memorized that I don't have memorized because if I ever need to know about it, I can just Google it. Tech needs to fix the way interviews are done but until then, I've decided not to participate in this style of intervewing.
I might be interested in working for your company.
- You hire juniors. I think that tech should hire more people who are early in their career. I believed that when I was just starting out (I even had a whole newsletter dedicated to supporting juniors), and now that I'm about 4 years in, I still believe it.
- You have a truly diverse team. For example, are there other engineers who look like me? Do any employees identify as disabled or LGBTQ? Would I be able to talk to them before making my decision?
- Your company values work/life balance. My job is the least interesting thing about my life. So I prefer to fit my job around my life, instead of vice versa. Tell me about how your company makes it easier for people to have a life.
- Your interview process is humane and makes sense. Instead of regurgitating programming language trivia, or solving LeetCode problems, perhaps I'll get to do an actual project that solves an actual problem. That might be fun. (Given advance notice I would be open to a paid trial project.) I also expect your company to be transparent, communicative, and efficient during the process. If you're already thinking of an internal candidate, just say so. If you pay below market or don't offer benefits I might already have, tell me. (Better yet, share the salary range and benefits up front so that I know whether or not interviewing is worth my time.) If you're going to leave me in the dark for weeks at a time, don't.
- Accessibility in your product, and in your culture, is a priority and not an afterthought. Maybe your engineering department has an a11y task force. Hopefully accessibility is considered at every step of the product development processs. Maybe everyone is required to go though accessibility training. Maybe you have an ERG for disabled employees.
Where do I sign?
If your company has these characteristics, I might just be excited about working there.
- Your company is actually doing good in the world. I know that every company says that they're making the world a better place. But that's simply not true. Maybe your company is making one aspect of people's lives easier, and that's cool. But to me that's not the same thing as making the world a better place. I used to do non-profit work, so perhaps my bar for "making the world a better place" is high. But if you think your company is actually doing this, shoot me an email.
- Working for your company makes my non-work life better. This is extremely important to me. You know what my main goals in life are right now? Keeping my physical and mental health in check, and becoming a better dancer. Not killing myself at work. I need time to run, and lift, and go to dance meetups, and get a good night's sleep, and write in my journal, and learn to DJ, and go to music festivals, and make new friends. I need to work somewhere where I can do those things, where I can take care of myself and have a life, and still have a job. How will working for you help me be a better, healthier, more fulfilled person, outside of work? That's a question I'll keep in mind while I'm interviewing.