Bessy Tam, Author at Life In Tech by Bessy Tam

All Posts by Bessy Tam

How I Got Into Tech (Google) As a Marketer in 3 Simple Steps

Whether you’re working in an agency, in-house marketing department, or freelancing, it's not easy being a marketer.

You probably stepped into marketing thinking the job would entail creating sexy creative campaigns like Don Draper in the TV show Mad Men. Instead, you’re investing long hours into projects that, at times, can feel unimportant and undervalued.

I know how you feel.

I attended a small business school with a concentration in marketing, interned at a global marketing agency, and worked for an in-house marketing department. After a few years in the industry, I realized I wasn’t learning anymore nor had any interest in climbing the corporate marketing ladder.

That is when I decided to make a career change and get into tech.

Step 1: Deciding to Get into Tech

What initially attracted me to the tech industry was its innovative and collaborative culture. After transitioning to a role at Google, I can sum up a few of my favorite benefits below:

#1 Scale, Impact, and Performance-Focus

As a marketer, your impact is limited to constraints of the business. This includes the scale of the business, scope of your role, as well as leadership's desire to expand marketing efforts. In tech, you often have a wider variety of products and services, the potential for a global footprint, wider customer base, and a hungry appetite from leadership to innovate and grow. As long as your efforts provide a strong return on investment, you'll be able to grow your project with scale and flexibility.

#2 Internal Mobility

In my 6+ years at Google, I've travelled to 9+ countries for work and managed side projects across 7+ areas of expertise including diversity and inclusion, product management, sales, measurement & analytics, and internal tool development. These projects not only allowed me to continuously feel challenged at work but also helped me discover my true passions in product management. Because working in tech gave me exposure to so many areas of the business, I was able to relocate from Hong Kong to the US and change teams from Account Management to Global Product Leadership, where I am today. 

#3 Fast-Paced Environment

In my past marketing experience, larger teams and complex organizations made it hard to get visibility or move projects along more quickly. At Google, I've never worked with a direct team of more than 2-3 people. The business evolved quickly so there are always new challenges and things to learn. This environment makes work exciting and meaningful since I’ve been able to start and lead my own projects with cross-functional teams to solve problems.

#4 Compensation and Promotions

Your base salary isn't the only form of compensation in tech. Common forms of compensation could also include gifted stocks, employer-matched 401k contributions, company bonuses, relocation bonuses, sign-on bonuses, performance bonuses, and performance-based promotions. I’ve frequently received peer-nominated, manager-nominated, and referral bonuses too which shows how tech companies support not only a collaborative environment, but also performance-based rewards. In return, I'm constantly focused on driving impact for my company and teammates.

#5 a Test and Learn Mindset

As a marketer, I was often repeating campaigns and planning processes based on what previous teams did instead of focusing on innovation. In tech, I'm able to guide and implement test and learn strategies, including launching test products or creating a/b experiments. This mindset allows me to comfortably and confidently make decisions without the fear of failure while ensuring teammates are always open to new ideas and willing to collaborate.

Step 2: “OK Google,” you've sold me, where can I start?

When I transitioned from marketing into tech, I landed a role in account management as a way to get my ‘foot in the door’ . I also wanted to work with clients and enjoyed the performance-focused culture. 
Generally, there are 5 possible roles that marketers can aim to interview for:

#1 Account Management

Account management includes roles and titles such as Account Manager, Account Executive, Campaign Manager, Client Solution Manager, and Customer Success Manager. These roles help businesses invest more in the company’s technology while making the most out of its product features. Account Management can include individually managing a portfolio of smaller sized businesses or a few larger businesses together with a small account team. These roles are widely available in the industry and are great for people who have experience pitching internal stakeholders to adopt, use, and host company-wide trainings for the software tech companies create.

#2 New Business Sales

Sales is similar to account management but instead of working with existing clients, you hunt for new business. Titles can vary between companies including Business Development Representative, Account Executive, Client Sales, and New Business Sales. Sales roles are great for anyone who is driven by individual performance and the potential income benefits of a commission-based compensation plan.

#3 Product Marketing Management

Product marketing works with product and sales teams to ensure products are promoted and positioned well for both the business and customers to drive growth. Business growth could mean acquiring new customers, whether across consumers or small medium businesses. It could also mean maintaining loyalty among current large clients, corporate partners, or frequent users. No matter the goal, this role is great for anyone who has experience in building scalable campaigns, loves using data to drive decision making, and enjoys managing projects with internal stakeholders.

#4 Marketing Analytics

Marketing analytics works with marketing stakeholders and strategy teams to evaluate marketing channels, develop models and tools to direct marketing strategy, and present meaningful insights to stakeholders. This role is great for anyone who has strong analytical experience, likes working with large data sets, and enjoys developing forecasts to inform marketing decisions that drive business growth.

#5 Customer Insights and Research

Customer insight teams gather qualitative and quantitative data about users to help internal stakeholders make better decisions about a product’s marketing positioning. Customer insight roles are great for anyone who has market research experience, loves telling stories with consumer insights, and enjoys influencing internal or external stakeholders. Be wary of confusing this role with user experience (UX) insights roles as these tend to require more of a technical background.
After I understood the possible roles in tech, the next step was to identify the right experiences that I could bring to the table to kickstart my job search.

Step 3: Tailoring Your Job Search and Land the Tech Offer

Choose the Right Role

Many people think that you need technical experience in order to get into tech. In fact, Glassdoor states that 43% of open tech roles they’ve seen on their platform are non-technical. So instead of focusing on gaining technical experience, it’s important to lean on existing experiences across your industry, business, and role.

Industry experience and knowledge is really important in tech. In your job search, you can use your clients’ industries in your marketing agency or your employer’s industry to inform either the type of clients you could manage in tech as an account manager or the type of tech company you could target for your next job as an in-house marketer.

A second area of expertise you could lean on is your business experience. If you’ve used specific software platforms in the past, such as cloud, CRM, ads, or email management, you could transition into the tech company or team that built those platforms. In addition, if you’ve marketed for different either physical or online products and B2C or B2B markets, you could transition into managing clients or working in tech companies that have similar products and customers. This way, you can align your expertise to marketing experiences these tech companies may be looking for. For example, since I worked in the airline and education industries in the past which are physical and B2C markets, I was able use this experience to transition into Google to manage consumer banking and government trade show clients.

Lastly, the job search process can be overwhelming when you see so many roles and titles in the tech industry and are not sure what they mean. Leveraging your past experience could allow you to either align your current job title to the same title within tech such as marketing manager and data analyst, or translate the day-to-day responsibilities of your current job into a completely different title within tech. 

Adapt Your Resume

The Ladders conducted a resume eye-tracking study in 2018. The study showed that hiring managers and recruiters only spent an average of 7.4 seconds reading a resume.

That's why it is important to tailor your resume not only to ensure it’s easy to read but also is supported with data-driven impact numbers. When I adapted my resume to tech, I honed in on my achievements, added key results, linked examples of my work, formatted the resume clearly, and aligned my content to the role I was applying for.

Before adapting my resume, I spent 10 months passively applying to 108 jobs without hearing back from any of them. Once I tailored my resume with this approach, I was able to land two offers from tech companies within two weeks.

Set Up Informal Chats

In his book “Work Rules!”, Lazlo Bock, Google’s former President of People Operations, mentioned that the company receives 2 million applications each year. Since there is such a large number of applications, hiring teams will often focus on internal candidates and employee referrals before even looking at the hundreds or thousands of online applications. This is why setting up conversations outside of formal interviews with employees in your target company, especially on the hiring team, is a great way to “cut the line” among applicants. 

In order to find people to chat with, you can connect with people on Linkedin, ask for connections within your network, or even reach out to alumni from your school’s directory.

Before adjusting my job search approach to tech, I would passively apply to companies like Google and immediately receive a rejection. After realizing my mistake, I set up informal chats with someone who had recently left the hiring team to understand exactly what they were looking for, what challenges their business and team were facing, and how the role ladders up to the team’s success. Additionally, I got a referral that let me “cut the line” among applicants. During interviews, I was able to tailor my answers based on the information I learned from my informal chats and was able to land a final offer among 50+ other candidates.

Prepare for Behavioral Interviews

The tech industry is known for conducting behavioral interviews that seem unpredictable and difficult to prepare for. Behavioral questions focus on hypothetical situations or example experiences from the past that look to demonstrate leadership, problem solving, culture fit, and role-related knowledge. Many companies like Amazon have other traits they look for, but these four are most commonly seen among tech companies.
When applying to my first role with Google, In order to tackle behavioral questions during my interviews, I not only made sure to tailor my answers based on my informal chats, but also worked to frame my answers in a clear and concise way.

There are two frameworks that I use: one is the 1-2-3 method and one is the STAR method: 

  • The 1-2-3 method is a framework where you answer with “first...second.. third…” when asked to explain your approach to a hypothetical situation or reasonings to a question. Having three concise points makes it easy for interviewers to follow your answer. For example, I would use this method on questions such as "why do you want to join this company?" or "how would you upsell a client who did not see value in the product?" 
  • The STAR method helps frame answers that explain your approach to a past experience or situation. The word STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. I would use this method for questions such as "Tell me about a time when you led a project" or "Tell me about a time when you failed.”

