“I thought my interview answers were 9 out of 10”: Landing her Dream Job at LinkedIn – Emily’s Story | Life In Tech by Bessy Tam
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“I thought my interview answers were 9 out of 10”: Landing her Dream Job at LinkedIn – Emily’s Story

Published on 18 February 2021 by Bessy Tam | Filed in Testimonials

Emily has worked in tech for 6 years and always wanted to get into a larger firm. Even though she would get interviews, she was never able to land final offers or get direct feedback from hiring managers.

She was frustrated and wanted to improve. But how can you improve when you don’t know what you’re lacking? How can you improve when you don’t know what the selection criteria was or what a role entailed beyond a job description?

Bessy and Emily worked together on the Interview Prep, Outreach Strategy (to get more “insider” information), and Negotiations

In the end, Emily was able to land her dream job at LinkedIn as a Customer Success Manager, even during the COVID pandemic.

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

Challenges

Hi, my name is Emily. I have been working in the SAAS ("Software as a Service") industry for 6 years as an Account Manager.

I've been always trying to get into one of the big tech firms that will give me a different level of exposure and more opportunities. I've been applying and getting interviews but the feedback I received was just fine but I’d never get any final offers.

This led me to have a lot of questions in my mind, wondering:

  • What is the selection criteria? 
  • How can I improve more?
  • How can I find more information that is not listed on a job post
  • And how can I make a better first impression?

I wanted to stand out from the selection process and also break down ways for me to improve.

Working with Bessy - Interview Prep

That's why I came to Bessy.

Before working with Bessy, I applied to a job. However, because I speak to Bessy beforehand about the job opportunity (which I recommend people to do so), I learned through Bessy that my experience in the field for that particular role was not solid enough.

However, working with Bessy still helped me make the most out of it and got to the final rounds.

What we did was, in the past two months:

Step 1: Google Doc with Questions Categorized and Answers

We have a questionnaire to break down everything into categories. These categories included the job, the company, and also my experience.

Bessy encouraged me to reach out to people in the company to get more information. So that I knew what to highlight in the whole interview process.

Step 2: Going through Answers with Best Practices

Bessy and I went through our answers. One thing I really like was that she gave me some new perspective on how I can make my answer better. In the past I always felt that my answers were pretty good, scoring 9 out of 10 already. And I couldn’t think of any way to improve it since the answers seems quite good.

Bessy’s fresh pair of eyes was really valuable.

Step 3: Mock Interviews

We did mock interviews. Apart from just going through the regular questions that we expected in her Google Doc, we also do something called “Rapid Fire.”

She would ask me questions that I wouldn't be able to prepare beforehand and would give me feedback. She would time how long I answered the questions, give me feedback on my structure, and guide me on my thought process.

She would also give me examples, if she was approaching this question herself and how she would answer it for herself.

Working with Bessy - Outreach Strategy

I'm very happy Bessy’s strategy didn’t just focus on the interview but she also told me that I should outreach to people to get a referral.

I was hesitant about it in the beginning because I was thinking to myself, “Okay, I never knew this person before so why on earth would he recommend me?”

Still I executed this strategy because I trusted Bessy’s professional advice.

In a good surprise, the person really referred me. He also told me more information on the call about the company such as:

  • What I would expect
  • What the culture of the office is like
  • What I should do to prepare for interviews

The Results and Negotiations

So the companies I spoke to included Google and LinkedIn. I successfully finished all 3 or 4 rounds of interviews and I received the final offer from LinkedIn.

And I was really happy with that as well.

For Google, I got a really positive review from the hiring managers and also the recruiter that I was at the top among external candidates who interviewed.

So I'm glad that I was making constant improvement during the process (Google’s interview were first, then LinkedIn)

When I received my offer, I was excited!

But I was also worried because I didn’t know how much I should negotiate and how I should approach it. I didn’t know what was the best methodology.

Bessy sent me some documentation that listed out the exact words I should say and what the do's and don'ts are. We also practiced a bit as well.

This process was really helpful and really helped calmed me down.

Who Would Emily Recommend Bessy's Programs to?

I would recommend Bessy’s services to people who:

  • Need some clarity
  • Are eager to improve the interview process
  • Need tailored advice or personal advice
  • Want end-to-end guidance from the selection, outreach, interview, to the negotiation process.

What you can get from Bessy does not just include the tips on how you can interview better and not only outreach.

Instead, I found her very approachable. Sometimes I had some small questions in mind and she responded to me fairly quickly even when she was in another time zone.

I really appreciated her timely response.

Bessy also cares about how I feel, not just helping me to sharpen my answers. She asks about my feelings and gave me confidence and encouraged me as well.

So I'm grateful that I had a supportive person working beside me and supporting me during the whole process. 


About the Author

Bessy Tam is a career coach who helps busy professionals get into their dream non-tech job in tech. She’s helped dozens of clients get interviews and offers from companies such as Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Lyft, Amazon, Babbel, & More. She currently works at Google in Chicago.

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