9.05.2005

TIP: Be yourself, Goldilocks style

In the children's story, "Goldilocks and the Three Bears," Goldilocks always makes the "middle" of three choices. Like, in beds, "'this one's too hard; this one's too soft; this one's just right,' so she slept in it." (Same for hot/cold porridge, and other things she found in the bears' house.)

Similar trade-off occurs in job interviews as well: should an interview be a great act, a completely candid and spontaneous exchange, or something in between? With too little acting, one may nail all the answers, but still fail to click with the interviewer.

With too much acting, one can easily act himself out of a job. In an effort to put their best foot forward, some try to put on a good performance by memorizing canned answers and stories from books and articles (eg. "My greatest weakness is I work too hard.") Some try suggested strategy games and cute attention-getting tricks. Others subsribe to the idea that "If you don't have a great story to tell, borrow others or make one up." The problem is that more often than that, these same people are not even good actors.

Somewhere in the middle is a sweet spot, or Goldilocks Solution, for which performance is maximized and you are still yourself.

Category: C++ Quant > Land the Job You Want > Interview

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