Lastly, I always worked to keep the length of my answers between 30 seconds to 1.5 minutes. This way I could ensure the interviewers were following my example stories and made sure I had time to ask questions at the end of the interview so I could learn more about the role.

Comparing my interviews before and after I used these frameworks, I could tell that the interviewers were much more engaged - I noticed that they were enjoying the conversations. If you want to learn more about the structure and examples, download my Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here with 43+ top interview questions

Next Steps for You

While it seems like there's a lot of work to do to choose the right role and company, set up informal chats, prepare examples of your experiences for interviews, and tailor your job search to tech, I’ve seen first-hand how this process lands people their dream tech jobs.

If you're really passionate about making a change, I assure you that it is worth the effort and that you can do it. You'll just need to take the first step!

Applying to tech companies but
getting crickets? I’ve been there!

Get the FREE 7-day email course to understand:

  • Is Tech Even Right For You?
  • What Your Natural Entry Point Could Be in Tech (includes a comprehensive worksheet)
  • The Top 5 Mistakes You’re Making Right Now
  • The Resume Revamp Checklist
  • Top Questions to Expect in a Tech Interview and How to Tackle Them
  • Tips and Tricks to Negotiate What You Want in the Interview Process

BONUS the exact resume I used to get a 100% interview to offer rate!

No Thanks

Copyright © 2018 | BessyTam.com with Bessy Tam

Leaving Academia: A Surprising Career for Scientists – Jasmin’s Story

Jasmin was on the PHD track as a neuroscience but didn’t enjoy her career because she:

  • Couldn’t see the direct impact of her work
  • Was contributing to someone else’s work instead of her own
  • Lived on a PHD / Academia paycheck in New York, away from her family in California
  • Didn’t want to be stuck in one industry and path

She found Bessy through a post on Tech Ladies in a Facebook group, and immediately jumped on the opportunity to have a free strategy call. The rest was history

They worked together in Bessy’s “Resume Revamp & Right Role Program” to:

  • Debunk all the myths out there: making sure Jasmin wasn't applying to 100+ jobs a week and reading dozens of articles a day
  •  Translate her academia background into relevant experiences and terminologies
  • Focus on her existing skillsets instead of getting new certifications or degrees under her belt
  • Set her goals and ideal work environment
  •  Network with people the right way that actually gave her results (instead of reaching out to hundreds of people and not hearing back)
  •  Choose the right role
  • Create a system that Jasmin could exactly track her input and results instead of blindly sending resumes into a black hole

In the end, she was able to land a dream job in DoorDash as a Launch Operations Specialist in the New Verticals Industry.

With this dream job, Jasmin is also able to: 

  • Successfully land this dream job during COVID-19
  • Be in a team with a manager whom she loves and respects
  • Move back to California from New York, closer to her family
  • Grow her technical and data skillsets through coworkers in this dream company
  • Get a better work life balance
  • Be in a dream company where she sees herself growing in for 4+ years
  • Be in a dream company that support internal mobility, allowing her to eventually moving into the Product Management and/or Robotics arms too, truly leveraging her academia, data, and neuroscience background 

Want to hear more? I'll leave it to Jasmin to tell you her experience

Challenges

I'm Jasmin, and around early, mid 2019, I realized I wanted to branch out of my then job as a researcher in a neuroscience lab, and to explore other venues outside of the industry. The main problem was that I had been doing neuroscience in my internships and as a main job for years.

I have never like explored or thought about exploring any other industries until I felt the pressure to change.


What I've Tried

Initially, when I tried making that pivot, I did the traditional work of trying to apply to an upwards of 15 applications per day, having a main cover letter and refining it to fit the goals and needs of the company.

Then I was just waiting for a response from this.

 I was able to land a couple of interviews, but I could never go to the final round, which is troubling because the hiring managers at the interviews would often like, you know, tell me that they're, they're very impressed with the work and they're very, they're happy to see me there, but I couldn't tell if that was sugarcoating or if they really wanted me there.

So then the problem became, "how do I understand who my competitors are and how my skills land in relation to those competitors?"

At the time, I was also trying to do coffee chats, but they were very unguided and they didn't lead up to a long-term relationship. 

How Jasmin Found Bessy

And then suddenly I looked through tech ladies, which is a form on Facebook, and that's where I found Bessy Tam's post of like advertising her coaching skills.

 I've seen a lot of coaches post their work on tech ladies before, but the reason why Bessy is so different is because she was actually advertising one for articles that broadcasted the strategy that she encourages people to use.

Working with Bessy - Resume Revamp & Role Fit

The biggest change was focusing on a core set of companies and increasing my reach outs to understand that initial problem of where new, my current skills lay in contrast to other competitors.

But by keeping that number low, I was able to like dig deeper and really evaluate the true currency of the culture fit.

I think once I branched out beyond my neuroscience in domain industry or  domain knowledge, that's when I got more positive response.

Through Bessy, I was able to actually  work through an Excel spreadsheet to log in my hours and hold myself accountable. 

I think what Bessy does is reminding me to stay on track or  forcing me to stay on track. I think I have a habit of thinking about  how glittery a potential idea is, and then I'll get carried away.

But she reminds me , "does this align with your goals or is this just another fluffy idea that you want to pursue?"

The initial write-ups where we wrote out our goals and what the top three priorities are, was my saving grace throughout this process,. 

Having those priorities written down that gave me the confidence to go towards companies that are more aligned with my own personal goals.

Working with Bessy - Having an Open "Partner in Crime"

It was really helpful to have someone who's a professional. Who's also a woman who was also like an immigrant.

I think being able to be vulnerable with Bessy and just to state out my mistakes in front of her allowed me to understand, what's the more polished version of me that I should aim towards to be?

I had such a hard time giving up my research language and my specific niche jargon to relay that information to other people. So that's why I would often go back to Bessy and ask, "okay, is this language the language that you use accessible for all people? Does it showcase the impact that I made?"

It  forced me to narrow down my words within one sentence to make it stand out. I

Working with Bessy - Getting "Insider Secrets" & Networking the Right Way

Doing the resume with somebody else is really helpful because you're able to think outside of your head, it really ended up being like the blueprint.

I realized like certain companies have certain roles that they add as needed. And then there are other companies that routinely open up their roles every year.

Understanding how other companies are planning things out helped.

Bessy gave me an outreach script to network, and this script helped me to prepare for my informal chats or coffee chats by structuring what to research for. It guided me to jot down three things that the person I'm meeting have done. 

This helped me so much because it helps you have a log of, "do I want to keep targeting the same types of professionals or do I want to shake things up?"

This process is like riding a bike, in the beginning it's like using training wheels when I used the script. Then once I became more competent, I would still fill out a script before each chat.

But then I just looked at that script as a reference and it allowed me to build more rapport with the person I reach out to build back and forth.

This is something like, I never knew how to do in college. Like in my undergrad experience, people only went to medical school or graduate school. And literally that's it. 

I think the sad thing about science is that there is no pipeline to make you understand how science can fit your career. And like science can go so many different ways.

Landing her Dream Job

Landing the offer at DoorDash - it really aligns with my future. The reason why I left science is because I wanted to understand how science can be translated beyond paper publishing.

And that's where I eventually want to be.

I want to  have a firsthand experience of seeing how engineers and scientists work to scale ideas out. That's something that's more tangible than like theory and like writing papers.

 I can finally say I'm in the exact spot that I wanted to be in and that I did not compromise my goals.

It took a huge leap of faith. I never thought I would be this aligned and  I'm happy that I have a space to grow in.

 I'm very, very excited. And  I feel like I can imagine myself about this company for years to come. I don't feel like I have a foot out the door. So I think that's like the true test of success.

Who would you recommend this program to?

This is really good for people in science. I think it's incredible for people in science. It's a full 180 degrees.

Even though I've had to like change the way I speak, I don't think I've compromised and lost my previous scientific method.

I think it's good for people who have only stayed within  primary industry for years and don't know how to make that pivot.

I don't think this just needs to be for young people. I think it's for people who are in their thirties and their forties as well, if you're scared of not knowing what your worth is and not knowing how to like get to the position you where you need to be.

Applying to tech companies but
getting crickets? I’ve been there!

Get the FREE 7-day email course to understand:

  • Is Tech Even Right For You?
  • What Your Natural Entry Point Could Be in Tech (includes a comprehensive worksheet)
  • The Top 5 Mistakes You’re Making Right Now
  • The Resume Revamp Checklist
  • Top Questions to Expect in a Tech Interview and How to Tackle Them
  • Tips and Tricks to Negotiate What You Want in the Interview Process

BONUS the exact resume I used to get a 100% interview to offer rate!

No Thanks

Copyright © 2018 | BessyTam.com with Bessy Tam

How to Prepare for Interviews (Part 2 of 5): Researching Your Interviewers (w/ Live Client Call)

So today we'll be talking about part 2 of the 5-part series, how to prepare for interviews.

And today we'll be talking about how to research interviewers in order to:

  1. bring up the right experiences
  2. understand what they're looking for in an ideal candidate
  3. and build rapport with them to have an natural conversation so that it doesn't seem very forced. 

