This is the guy we hired



  • I am in shock. We actually decided to extend a candidate an offer. And we actually think he's a decent human being.

    It only took us 34 interviews, but number 34 was the guy.

    What sort of person did we extend the offer to? you ask.

    Let me start by saying that out of 34 interviews, read that 34 interviews, he was the only person to wear a suit jacket.

    I'm not saying that the others didn't wear a tie or a nice shirt. We had a couple of those. But this guy came in a complete suit. I wanted to hire the guy as soon as I saw him, he was that much of a sight for sore eyes.

    Beyond that, he was well-mannered. He said "please" and "thank you". Imagine that, someone who is courteous and gives you more than a grunt when spoken to.

    No sandals, no feet on the furniture, no drugged out stare, no ripped clothes, no visible tattoos or piercings, no "new age" spiked haircut, no bad smell, no rude dismissal of defined team objectives, no apparent apathy, no exposed chest hair, no leftover "funk" in the interview room after the candidate has walked out...did I mention no bad smell?

    As you can see, I've had more negative candidate interview experiences than positive. At a ratio of 33 to 1.

    But I am super happy and we're all going out to celebrate tonight. We all agree that if this new hire even makes the 90 day mark and doesn't leave, we'll be content. We're that happy to have him on board.
     



  • "He can't code his way out of a cardboard box.... but DAMN is he good-lookin'!"

     Just kiddin'...



  • You aren't, by any chance, working for a fashion boutique?



  • Wow, a suit, he must know his stuff then.  I notice that you didn't say a single thing about his skill set or background.

    I hope you're very happy together.

    -cw



  • The guy you've hired isn't by any chance a java wizard?



  • i think the OP's main point is that given 34 people applying for a job as part of a team, this is the only one who had both qualifications and that didn't leave a bad taste in the mouth. i won't put on a suit for an interview, but i know that it helps.

    I understand his search for someone that washes though... when did personal hygeine take a back seat to... i dunno... pennyarcade?



  • @CPound said:

    But this guy came in a complete suit.

      Hmm there's one thing I don't get about the US, it's the "dress for the interview just a bit better than would be expected for normal work". In Australia it's pretty much expected that if you go for a formal interview, you wear a suit, at least for programmers. I suspect the same is true for most professions.

     



  • @GeneWitch said:

    i think the OP's main point is that given 34 people applying for a job as part of a team, this is the only one who had both qualifications and that didn't leave a bad taste in the mouth. i won't put on a suit for an interview, but i know that it helps.

    I understand his search for someone that washes though... when did personal hygeine take a back seat to... i dunno... pennyarcade?

    Knowing some of CPound's older postings, the missing reference to the candidate's qualifications makes some of us wonder whether or not those qualifications played a role at all in the hiring process.



  • @Factory said:

    @CPound said:

    But this guy came in a complete suit.

      Hmm there's one thing I don't get about the US, it's the "dress for the interview just a bit better than would be expected for normal work". In Australia it's pretty much expected that if you go for a formal interview, you wear a suit, at least for programmers. I suspect the same is true for most professions.

     

    Where I'm at wearing a suit for a programmer position is standard practice.  Maybe its because I'm in the Mid-Atlantic region and we tend to be more conservative business wise.  The US is a big country and each region has its own cultural idiosyncrasies.



  • @lpope187 said:

    @Factory said:

    @CPound said:

    But this guy came in a complete suit.

      Hmm there's one thing I don't get about the US, it's the "dress for the interview just a bit better than would be expected for normal work". In Australia it's pretty much expected that if you go for a formal interview, you wear a suit, at least for programmers. I suspect the same is true for most professions.

     

    Where I'm at wearing a suit for a programmer position is standard practice.  Maybe its because I'm in the Mid-Atlantic region and we tend to be more conservative business wise.  The US is a big country and each region has its own cultural idiosyncrasies.

    would you have invested?

