Secret techie interview tip

True Story: After the banking crisis of 2008, the employment market (both freelance and perm) drastically dried up here in London. On one occasion, I submitted circa ~1200 job applications, went to 13 interviews, and received only one offer – for a fixed 6 week contract in a town I didn’t like.

Given this was so utterly time consuming, what was I going to do to sustainably find contact and freelance gigs in this new market reality…???

I decided the single best thing I could do was to (at least) get noticed by each interviewer, amongst the crowd of other candidates.

Aside from turning up in a Safari Suit, one approach that always worked well and I liked taking was to use one or two distinctive slang words or something slightly bordering towards swearing.  Nothing too extreme though. 

What that did was break the mould compared to every other candidate’s polished appearance and make sure I was at least remembered by the interviewer, for better or worse.

Quite often, even if I wasn’t originally offered a role, I would receive a call 1, 3, 6 months down the line by the interviewer for another role they had to fill.


Frank Ray

Ask any project manager about the key to their success, and they will say that delivering a project is often more like a "dark art" or by chance, than a predictable science.

They may also say that a project going 'off the rails' was one of the most stressful things they have professionally experienced. And unfortunately, it’s all too common.

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