In this video, we'll be talking about 3 key strategies when it comes to researching or preparing for interviews

I'll also have a video from a live client call that I had with one my readers, to show you exactly how I would approach it. 

If you're interested in learning more about how to best prepare for interviews (especially for behavioral questions) and what to expect for interviews with 43+ real example questions, then feel free to subscribe and get the 25-pg Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here for free!

3  Strategies to Research Your Interviewers

#1 Topics to "Chit-Chat"

So the first portion is researching topics to chit chat.

This is the first 5 to 15 minutes of your 30 to 45 minute interview.

This is super important because it allows you to:

  • establish rapport
  •  build a strong foundation that levels both of you
  • and allows you to have a two way conversation instead of a one way intimidating one.

This is something I learned in the book, how to win friends and influence people. 

And so how do you actually do this? You want to look at three things:

First is their LinkedIn or their professional profile.

It allows you to understand who do they follow? How do they talk about themselves or their work? These are things that you can check out in their activity as well.

Things you can look for:

  1. other companies they came from
  2. number of years they worked in their current company
  3. pages/companies they follow
  4. school they went to
  5. places they've been (look at the location for different jobs they had & schools they've attended)
  6. languages they speak
  7. email or how they describe their work - search for "keywords" eg. "data driven", "reliable", "product", "marketing". This is their "self identity"
  8. college subjects or major/minors
  9. interactions with other people under "See all activity" - who are those people, what are their roles?
  10. Their "story line" how they've transitioned from different companies and what that tells you (what was a transitional point? what is still a recurring theme?)

Secondly, you want to search them online

Secondly, you want to search them online to look at articles that have mentioned them, or, you know, articles that they have written themselves in their own blog.

You are definitely able to bring these up and say, "Hey, I've seen that you were mentioned by X, Y, Z article. I thought it was really cool." It's  natural to be researching interviewers anyway, so you want to bring these up to show that you've done your homework 

Lastly, you want to search for their social media

You don't want to specifically mention you saw on their Facebook that they have a cat or have a dog, but maybe during interviews you can mention, "Hey, we're working from home. Do you have any pets?"Or "Where was the last place you visited" (if they like to travel) or "what's your favorite restaurant?" (if they enjoy trying different foods).

You can bring up anything you've seen during your research on a high level that's very lighthearted. This way, you can redirect the conversation to make sure the topics are relevant to them like a friend

The key thing is not to rush the chit-chat part. 

As a next step, grab your notebook that you'll bring to the interview to take notes on. Write out their name, the time of the interview, their role, and also 3 things that you notice that they're interested in.

These points can include  food, travel, or countries they are from.

#2 Their Role

Secondly, you want to look at their role and how it relates to your target role that you're interviewing for.

This is super important, because you want to understand:

  • What's in it for them?
  • Why do they care about the success of this role?
  • How does this ladder up to their success?

First, you want to look at their role

What do they do? How do they describe their role and how does it relate to the wider company structure?

If they're a high level of director, obviously they care about the growth of the team, depending on different roles that they manage within the company.

Second, you want to look at their description:

  •  how they described their role, what kind of impact they're bringing to the company? Is it sales? Is it revenue?
  • What kind of metrics they care about?
  • How does that actually ladder up to your role?

You know, if it's a hiring manager, how many team members do they have? What are their targets? How does your role solve their challenges?

This comes to the third portion, which is something that I addressed in part one. If you haven't seen the video in part 1 and feel free to do so, but it's something I call it informal chats or coffee chats. 

Third, research their team (through calls)

You have to be able to chat with other people within the company and ask them about  the interviewers

You can circle back to people you've talked to and ask questions like:

  • have you heard anything about them?
  • Do you know anything about them?
  • Have you worked with them?
  • What do they care about, etc

Because you've already done the homework in Part 1 of the Interview Preparation with the informal chats, you are able to circle back to them.

Even one informal chat will be able to influence your wider interview strategy


#3 Anticipate Interview Questions

Last but not least, you want to look at questions or categories that they're going to be asking in a panel of 3-5 interviewers.

They will each have generally 1-2 categories that they're looking for, or they're going to ask about:

  • leadership
  •  problem solving
  • role related responsibilities
  • and culture fit.

If somebody comes from a finance background and jumped into this company before knowing this in your LinkedIn research, you'd be able to address, "Hey, they actually have a finance background, maybe I'll need to double down on my numbers and data points for this person when I answer their questions."

If somebody is a director or a higher-level person, they might actually care more about the strategy, asking you questions such as:

  •  What is your vision for the product roadmap?
  • What are the wider challenges or industry trends that you're seeing

Questions from directors and VPs are a lot more macro.

Now this type of research  also comes with the other side of things which is: What kind of questions do you want to ask them?

 Generally, I go with the rule of thumb of these 3:

  1.  What is your challenges when it comes to this company and what you're looking at?
  2. what is your vision for this team and company and how does my role ladder up to that?
  3. What is your ideal candidate? And is there anything missing from my experiences that would stop me from being a good candidate?

So these are three main questions that I would ask. If you know their deep industry background because of your research, you can ask deeper questions such as "How has your experience in XYZ company evolved and changed your perspective in this industry that helped you succeed in your current role?"

Because you've done this research, you're able to dig deeper into questions that they may or may not expect.

If you want to get real examples of how I would approach this interview prep, feel free to check out the video where I go through a live research call with one of my clients.

If you want to kick start your interview prep journey, I have my Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here to show you exactly the top strategies and 43 specific questions that are commonly asked within interviews.

Want to learn more about how to ace interviews in tech? Download the free guide below

Let me know in the comments below or in the video, how this article and strategy has helped you answer "Why do you want to join this company?" well. Even better, tell me how its helped you ace your interview or land your dream job!

Want to know the SECRETS to acing interviews in tech?

Download this FREE 23-Page Ultimate Interview Prep Guide

to Master Non-Technical Interviews

  • What To Expect in Tech Interviews?
  • How to Best Prepare for Behavioral Interviews
  • The Top 5 Interview Prep Strategies to Land Jobs at LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Startups
  • 43 Interview Real Questions my Clients Got that you MUST Prepare for!

Breaking into Tech from a Traditional Media and Publishing Background

Annie didn't even know where to start or how to figure out what role and companies were the right fit for her

She had trouble translating her experiences into tech, she’s worked in multiple industries and roles in her career, including a small business that she started with her sister.

She didn’t know:

  • What was out there
  • What jobs she should be looking at given her background
  • What a “good” resume or interview looked like (she never really applied for a job before)
  • What job was the right fit
  • nor what skills from her experiences were relevant. 

Her job search ended up being very vague and didn't know where she wanted to go, she just knew she wanted to get into tech

She even tried working with other coaches before but they were too generic and weren't as focused.

So she needed my help to understand how to approach the job search, given I have broken into tech from a traditional background and have helped other clients do the same.

We worked together in my All-In-One program, starting with the Resume Revamp and Choosing the Right Role process; identifying that account management or customer service would be a great fit for her.

Second, we were able to align on some of the key projects at her job, to make sure that she could get the right skill sets or projects to support her resume.

Lastly, when she got interviews after doing outreach, we were able to support her interview process by outreaching to the right people in the specific roles and learning more about how the role and music industry worked.

In the end, she was able to get a customer service representative role from Musiio and got everything that she wanted!

  • A role in customer service
  • Transition into tech to the music industry, something she was passionate about
  • Move to Singapore from Hong Kong to have more opportunities and exposure in the tech space
  • Negotiate a higher salary

Without further ado, here’s Annie sharing her story in her own words:

Challenges

I was at a point in my career where I’ve had other jobs, but my background seemed all over the place. There was no real selling point or storyline to show what I've done in my career or what I can do for others. 

And my job search didn't work because I also kept switching to different industries. The roles or titles in my resume didn't have any consistent story. So I didn’t know what roles to go for, or what was the right fit for me.

"I kept switching to different industries. The roles or titles in my resume didn't have any consistent story. So I didn’t know what roles to go for, or what was the right fit for me."

I found Bessy through a friend who recommended her saying that she had actually made the jump herself into a tech company, which is exactly what I had been wanting.

Bessy is different because her work and message is very specific, “You might not work in a tech company now, but I'm going to help you get to one.” 

What I've Tried

And I tried working with other coaches before but they were very generic. And so it didn't do much for me or give me the results that I wanted because it wasn't as focused.

Working with Bessy - Resume Revamp and Role Fit

Bessy helped me understand my goals and broke down the challenge. A lot of the process had to do with her deep understanding of the tech industry and matching that with the specifics of what I had done before.

By flushing them out, Bessy was able to select exactly what experiences are needed to be brought forth. And it made very clear and apparent for future employers to look at.
 

"Bessy was able to select exactly what experiences are needed to be brought forth. And it made very clear and apparent for future employers to look at."

This Resume Revamp process probably two sessions alone with her.

Working with Bessy allowed me to see what I did that would be helpful to any kind of tech company and the specific roles.

Because Bessy knows the tech industry well and she also knew the roles that my experiences were leaning towards, Bessy was able to give really good and specific advice on:

  •  the things that I needed regarding skills
  • how to build up those skills
  • what specifically to ask for or work towards in a role or expanding my current role

The Role fit and Resume helped me get a thought on what I needed to be doing, not just what I can present to other people.

