On Interviews

Everyone gives the same advice to college students:

On InterviewsEveryone gives the same advice to college students:

Everyone gives the same advice to college students:

“Just try to meet as many people as you can”

I hear it all the time — but it’s really not easy.

This would be a cool place to just talk

It’s not easy to talk to people, especially new people. New people present a set of new challenges, ones that are foreign. Unknown things make a lot of people nervous.

Trace back to the nervousness — why? Well, I think…People get nervous talking to superiors: People that are more confident, more intelligent, more good looking, more athletic, and more impressive. Hell, their time is more valuable than mine. That means I have to make every word perfect.

Naturally — I should be nervous.

But what if I turned this around?

As of late I have been making a serious effort to reach out to people. Not just classmates, but also really really important people. People with years more experience working for the top companies in the world (google, Sequoia, Y Combinator, VCs and more). I get 15–30 minutes with people who have seen it all…And what do I do?


  1. Reverse: A great mentor of mine told me this: What if you found out exactly what the other person wanted to hear…Then you could answer any question — perfectly.

Ask a question that is distinct and challenging. Find out their problems before you go on about yours.

2. Confidence: Whether it’s in person or on the phone, confidence bleeds brightly. If you can know what you are talking about or, at the least, act like it, you will be better off. It is crucial to believe in what you are saying: talk about things you are passionate about — they can tell.

3. Straightforward: People “whose time is more valuable than mine” hate wasting moments. They do not want to hear buzzwords or you circumventing their solution. Come with an ask, and stick to it.

I have found that people, across the board, appreciate two things: hard-work and honesty.

Ping me — jordangonen@wustl.edu

Tagged in Startup, Tech, Blogging

By jordangonen on February 26, 2016.

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Exported from Medium on February 17, 2018.