    I think this goes to show a couple of things about what CPound is sayin.

    Hmmmmm...



  • @GeneWitch said:

    would you have invested?

    Is that Mr. Gumby I see in the top left corner? 



  • @CodeWhisperer said:

    Wow, a suit, he must know his stuff then.  I notice that you didn't say a single thing about his skill set or background.

    His resume looked adequate enough. And you may laugh about it, but he does have a solid Java background. Java and PHP. And based on how he presented himself in the interview, he came across as very intelligent and willing (and able) to pick up new technologies. Like .NET 3.0. Overall, he looks like a solid hire.

    @CodeWhisperer said:

    I hope you're very happy together.

    I hope so too. Like I said before, if he makes it to the 90-day mark, it will all have been worth it. 



  • But did you ask him who his favorite person in history was?

    🙂



  • @GeneWitch said:

    i won't put on a suit for an interview, but i know that it helps.

    I would highly recommend that everyone wear a suit to an interview.

    It's one thing if it's your second interview with a company, and you decide to dress a little more casually. But, if it's your first dealings with a company, always suit up.

    In my experience, not suiting up means points against you at the outset. Why would you want to start an interview process already in the negative? That means you better be Ultra-Candidate from Programmer World in order to overcome that initial deficiency.

    Comments like "I won't put on a suit for an interview" just make me cringe. Why not? Do you not own a suit? As a highly paid programmer, you should have the funds to buy one. And it's only for the morning or afternoon. It's not like you have to wear it all day! I don't see what the big deal is about dressing nicely and not smelling...at least for a couple hours. If you want to scratch your butt and wade in filth after the fact, go right on ahead. You can wallow in slop at home. Just don't bring that stuff to the interview room.



  • @CPound said:

     As a highly paid programmer, you should have the funds to buy one.

    I'm a psych student about to take GREs... not a 'highly paid programmer'

     

    ...yet.



  • @CPound said:

    In my experience, not suiting up means points against you at the outset. Why would you want to start an interview process already in the negative? That means you better be Ultra-Candidate from Programmer World in order to overcome that initial deficiency.

    Comments like "I won't put on a suit for an interview" just make me cringe. Why not? Do you not own a suit? As a highly paid programmer, you should have the funds to buy one. And it's only for the morning or afternoon. It's not like you have to wear it all day! I don't see what the big deal is about dressing nicely and not smelling...at least for a couple hours. If you want to scratch your butt and wade in filth after the fact, go right on ahead. You can wallow in slop at home. Just don't bring that stuff to the interview room.

    When I go to an interview, I'm not just there to be interviewed, I'm also there to judge the company as a prospective employer. Part of this is a large number of minor tests about their attitude. One of those is whether they judge things based on appearances, or whether they can manage to overcome their instincts and judge based on what is best for them. People who can see past the absence of a suit will make better employers for an engineer, because it means they're used to actually thinking rather than just reacting.

    If you mark somebody down because of what they're wearing, for a non-customer-facing position, then in my book you are starting out in the negative.

    Another way you can lose points is by failing to ask why I'm not wearing a suit (because that means you're more concerned about avoiding giving offence than you are about finding the best result).



  • @asuffield said:

    If you mark somebody down because of what they're wearing, for a non-customer-facing position, then in my book you are starting out in the negative.

    I am astounded at the response I've received regarding the whole "wear a suit" issue.

    Didn't any of you go to college? And didn't anyone tell you during your senior year that you would have interviews and it would be best that you wore a suit? Why is this such a foreign concept to all of you?!? It was standard practice for me.

    I find it hard to believe that times have changed so much that candidates are supposed to waltz in the door wearing their pajamas and unkempt hair.

    And in reference to your "non-customer-facing position" comment...first of all, you are always in a customer facing position. Whether you are serving your external customers (clients) or your internal customers (co-workers, other departments, etc.) you are always facing a customer of some sort. Secondly, how do you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the position won't require you to dress up in some way? You don't. There's no possible way. Even if you know gobs of information about the position, there's no way you can know all the ins and outs of the corporate culture. So assuming that "casual is cool" isn't smart at all.