Working with Bessy - Outreach Strategy

Bessy suggested using an outreach strategy to talk to people, get a feel for the roles that I wanted to apply for.

I landed a job interview and I used Bessy’s outreach strategy and reached out to a hundred people and asked the people in the roles that I was applying for: “Could you tell me more about what you're doing?”

And that helped me land the job because by the time I got to the interview with the CEO, it was very apparent that I knew what I was talking about. And I also managed to get some industry information that even the CEO didn't have since I reached out to people who were in the same industry or were even clients of the company that I was interviewing for.

"By the time I got to the interview with the CEO, it was very apparent that I knew what I was talking about. And I also managed to get some industry information that even the CEO didn't have"

Landing the Offer

So I got a final offer with this company, a Music AI company in Singapore, during COVID. It is very suited to me and my background since it's an AI company that is very much within the tech space.

This final result aligns completely to my interests because I wanted to move into a tech company. It's amazing that it's in the music industry, which is something I'm actually really interested in.

"It's amazing that it's in the music industry, which is something I'm actually really interested in."

Working with Bessy to Negotiate the Offer

Bessy knew the tech industry, knew the roles that I was leaning towards, and knew how to negotiate with people. She knew how to create conversations with people in my then company to explore “what more can I do within the company that I'm in?” and “What can I do with somebody who works in a different company?”, just to see what's out there.

When it got to the negotiation stage, I think the best advice Bessy ever gave was, “do not rush this. Slow it down as much as possible and Give yourself time to think, to ask more questions and just really be okay with everything.” Instead of just letting desperation ride me.

If everything had been rushed and done within the first week, I would've just taken the first offer. I wouldn't have reached out more. I wouldn't have thought about the offer more.

"If everything had been rushed and done within the first week, I would've just taken the first offer. I wouldn't have reached out more. I wouldn't have thought about the offer more. "

Who would you recommend this program to?

I think the service is good for anybody who is not:

  • clear about how to redo their resume
  • clear about what they want to aim for
  • sure what their skills or background would be good

Having a clear storyline on, “Hey, this is what I can do!”, makes it much easier to go for future jobs and to know what you need to focus on professionally in terms of skills as well.

I think the service is good for anybody who are unclear about that.

Future clients should expect a lot of clarity on what to aim for through Bessy’s programs. You might know that you want something different in your career or might want something better, but you might not know how to get there.

And this will help.

It's almost like therapy. You can't go in and fight or fight your counselor. Even if you're not comfortable, even if you don't like it, just do it anyway and then see what results come out of it.

Applying to tech companies but
getting crickets? I’ve been there!

Get the FREE 7-day email course to understand:

  • Is Tech Even Right For You?
  • What Your Natural Entry Point Could Be in Tech (includes a comprehensive worksheet)
  • The Top 5 Mistakes You’re Making Right Now
  • The Resume Revamp Checklist
  • Top Questions to Expect in a Tech Interview and How to Tackle Them
  • Tips and Tricks to Negotiate What You Want in the Interview Process

BONUS the exact resume I used to get a 100% interview to offer rate!

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Copyright © 2018 | BessyTam.com with Bessy Tam

How to Prepare for Interviews (Part 1 of 5): What is the hiring manager looking for?

So today we'll be talking about how to prepare for interviews, whether this comes with:

  • What are they looking for? 
  • What is the structure like?
  • Who am I working with if I get into this role
  • What relevant experiences should I bring up in the interview

In this video, we'll be talking about 3 key strategies when it comes to researching or preparing for interviews

I'll also have a video from a live call that I had with one my readers, to show you exactly how I would approach it. 

If you're interested in learning more about how to best prepare for interviews (especially for behavioral questions) and what to expect for interviews with 40+ real example questions, then feel free to subscribe and get the 25-pg Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here for free!

3  Strategies to Find Out What the Hiring Manager is Looking For

#1 Job Descriptions

First and foremost, there's this job description. So you want to be able to take out:

  • Key terminologies and keywords that they use to describe the role
  • How the role actually interacts with other people in the team, company, or externally
  • Who are the point of contacts?
  • What are the main role and responsibilities that helps you drive influence and impact within the company?

Anything that talks about impact you want to write down so that you can customize your interview answers. Here I show a screenshot of my reader in the video, who is moving from a Vendor Management/Events role in Media & Entertainment, interviewing for a Global Supply Manager role at Apple.

I've gone ahead and highlighted a few key job responsibilities

The job description generally says 1% of the day-to-day job by itself. You don't  know based on this job description who the suppliers are, how many suppliers there are, what the product strategy is, which countries the role works with, who the competitors are, what product from Apple are we covering, what seasonality may look like, the business challenges or goals of the team, etc.

This brings us to point #2


#2 LinkedIn Profiles with the Same Title

Then, you want to research using the job title and the specific company within LinkedIn profiles.

You want to look at:

  • What companies or roles they're switching coming from
  • What other roles title there may be in surrounding teams
  • What locations are relevant for the title
  • How they describe their role
  • What teams or departments there are

This way you can better understand which department they're in, how it's structured, and what the nature of the job is

You can also find common themes as you research more people with the same titles. Out of all of these people who have the same title, they actually hire a lot from these types of industries, these types of companies.

For example, In this profile, we are able to learn that:

  1. There are other titles called Strategic Sourcing Manager and Manufacturing Program Manager. These jobs may have different responsibilities but may work as a wider team. It may be worthwhile to learn more about the other titles as well
  2. There are various teams such as "DRAM GSM" and "SOC GSM" and "NPI" -
    1. GSM likely means Global Supply Manager
    2. NPI likely means New Product Innovation.
    3. Generally, additional research may help you understand what the above teams mean and how each department or unit may work with different products
  3. The scope can differ across various Apple products including memory parts, node SOCs or as this person said "Application Processor". Understanding the Apple product can allow my reader to to discover alignment and relevant experiences within their current scope (not phones but maybe fast moving, continuously innovating products that require dealing with manufacturers)
  4. People can move internationally within this company. Looks like this person moved from Korea to California
  5. A Global Supply Manager role has unique responsibilities that include negotiations, planning, managing, It will be important to highlight these relevant experiences within job interviews

While it's more comfortable to read thins online and scroll through articles, reading descriptions are not enough.

You only have 5% (at most) of the context, so this is why it's important to go through this next step.

#3 Outreaches or Setting Up Informational Conversations

Last but not least, make sure you reach out to them! I talked a lot about this in my articles, videos, and free webinars - this is my winning strategy called outreaching strategies.

To do this, you're not meant to ask them for the job or a referral, but more to learn more about their past experiences and success.

To reach yout you can say:

"Hey, I saw that you transitioned from X company to X company. I really love your journey and would love to learn more. If you're free for 15 minutes after 5:00 PM CST on Monday to Fridays, I'd love to chat more

[Name] [Phone Number]"

The outreach message within the 300 character Connection Request message on LinkedIn is lightweight, very simple, but it's also friendly.

Just like dating, you don't want to jump in and ask them to be your boyfriend or girlfriend. You want to get to know them and talk to them first.

You don't have to use up all your LinkedIn searches or get Premium at all. You can use my quick Google Search "LinkedIn Hack" to avoid the search limit and never pay for premium to find and reach out to the right people. 

It is: "Title - Company" site:linkedin.com

We just "hacking" how Google results displays Linkedin roles and responsibilities. This allows you to "go through the list"

For example, when I searched "Global Supply Manager - Apple" site:linkedin.com , there were 10 pages of results. This gives you ample people to connect with. Don't worry about their location or past experiences. The outreach message will still be a similar message. 

You can expect a 30% response rate based on this outreach method.

 So after all of this research, make sure you put this into your interview, prep doc, I actually have an Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here to show you exactly the top strategies and 43 specific questions that are commonly asked within interviews.

If you want to learn more about how I do this live, feel free to watch the YouTube Video starting at 3:00

Want to learn more about how to ace interviews in tech? Download the free guide below

Let me know in the comments below or in the video, how this article and strategy has helped you answer "Why do you want to join this company?" well. Even better, tell me how its helped you ace your interview or land your dream job!

Want to know the SECRETS to acing interviews in tech?

Download this FREE 23-Page Ultimate Interview Prep Guide

to Master Non-Technical Interviews

  • What To Expect in Tech Interviews?
  • How to Best Prepare for Behavioral Interviews
  • The Top 5 Interview Prep Strategies to Land Jobs at LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Startups
  • 43 Interview Real Questions my Clients Got that you MUST Prepare for!

2 StratOps Offers in 1 Month (COVID & Work Visa): Justin’s Testimonial

Have you ever had such a vague title that you never knew what role is the right fit in tech or even where to start?

Today I’m sharing a testimonial with you from my client, Justin.

He saw me through the #10daystotech webinars series and realized that I had many challenges getting into tech that he wanted to work with me one on one on.

