Background and resume

One common question that a lot of interviewers start with is “Tell me about yourself”. You should come up with an under-a-minute answer and practice it beforehand. Your answer should be both personal (you’re you and nobody else) and professional (why you’re a good fit for the role). Your answer might guide the rest of the interview.

Interviewers might also test your general level of expertise with the question: “What level of involvement have you had with [ML|computer vision|natural language processing|etc.]?” Don’t bluff. If you pretend that you’re more experienced than you actually are, the interviewer will find out.

Companies will want to know about your career history. They will probably ask about your educational background, your previous jobs, and your past projects. You should highlight two things. One is the decisions you made at each position that had an impact, both positive and negative. Another is why you decided to leave one company to join the next.

The interviewer will try to see if you’ve done what you claim on your resume. If you have, how much ownership you took. It’s pretty easy to spot the talkers from the doers just by asking for details. They might pick up one project from your resume and make you explain every choice you made in it. If you claim to be familiar with TensorFlow, be prepared to talk about eager execution, tf.estimator, and distributed training in TensorFlow.

Employers will of course want to know about your current job search: why are you looking and what are you looking for. A question that every company asks is whether you have any impending offer/deadline that they should be aware of. Some candidates feel awkward to admit that they don’t have any offer yet for fear that the company will think less of them. Some resort to lying, telling recruiters that they have impending onsites or offers when they don’t.

You might be able to get away with it -- some even argue that since companies regularly take advantage of their users and employees, we have no ethical obligation to be honest with them. However, it’s a slippery slope. I wouldn’t want to be the person who lies to get ahead, but it’s a personal decision each of us has to make for ourselves.

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