    The only way I would come dressed casually to an interview is if the employer specifically told me to do so. Otherwise, forget it. Even if the recruiter says something like, "Oh they're casual there...just wear whatever." I'm still wearing a suit. Just in case.

    I would rather look like a gentleman and be out of place, than look like a street vagrant and be an eye sore to the interviewer.
     



  • @CPound said:

    @asuffield said:

    If you mark somebody down because of what they're wearing, for a non-customer-facing position, then in my book you are starting out in the negative.

    I am astounded at the response I've received regarding the whole "wear a suit" issue.

    Didn't any of you go to college? And didn't anyone tell you during your senior year that you would have interviews and it would be best that you wore a suit? Why is this such a foreign concept to all of you?!? It was standard practice for me.

    Perhaps you shouldn't assume it is the same in all cultures. 



  • @CPound said:

    no visible tattoos or piercings, no "new age" spiked haircut,

     

    Hey CPound, i think you're cutting out quite a few good programmers there.  I think you might be the one with the issue.  Granted i wear suits to a formal interview but not take out my piercings, in an interview you're as much interviewing the company as they are you.  If it was an issue at that company i wouldn't want to work there anyway and if they wanted me to wear a suit every day even on days when i wasn't meeting with clients i'd just tell them thanks for their time and not to bother calling me, there are just as many companies that don't have those sort of policies.  Here in AU things are fairly informal dress wise for programmers, but you would wear a suit to the interview.  I'd be very careful about hiring someone just based on them wearing a suit though, anyone can wear a suit but not everyone can program.

     

    I do know what you mean about bad interviewees though i was doing interviews for a graduate position at my company a couple of weeks ago.  I know exactly what you mean about the grunting response, some of the guys seemed like they didn't even want jobs(although they all wore suits).  We also had the interviewees sit a small exam after the interview, some were so bad they didn't make it that far, but the thing that shocked me most out of the 16 people we had sit the exam 1 yes that's right 1 got the following question correct(not the exact text):

    What port does a webserver run on by default?
     

    we hired the one guy that got it right



  • Aren't you like 24 or something?

    In '91 -- when I was about that age -- I had an interview with a gov't agency who was looking for a developer.  It was a panel interview with 5 different people tossing questions at me and a computer in the corner where I had to do what ended up being some fairly basic DOS stuff while they watched.

    I came to the interview in a nice pair of slacks, long sleeve shirt but no tie.  This was a fairly arid climate and with summer temps up in the 90 degree range, I decided to eschew a jacket and tie.  Toward the end of the interview someone gestured toward my neck, clearly indicating the lack of a tie.  They asked, "if you were hired, is this how you would come to work?"  I responded, with the flippancy for which I was known when I was younger, "That depends, are you hiring me for my programming skill or my fashion sense?".   I immediately regretted the response, but that was that.  I was thanked for my time and left.

    I got the job.

    I've been offered most every job I've interviewed for since, with mom-and-pop shops and the largest companies in the world.   In each, I wear comfortable but nice clothes.  Perhaps the jobs I didn't get were because I failed to wear a suit...but if that's the case, it hasn't held my career back one bit.

    Correspondingly, I have come to not care a lot about what people wear.  If they wear a suit, good for them; I hope it fits well and they don't look like they are super uncomfortable.  When I lived in the desert, people even arrived in shorts and sandals...and got jobs.  Some people who showed up in suits didn't...some did.   That's not what they are being judged on.  But you already know what my interviews are like, a suit won't help you through them.

    You're perfectly within your right to judge your candidates on any criteria you see fit.  Folks with red hair get jobs automatically, people with black hair don't.  Fine.  But it doesn't really seem like a recipe for long term success if you're only aiming 90 days out.

    -cw


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