He:

  • Didn’t know what role to get into given his broad background working in various roles in his current company: sales, customer service, marketing, products, operations, partnerships
  • Didn’t know what experience was relevant and how to distill this information into a resume
  • Needed a work visa and didn’t know what companies could support this
  • Wanted to be in a larger company that's still a fast growing startup just with a bit more structure and mentorship opportunities

In the end, he was able to get referred/applied to <12 roles and landed 2 offers in 1 month with my strategies; the StratOps role I identified for him, the resume we worked together on, the jobs I selected, the outreach/networking strategies, my ongoing feedback, and negotiation strategies.

He landed two offers from food and beverage tech and hospitality tech.

He chose the hospitality tech while being able to move to California, make a diagonal move to a more senior position, and continue working in the US.

Without further ado, I’ll let Justin tell his story

Feeling Discouraged? Not Knowing What You can Bring to the

Table or What You Can Really Do in Tech as a Non-Tech Person?

Download the Free Resume Revamp Guide To Learn:

  • The 17 Resume Secrets that Get my Clients Interviews Immediately in 2 Weeks
  • How to Fit the Exact Criteria of the Tech Industry
  • How to Show Impact and Results (With Real Client Examples)

Challenges

Hi, my name is Justin and I've recently used Bessy’s Resume Revamp services

I just found it very challenging to translate what I had accomplished at work. My resume ended up being 5-6 pages because I was just writing down everything that I did, and it was really hard to pick. 

"My resume ended up being 5-6 pages because I was just writing down everything that I did, and it was really hard to pick."

Having someone who is:

  • In this industry 
  • Really familiar with tech
  • Experienced in helping a lot of other  recent graduates or people looking to transition into tech

Was important to me

Bessy was able to really provide a lot of insight as to what information is important as well as really highlight and showcase what is necessary when it comes to your specific role that you're applying for.

Working with Bessy

When Bessy and I first met up, we had a very long discussion as to what my goals were:

  • what type of company I want to work for small, medium, large
  • what type of work-life balance do I want to have in terms of like traveling, AM/PM job 
  •  What type of company whether global, regional, or more localized?

So we went through everything: my needs and wants for my next role.

After talking about my goals, we spent a lot of time deep diving into my 3 years at my startup.

Bessy was really able to pull out things that I didn't realize were as important or didn't think would stand out to the person reading my resume.

"Bessy was really able to pull out things that I didn't realize were as important or didn't think would stand out to the person reading my resume."

We also went through everything outside of the job that I was doing, even extracurricular activities, internships during college years; anything that would fit the job nature, she would think of.

Anything that was not important in your eyes, she definitely knew what was important and it was great to have her to identify what those were.

After going through the resume building process with her, I was handed a beautiful resume that I was excited to use to apply to all the jobs that I was interested in.

"Not only did [Bessy] help me with my resume, but she also guided and directed me into roles that really fit what I was looking for. "

Bessy distilled a couple of job roles out of the millions out there on LinkedIn to really showcase to me what type of roles would fit my experiences. The list that she provided was extremely helpful. It really gave me an opportunity to also understand what type of roles and companies I should be looking for as I continue this job search down the line. 

After the resume and providing a list of jobs, Bessy’s help did not stop. This is what I really appreciated and loved about Bessy. 

She was always checking in with me with regards to my outreach and networking strategy. She even came up with a Google sheet and an Airtable for me to keep track of my progress during this period using her strategy.

"After the resume and providing a list of jobs, Bessy’s help did not stop. This is what I really appreciated and loved about Bessy. She was always checking in with me with regards to my outreach and networking strategy. She even came up with a Google sheet and an Airtable for me to keep track of my progress "

The Results

I landed a good amount of interviews; places that I wanted to work for.

She gave me great advice in terms of outreaching and networking. I spoke with so many different people and learned so many different things; but most importantly, I got a lot of referrals into the companies that I wanted to work for. 

And it was a great foot in the door that eventually landed me two offers! One was a hospitality real estate startup. Another was a food and beverage tech startup.

"She gave me great advice in terms of outreaching and networking... And it was a great foot in the door that eventually landed me two offers! One was a hospitality real estate startup. Another was a food and beverage tech startup."

And both of the companies had great offers. 

I can’t thank Bessy enough in helping me get to that point. Not only that, I was actually able to find a job within a month after enlisting her help!

I ended up choosing to go with the hospitality startup as it's an industry that I want to continue to be in. 

Who would Justin recommend Bessy's programs to?

I highly recommend Bessy as my time with her was extremely efficient.

I learnt a lot from her ; I clearly had a lot to learn but also gain with her help. 

I was able to find a job within a month, I was able to really learn how to network and get referrals in the most efficient way, and I was able to gain confidence during this whole period to really help me excel during my interview process

"I was able to find a job within a month, I was able to really learn how to network and get referrals in the most efficient way, and I was able to gain confidence during this whole period to really help me excel during my interview process"

I highly recommend anyone thinking about using Bessy across any of the services that she provides. 

I highly suggest students who are graduating from college  or people like me who just graduated college and are a couple years out, trying to stay in the tech space or trying to transition into the tech space. 

Anyone under the sun can benefit from her. And I can't thank you enough Bessy for helping me through this process.

Cheers to the next job! Thank you. 

Feeling Discouraged? Not Knowing What You can Bring to the

Table or What You Can Really Do in Tech as a Non-Tech Person?

Download the Free Resume Revamp Guide To Learn:

  • The 17 Resume Secrets that Get my Clients Interviews Immediately in 2 Weeks
  • How to Fit the Exact Criteria of the Tech Industry
  • How to Show Impact and Results (With Real Client Examples)

From Media Sales Ops to Dream Job in Rideshare Tech Product Operations Even During COVID

Today we have an awesome testimonial from Rachel who moved from a Sales Operations/Account Manager role in a Traditional Media Agency to Product Operations in Rideshare Technology. She's tried everything:

  • used other interview coaching services before 
  • networked and reached out to people on LinkedIn
  • applied online
  • interviewed at different big tech firms
  • tried to figure out the right strategic or analytical roles to get into 

But was never able to land a final offer nor was she sure what relevant experiences she had to share or what opportunities there were

She found me through YouTube. We worked together in the Interview Prep Program helping her prepare her for interviews

In the end, she was able to:

  • Land two offers in Sales Ops and Product Ops across mediatech and rideshare tech
  • Ace her interviews with strong rapport with interviewers
  • Learn the exact system that she could replicate for future interviews
  • Start her dream job in tech with an amazing team even during COVID-19
  • Increase her salary by +75%
  • Move to California to be closer to her family and boyfriend

Without further ado, I’ll have Rachel speak about her experiences with her own words:

Challenges

I have quite a unique background having worked in Policy within government & tech, and Sales Operations within media. However, I wanted to re-break into tech, specifically within Product Operations. I had gotten to the final rounds of interviews at a few high tech companies, but could never seem to land the offer.


I became frustrated that I had recently reached the final rounds of 5 interviews, but had never received the offer nor feedback to improve. I wasn’t sure where I was going wrong or what I could be doing differently. 

"I became frustrated that I had recently reached the final rounds of 5 interviews, but had never received the offer nor feedback to improve. I wasn’t sure where I was going wrong or what I could be doing differently."

I believe my true problem was that I panicked when answering interview questions because I believed I had to regurgitate my pre-written script. I focused too much on memorization that if I forgot any part, I would blank out and babble through the rest of the story -- often failing to emphasize the impact of the story. Bessy helped me understand that there were other approaches that would be much more effective in helping me achieve my goals.

What I've Tried

My interview prep methods included reaching out to people in the role I was interviewing for on LinkedIn, scripting out answers to my interview bank questions and trying to memorize them and then regurgitate them on command, and doing basic research on the company. It wasn’t until going through Bessy’s coaching that I realized I needed to work “smarter not harder.”

I also used a different interview prep service that included two 1-hour sessions and had gotten positive feedback, but didn’t receive tips on what could be improved on or what to do next.

Meeting and Working with Bessy

I found Bessy on Youtube through other testimonial success stories, and eventually came to her after having tried another popular interview prep service and not receiving the service or results I wanted. I knew that I needed a more personalized coach to be with me through every step of my interview process, and believed Bessy’s program would be a better fit for my needs.

Bessy gave me the honest feedback I needed to hear and provided suggestions on how to actually improve. Additionally, Bessy’s unique perspective on breaking into the tech industry from her own experience, as well as being an interviewer at a high tech company, helped me feel understood and confident.
 

"I believe what sets Bessy apart from other services is her thoughtful and tailored approach to each client. With the other interview prep service I used, I felt they were just going through the motions and I was merely a number to them"

I believe what sets Bessy apart from other services is her thoughtful and tailored approach to each client.

 With the other interview prep service I used, I felt they were just going through the motions and I was merely a number to them. However, Bessy’s approach was much more personalized and tailored to me. She took the time to get to know me, really listened to what I wanted and didn’t want, understood the role I was interviewing for, astutely tied in how my experiences matched the role’s, and provided actionable insights for me to improve on.

Moreover, she was extremely responsive in providing constructive criticism during weekly meetings, interview responses, and mock interviews and all while keeping an excited and encouraging attitude.

Interview Prep Coaching with Bessy

Bessy helped me understand my interview responses were very broad and needed to be much more tailored to each role I was applying for. 


Before Bessy, I had a couple informal chats here and there to understand what the team was like and their main responsibilities. Bessy’s emphasis on informal chats, and the strategic information to pull from those chats, were a game-changer.

"Bessy’s emphasis on informal chats, and the strategic information to pull from those chats, were a game-changer."

I do believe that this tactic was instrumental in me landing my current role. I believe the role I am in now is where I’m meant to be. It’s a very good fit that blends my unique past and the area I hoped to be in in my future.

Getting the Offer

Despite COVID, I was able to take Bessy’s learnings and land offers from 2 tech companies within Sales Operations and Product Operations.

Who Would You Recommend this Program To?

If you are looking for a supportive, open, and honest career coach who personally understands the interviewer’s perspective and the inner workings of the tech industry, as well as can help guide you to realize what you want out of your career, Bessy is the choice for you.

"Her end-to-end program is great for anyone who is overwhelmed, considering a role or industry transition, or needs expert guidance on your next steps. I was lost and frustrated before Bessy, but walked away with an instilled confidence I never thought I could have."


Her end-to-end program is great for anyone who is overwhelmed, considering a role or industry transition, or needs expert guidance on your next steps.

I was lost and frustrated before Bessy, but walked away with an instilled confidence I never thought I could have.

Want To Nail Your Next Tech Behavioral Interview?

Get the 25-pg Interview Prep Guide that shares the 5 Fundamental Strategies + 43 Real Questions you should prep for to ace your non-tech tech interview

These strategies landed my clients in companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Salesforce, Apple, LinkedIn, etc.

From Analyst in Traditional Finance to Product Management

Today we have an awesome testimonial from Sarah who moved from an Analyst role in Finance to Product Management. She found me through the 10 days to tech free webinar series and realized she wanted more support:

  • She had had used another coaching service and didn’t get the results that she wanted
  • She wanted to get out of Finance that made her work long 12+ hours everyday
  • She didn’t know what she could get into or how to start the job search (since this was her first job out of college)
  • She tried networking, even applying to 30-35 jobs, that didn’t lead anywhere

We worked together in the All-in-One Program helping her identify the right role, revamp her resume, prepare her for interviews, and hold weekly coaching calls.

In the end, she was able to:

  • Land referrals from FinTech
  • Gain 2 product management interviews
  • Get offered a job in Product Management within 2 months.

Without further ado, I’ll have Sarah speak about her experiences with her own words:

Challenges

My challenges before meeting with Bessy were that I didn't know what jobs to apply to because I wasn't aware of what roles would align best with my experience. I also didn't know how to approach the job search because I think I had been connecting with people and sending invites on LinkedIn, but I wasn't super focused on finding the right team and the right people.

"I didn't know what jobs to apply to because I wasn't aware of what roles would align best with my experience. I also didn't know how to approach the job search"

It was basically just reaching out to random people on LinkedIn that were working at companies that I was interested in.

But then the conversations wouldn't really go anywhere because they were not in the right team or they just didn't know what the right people.

Additionally, I applied to between 30 and 35 before working with Bessy. Some of those I also got referred to, but I just didn't get any results from that and didn't land an offer.

What I've Tried

I also had a coach before Bessy but their program wasn't exactly what I was looking for. While the coach was helpful in giving me general advice, I didn’t get  the results that I wanted, which was landing a job in a tech role at a tech company.

Meeting and Working with Bessy

After all of that, I found Bessy because I think I just came across her name while I was doing research on non-tech roles at tech companies and I decided to reach out because I had tried all of these different methods, but it wasn't leading me anywhere.

I was getting really frustrated with the process.

"I decided to reach out [to Bessy] because I had tried all of these different methods, but it wasn't leading me anywhere.
I was getting really frustrated with the process."

So I decided to reach out to Bessy and we had a call initially to work through my situation and to come up with the strategy on how to move forward.

I think what I found really helpful was the whole spectrum of support that was offered.

In the beginning we went through my resume; we basically revamped the whole thing. And she was able to give me a brand new resume with all of my experiences quantified and written in a language such that recruiters would know what I was doing.

Then after the resume, we had our weekly calls to track our progress.

Weekly Coaching with Bessy

What was really special about Bessy was that she would really drop whatever she was doing and help you if something came up.

For instance, when I told her that I had an interview come up unexpectedly, she, found a time in our schedules to help me prepare for that. We had two separate sessions that were not part of our initial strategy, just so that she could help me prepare for this interview. I really appreciate that from Bessy

And I always had a constant line of communication and support from Bessy, even when we’re not working. Because during a job search, there are so many different things that can come up and sometimes we cover them during our weekly calls but sometimes things just come up unexpectedly. It was really good to have the option to just text your coach and get a timely response or feedback.

I think the weekly coaching calls and all the resources that I received were helpful in that they provided tools that I could use for later on. It wasn't just a one-time thing. I could actually use these tools in the future when I'm job searching again; it's like the same strategies and same tactics of reaching out to people on LinkedIn using this very action oriented and tangible script.

"I think the weekly coaching calls and all the resources that I received were helpful in that they provided tools that I could use for later on. It wasn't just a one-time thing. I could actually use these tools in the future when I'm job searching again"

And then, she also provided a list of questions that you could ask in the informal interviews to get exactly the right information that you wanted.

So from the networking that I did, I was actually able to obtain several referrals from strangers that I didn't have any connections with before, so that was really helpful in that sense. 

Landing Interviews and Preparing with Bessy

After working with Bessy, I was able to land two interviews for product management, which I didn't think I would be able to get because of my background in Finance.

The sessions that Bessy helped me with really prepared me to answer the questions in the interview. And the sessions were very thorough. We worked in this interview doc together where we answered all of the questions for the interview.

I think that wasn't something that I had done before, and I found that really helpful just to get all my thoughts out on a Google doc. And that just helped me prepare for the interviews better.

We managed to predict all the questions.. I didn't get any curve ball questions. Which was really good

"We managed to predict all the questions.. I didn't get any curve ball questions. Which was really good"

Getting the Offer

After all of that, I was able to land an offer in product management from my initial role in an Analyst position. And I could not have been able to do it without Bessy’s help; with the detailed interview prep that she did with me and all of the tools and resources and the support that she provided with me along the way.

So that was a great outcome!

Who would you recommend this program to?

I think this service is great for anyone who wants to take the leap from their current position right now to a tech role, because maybe you have been doing everything like me and have tried reaching out to people, talking to people, and applying to a bunch of jobs, but have gotten no results.

I think just getting a coach like Bessy to provide you with the support and the knowledge that you may not have is really tremendously helpful.

It will give you the results that you want.

ANSWER THE TOP TECH INTERVIEW QUESTIONS
ERROR-FREE AND WITH CONFIDENCE — EVERY TIME

Download this 25-page Ultimate Interview Guide to get my Top 5 Interview Prep strategies that landed my clients in companies like Google, Amazon, Facbeook, Salesforce, Apple, LinkedIn, etc.

3-Steps to Ace “Why do you want to Join this Company?” (with 4 Real Example Answers)

There are a lot of interview questions that are commonly asked during tech interviews as it is in traditional ones. One of them is, "Why do you want to join this company?" 

Other variations include "Why do you want to join us?" or "Why do you want to work for us?"

The challenge most of my clients face is, "I know how to answer this question but I don't know if it's what tech companies look for, or if it is 'right'."

Today I'll talk more about:

  • Why do companies ask this question? What do they want out of it?
  • What's the best way to answer "Why do you want to join our company?" 
  • How can you best show that you're the right fit for the role and company?
  • How do you show you're a great "Culture Fit?"
  • How do you best frame your answers to communicate your passion, experiences, and skillsets? 

If you're interested in learning more about how to best prepare for interviews (especially for behavioral questions) and what to expect for interviews with 40+ real example questions, then feel free to subscribe and get the 25-pg Ultimate Interview Prep Guide here for free!

Why is this Question, "Why Do you Want To Join Our Company?" Important?

#1 Showcase Desire to Get Into the Company vs Tech Industry

Firstly, companies want to see if you want to just get into the tech industry and randomly picked a company, or if you actually thought about how their company's vision, their working model, the leadership, their products actually excite you. 

Employees really make the future of a tech company. That is why the hiring process is so intense with behavioral questions. This is so that they can make sure employees have a strong desire to get into that company to contribute to the company's success.

#2 Show Understanding of Team & Day-to-Day work

Secondly, companies want to understand if there's a mismatch in your goals. They want to see if you actually understand what the company  does and if there's a mismatch between what you see in the company vs what the team needs you to do in the role. 

For example, if you talk a lot about building new products and working with engineers but the role is specifically to drive sales, then there may be a mismatch in the team and day-to-day work. 

#3 Align to the Company's "Culture Fit"

Previously, I talked a little about how tech companies have 4 different criteria in evaluating a good candidate. These criteria include: leadership, problem solving, role related knowledge or experience, and also culture fit.

This specific question tries to answer quite a few of them, but specifically culture fit.

Different companies actually have different missions, so we will address this goal later in this video/article  about how to talk about the mission in a clear way.

Using the 1-2-3 Method to Answer this Interview Question

There's three steps to answering this question, I call this the 1-2-3 Method.

I talk about this method in more detail in the full interview prep guide. If you're interested in learning more about how I approach interview prep for my clients, you can download it at BessyTam.com/interviewquestions.

This method is called the 1-2-3 method. You can use this method in behavioral as well as hypothetical questions during interviews.  It's fantastic because it's a strong framework for you to:

  1. Deliver your story and message in a clear and succinct way that allows the interviewer to easily follow your points (and thus write interview notes about it for calibration)
  2. Buy some time to brainstorm your answers.
  3. Demonstrate that you have a strong thought process towards your answer and why

With the 1-2-3 method we can then showcase in this interview question, "Hey, these are 3 reasons why I want to join this company...  Firstly it's because blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Secondly it's because blah blah.. and Thirdly its because..." 

Overall, you want to keep your answer to a maximum of 1 minute 30 seconds to ensure that you have more time for questions/building rapport. 

Step 1:  Mission of the Company

First point is for you to address you how align with the mission of the company.

This is information  you can find online on different websites, podcast, company, financial statements, or even founders letters, shareholder calls

Step 2: Mission of the Team

So previously I talked a lot about reaching out to relevant people in the right team and the right hiring team to understand exactly:

  •  what their business challenges are
  • what their goals or opportunities are
  • and how this role actually plays into the success of the team.

With understanding the mission of the team. You can then place yourself "in the team" and showcase how you can contribute to these goals.

Whether the team's mission means transforming a certain product,  changing a certain industry and the way that they interact with the target company's products, or growing the company through your analysis.

In this step, you want to be as specific as you can be. As you talk to more people, you'll be able to hone in on what the team wants exactly and speak to those points during interviews eg "I know the team is looking to do xyz... In the past I've..."

Step 3: Personal Experiences with the Company or Product

Lastly, I guide my clients to talk about their own experiences with the product and the company and how it changed their own life.

For example: 

  • With Facebook, I personally found friends on the platform from 5th grade whom I thought I would never see again.
  • With Google, you can talk about how it helped you solve some of the challenging problems you've faced and how some advertisements or YouTube (like my video) actually helped you learn new things

If you don't have your own experiences to share, you can also share a friend's or a family member's story to still amplify your passion for the whole company. For example for Facebook, you can  talk about how your parents or grandparents may have found long lost friends from school or their hometown.

So now I'll show you some examples of how my clients have approached this question with my guidance.

4 Real Client Examples across Different Tech Companies and Roles

Example #1: Account Executive in LinkedIn

Here's an example from a client of mine who switched from marketing to account executive in LinkedIn. Although the structure shown is slightly different the points made are still similar. 

Breaking Down the First Paragraph:
  1. The first paragraph shows both professional and personal experiences in using the target company's product
  2. I guided her to  highlight her entrepreneurial spirit because:
    1. Tech companies really value having an entrepreneurial mindset and being a "self-starter" and "problem solver"
    2. the role as an Account Executive really needs someone who is a go-getter, to get new clients. (Note that different companies have different definitions of what an "Account Executive" does. She's spoken to 8+ people at LinkedIn to know exactly what the roles were meant to do
  3. Mentioning that LinkedIn is the #1 platform for b2b lead generation + 630M users shows that she's done her research and knows a lot about tech and marketing industries
Breaking Down the Second Paragraph:
  1. The second paragraph shows how she used a specific product to grow her network (the purpose of the company and team mission)
  2. She mentioned how she bonded really well with the LinkedIn employees, demonstrating a strong "Culture Fit"in the company and team.
Breaking Down the Third Paragraph: 
  1. She was specific in naming the people she's talked to in order to build a strong rapport in the first 5-10 minutes of the interview
  2. It concludes her approach really well and demonstrates how deeply she thought about this company and why she loves the culture, product, company, and mission.
With this answer she was able to:
  1. land her dream job at Linkedin as an Account Executive
  2. land a job that was not open to the public when she started doing outreaches to talk to these people in the team. 

Example #2: Program Manager at Facebook

Secondly, here's an example from a client who switched from consulting to program management at Facebook. 

Breaking Down the First Paragraph:
  1. We aligned the company's mission to the wider 1-2-3 method. This mission was found on Facebook's company page
  2. We highlighted her experience in working with the government to show her ability to work in a highly regulated industry. Although the job description did not mention strong experiences in doing so, I know that it's important to her target role working in the payments industry.
  3. We talked about impact instead of what the company can do for her, to show what she can give vs what she can "get" from the company
Breaking Down the Second Paragraph:
  1. We aligned the 2nd paragraph to the target hiring team. The terminology "quick transactions" was mentioned because she was going for a payments team and many of her outreach calls with the hiring team mentioned this mission/product.
  2. She used her friend's story to tie back to the team's mission
  3. We highlighted "increasing sustainability and reducing waste" here because it is not only something that was dear to her heart but also because Facebook really cares about these topics too. By tying those in, we could talk about both the company's and the team's mission.
Breaking Down the Third Paragraph:
  1. We highlighted her personal experiences through social impact.
  2. The personal story we used about running long distance exemplifies not only her drive and given personality but also how she used "quick transactions" or Facebook payment solutions to accomplish her goal.
  3. We highlighted the "feedback loop" portion since this was tied back to the team's mission too, to quicken product feedback or customer feedback back to payment teams. We highlighted this to showcase how her own goal is tied to giving back to Facebook (vs what she can "take" from the company)

Example #3: Business Analyst at Netflix

Thirdly, here's an example from a client who interviewed at Netflix as a business analyst, coming from the real estate industry

Breaking Down the First Paragraph:
  1. We started the answer again by setting up the 1-2-3 method "I want to join Netflix because of 3 main reasons..."
  2. Talking about the company's history not only shows that she's done your homework to research the company but also demonstrates how she was aligned to the company's mission
  3. The role was a global business analyst role, so it was important to highlight how she was aligned to helping Netflix grow globally through analysis. 
Breaking Down the Second Paragraph:
  1. Although the sequence is slightly different here, but "Freedom and Responsibility" is part of the company's mission. We knew this as we researched Netflix's 7 core values in addition to their SlideShare deck.
  2. We talked about how she researched the company through podcasts and videos to show how much she loved the culture, demonstrating "Culture fit"
  3. Talking about her showing initiative to learn is really important. As someone in tech, its not only important to have domain expertise or experiences in your role, its even more important to be continually challenging yourself, learning things outside of work, and gathering data/knowledge that you may not have had experiences. This ultimately aligns to 2 of the 4 criteria that companies look for : Leadership and problem solving.
Breaking Down the Third Paragraph:
  1. Narratives and storytelling are parts of Netflix's 7 core values
  2. She has global experiences both in China and the US. This allows her to provide a unique global perspective to the global business analyst role and help Netflix grow around the world. Personally, I've highlighted my experiences working in both Hong Kong, Asia Pacific, as well as the US in order to land my own role as a Global Product lead at Google as well.

Example #4: Product Manager at a Real Estate Startup

Lastly, here's an example from a client who interviewed at a Real Estate Startup coming from an e-commerce Product Manager background

Breaking Down the First Paragraph:
  1. We explained the company's history to show how he's done research on the company's background and mission.
  2. We talked about different ways that can make people's lives easier, faster, and more convenient. These are aspects that were mentioned throughout past outreach calls to employees in the company
  3. The last sentence quickly addresses a common tech interview question "what would you improve about the company/product?" This allows the interviewer to do 1 of 2 things. Either:
    1. Dig deeper on this as a follow up question and thus allow him to demonstrate his strong product ownership mindset as a Product Manager.
    2. Or, skip the follow up question overall since it was addressed in this answer and therefore save time in the interview for him to ask the interviewer questions instead
Breaking Down the Second Paragraph:
  1. Driving scale, platform mindset,  operational efficiencies, and self-service app is directly tied to the team's mission
  2. We aligned what he knew from outreach calls and research by stating "From what I understand... "
  3. We added a STAR story, a framework that I explain in my ultimate interview prep guide, to strongly align his past experiences with the team's mission. This helps interviewers envision what he could do for the company if he were to be hired.
  4. With any example, it's super important to have exact numbers and metrics to clearly demonstrate the impact you could bring. Eg .1 brand is different from 13 brands. 3% increase is different from 55% increase. This allowed him to standout among other candidates
  5. We added Company B, a different STAR example specifically about reducing 1:1 customer service, to demonstrate his approach to scaling a business. This was also something that the target company needed and thus could relate to. 
Breaking Down the Third Paragraph:
  1. His personal passion in the real estate industry is awesome and we wanted to highlight that. This allowed us to move away from his "ecommerce" background and showcase domain expertise instead.
  2. We specifically highlighted his strong understanding of the user - as both a tenant and landlord - to ensure that he would be in a great position to be a product manager, since product managers need to have a strong understanding of the user.
  3. The startup highlighted this opportunity, specifically the"$35B multisite property market," on their website. This shows his research and strong alignment to the company's mission, goals, and future.
  1. His personal passion in the real estate industry is awesome and we wanted to highlight that. This allowed us to move away from his "ecommerce" background and showcase domain expertise instead.
  2. We specifically highlighted his strong understanding of the user - as both a tenant and landlord - to ensure that he would be in a great position to be a product manager, since product managers need to have a strong understanding of the user.
  3. The startup highlighted this opportunity, specifically the"$35B multisite property market," on their website. This shows his research and strong alignment to the company's mission, goals, and future.

Next Steps for you

Want to learn more about how to ace interviews in tech? Download the free guide below

Let me know in the comments below or in the video, how this article and strategy has helped you answer "Why do you want to join this company?" well. Even better, tell me how its helped you ace your interview or land your dream job!

Want to know the SECRETS to acing interviews in tech?

Download this FREE 23-Page Ultimate Interview Prep Guide

to Master Non-Technical Interviews

  • What To Expect in Tech Interviews?
  • How to Best Prepare for Behavioral Interviews
  • The Top 5 Interview Prep Strategies to Land Jobs at LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Startups
  • 43 Interview Real Questions my Clients Got that you MUST Prepare for!

How to Get Promoted Quickly by Making a Lateral (Diagonal) Career Move : Z’s Story

Today we have a testimonial from Z. Z has had challenges stumbling in cognitive questions during previous Google and Facebook. He knew he needed help and reached out to work with Bessy on the interview prep program, particularly on the Google final interviews he had coming up.

Although Google had a hiring freeze during COVID, all the interviewers (including the Director) mentioned that he would've been hired if it weren't for the case. At the same time, the interview prep actually helped him get into a startup within cryptocurrency since the role was quite similar.

This is awesome because it:

  1. Happened during COVID and while other people were having challenges getting any job at all, he was able to get a awesome role
  2. Gave him an opportunity to become a manager. This was something that he really, really wanted
  3. Expanded his skill sets beyond just paid ads, but also into organic search as well in order to grow the company
  4. Allowed him to get to Shanghai because this was a place that he really wanted to go. Previously he was in Hangzhou in Alibaba

We were able to use it interview prep program to make sure his answers were very clear and concise because Z has a  bit of a challenge being succinct. This way, we were able to make a big connection with both the company as well as Z in order to maximize the interview's value and content within limited 30 minutes time.

Check out Z's video above and make sure you subscribe and comment.

If you also want to have a free 23-page interview prep guide, download it here in this link 

In Z's Own Words:

Hi, My name is Z!

I have recently worked with Bessy on interviewer coaching where she helped me through all stages of my interview at Google as well as for a start up. We were able to drill down on every single question that she knew that the interviewers were going to ask me [and she was right!]

"From my previous experience in tech interviews...I stumbled through different cognitive questions that I was not prepared for and I wasn't able to give as well-rounded of an answer as I would wouldn't have hope for."

I was in Alibaba in China Hangzhou and I was there for a little over 6 months.

At that point I kind of realized I want to try something that fit my career and personal strengths a bit more.

So my challenges were: I realized that interviews had a real format every time I went through interviews in top tech companies eg Facebook & Google. I had a hard time passing final interviews from my previous experience in these interviews, such as in Google a year ago for a different position.

I stumbled through different cognitive questions that I was not prepared for and I wasn't able to give as well-rounded of an answer as I would wouldn't have hope for.

I would think to myself after I answered the question, "Oh, I should've answered that differently!"

And the funny thing was that, I didn't work with Bessy until the last 2 rounds for my interview at  Google. The first two rounds I noticed I continued to stumble. I couldn't answer the question the way it should be.

The interview themselves were kind of like, "Oh, that answer took a very long time!" They would just give me that feedback, in a very polite way, that it was little too long.

And I realized that [whatever I was doing] didn't work.

"I tried to work on this myself, talk to more friends, and doing more online research... But none of it worked."

I know that I have to show this interviewer within 30-40 minutes all 360-degrees of who I was. I have to make sure that I answered interview questions differently for every interviewer to tailor my answers and provide even better versions of my answers

I tried to work on this myself, talk to more friends, and doing more online research.

But none of it worked.

"I looked her up on LinkedIn and saw what she was posting, specifically regarding COVID-19 Interview preparation for Tech. So I was like, 'wow this is really cool! this person knows what she's doing.'"

Knowing that, my ex-coworker recommended me to Bessy.

I looked her up on LinkedIn and saw what she was posting, specifically regarding COVID-19 Interview preparation for Tech. So I was like, "wow this is really cool! this person knows what she's doing."

"Bessy helped me study the interviewers.... turn negative questions to a positive answer...ask interview questions & follow up on them... and negotiate the salary to get the most out of my offer"

I recommend Bessy because of 3 reasons:

#1 It's really a professional service end-to-end

Throughout this experience, she's always attending our meetings on time, helping me through the details, and asking me all the qualifying questions before our meetings so that we don't really jump into things .

#2 Bessy is really resourceful​

She's someone who's worked and lived in Hong Kong( Asia), and in Chicago (America). So with her experiences and wealth of network, she can help you answer all the questions and think with a bigger picture.

Initially I thought this was one of those coaching services where you just kind of talk about something and then you spend an hour on it. 

But with Bessy even from the beginning, she spent time on each question during the interview prep and gave me 14 pages of information. She spent almost 2 hours in our first session to go through the steps in detail with me.

Overall she helped me:

  • Study the interviewers to connect with them more
  • Turn a negative question to a positive answer such as "Why are you leaving your current role?" Initially I had a wishy washy answer like "the environment is not right for me"
  • Be able to ask the interview questions and then follow up on their answers to show off my skills and strengths. This helped me be a lot more confident
  • Negotiate the salary. Talking through the ins and outs, helping me stay focused during the interviews until I got an offer so that I could get the most out of it, and pushing the negotiations back so that I could buy more time when I was waiting for both Google and the startup (that I got an offer with). 

#3 This is a thought provoking experience

A lot of times when you prepare for interviews yourself, you feel like you did okay and it was great. 

When I'm talking to my friends or coworkers, or doing research online, I never knew if my answers were right, clean, or detailed enough. I also didn't know if my answers were timed to 1 or 2 minutes [the way that Bessy coached me]. 

From a professional standpoint, I always wondered, "Can these answers really fit into the role that I'm apply to?"

And with Bessy, she's able to ask you question after question to think through my answers. For example, I thought my strengths were managing people but she helped me dig deeper into my approach, "is it really managing people?"

She just helped me drill down step-by-step and walk me through my own answers.

"Bessy and I were working together for almost a month and a half, and the results were very clear... I was able to answer all the questions that all the interviewers had... and come off as confident"

Bessy and I were working together for like almost a month, month and half. The results were very clear when I compared the first few interview loops to the second interview loops (where Bessy and I worked together).

I was able to answer all the questions that all the interviewers had, Not just during the Google interview but also other interviews from other startups I was interviewing with at that point.

When I went through the interview, it was as if I almost memorized my script. I knew how to answer whatever they were asking me and however many ways that they could ask those questions eg what's my strengths, what's my weaknesses, etc.

And because of this, I came off as confident

I knew the answers very fluidly and I was able to stop myself from talking forever (which is one of my "habits").

I remember another experiences where I had a startup interview that I didn't really prep for. But because I've already prepped with Bessy on Google, I was able to just pick up the phone and start listing my stuff. I was able to use that Google interview experience in this interview experience.

It worked out just the same because the role was similar.

"With this experience, a company gave me an offer. I was really happy because the role expanded my skills horizontally... and helped me go from an in individual contributor to a managing role managing ...potentially 10 people"

Before working with Bessy, I interviewed with almost 10 companies. With this experience [working with Bessy], one of the companies gave me the offer

I was really happy because that role:

  • Allowed me to switch from my position from Alibaba in Hangzhou to a blockchain company in Shanghai (where I wanted to me)
  • Expanded my skills horizontally from just paid to organic search
  • Helped me go from individual contributor to a manager role managing 3-5 people, potentially 10.
  • Helped me step into the startup world since I'd been working at big companies for the past 8 or 9 years of my career. This is the first time I'll be in a startup that's growing crazily.

My Google interviewers said that if it weren't for COVID-19 and thus a hiring freeze, I would have gotten the Google offer. 

On the other hand, I still got to offer a year in a blockchain in Shanghai, which was still huge.

"I found that once I had that direction, I knew where I wanted to go"

Who is this service good for? If you are transitioning from a(n):

  • Non-tech industry to a tech industry
  • Individual contributor to a manager role
  • Startup to a non-startup role
  • Role to anything that's a little bit more outside your comfort zone where you are going to have to answer questions that you are usually not ready for
  • Non-structured type of interview to a very structured interview like Google, Facebook, and Amazon

You have to be just very clear in the short amount of time. That kind of result get. you not only the job but really at the end of the day, gets you the pay and the level that you deserve as well.

A person can have 20 years of experiences in tech but if you interview like a 5-year experienced person, you'll just give doubt to people on the other side of the interview table.

Especially with COVID-19, we're going to have even more interviews that's on video. You lose that body language to connect with interviewers.

So these are things that Bessy will help you through, which of course you need to find out later yourself, right?

Want to know the SECRETS to acing interviews in tech?

Download this FREE 23-Page Ultimate Interview Prep Guide

to Master Non-Technical Interviews

  • What To Expect in Tech Interviews?
  • How to Best Prepare for Behavioral Interviews
  • The Top 5 Interview Prep Strategies to Land Jobs at LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Startups
  • 43 Interview Real Questions my Clients Got that you MUST Prepare for!

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