Hello Engineeeers!!! Interview season is back and apart from acing your DSA and system design skills, there is another round critical to getting that fat salary job.
Some may call it a bar raiser round or leadership principles round. Regardless of that the primary focus in these rounds rotates around the behavioral questions.
In this post, we will discuss some of the common Software Engineer Behavioral Interview questions to prepare you for that interview.
Table of Contents
Why do you want to work with us?
As cliche as it may sound, this question is still relevant today. We all know that one main reason we want to work for someone is the compensation. But lol please don’t mention this 😂.
Your answer to this question basically shows if you have done your own research on the company or not. The interviewer expects you to know about the company’s business beforehand, what all products and services they offer. To know all this information you should check out the company’s website and look for all their clients. Or go read some of their blogs on their website.
I looked upon XYZ and I am truly amazed to see what XYZ is doing in the ABC domain, and I truly think this is something revolutionary. I would love to be a part of something like this and help in the journey of making this more impactful. Apart from all these, I went through the engineering blogs of XYZ and I am truly impressed with the engineering culture and practices followed here.
Also read, What is p50-p90-p99 latency?
Why do you want to leave your current role/company?
There can be
n number of reasons why you want to leave your current role, starting from compensation to culture. One thing that you should keep in your mind is that, no matter how legit your reason is, you don’t want to talk negatively about your current employer.
This will become a major red flag for the employer, as it shows that you were not willing to maybe adjust or keep it confidential. You should rather focus on convincing the interviewer that your current role is absolutely fine, it’s just that the new job would benefit you in your career. Show that your current role has nothing new that could add value to your profile no more.
Obviously, if your reasons are genuine like if there are layoffs in your current company, etc. You could raise that.
I’ve been working here for 2 years now, and this place is a very fast-paced environment. I was lucky to be part of this team at the start phase of this project. We have built-up the system that handles all the critical activities, but now the time has come when I am ready for a new challenge.
How do you handle conflicts or disagreements with co-workers or manger?
This question is generally asked by hiring managers to judge your ability to collaborate and have healthy debates on certain points. The way you handle such uncomfortable situations speaks a lot about your personality and your presence of mind. As it is easy to get all aggressive and defensive, but this will only make things harder for you.
We were planning down the roadmap for a new project for which we had just completed the High-Level System Design and other necessary steps. Our manager pointed out that the estimates in the roadmap were quite higher than his expectations, and we had a healthy debate on how the team had come up with the estimates. Given the criticality of the system, it was essential to take some buffers as we needed to continuously review the progress and check for any missed edge cases.
How do you set goals or milestones for yourself in your tenure?
The interviewer wants to judge if you are committing yourself to your career. Having career goals only shows how serious and ambitious you are to progress in your career. Make sure that whatever you say here is not way too ambitious or non-achievable in the given time span. Giving an example from your past will definitely be a cherry on top.
Given my current skills and knowledge, I would like to learn more about XYZ. Once this is done, I would like to add more responsibilities to my plate. I would keep setting up a 1:1 call with my manager every month or two to take feedback. Based on that I would check if I am making progress in the direction that I’ve set for myself. This is a procedure that I learned from my first job. I’ve been following it ever since. And I must say it helped me in getting 2 promotions in my 2-year tenure.
Also, learn about deployments in production environment, Blue-Green Deployment
Give me an example where you had to take leadership responsibilities
This will be asked of you only if you hold some prior experience. This is an important behavioral question for software engineers with experience. As it allows them to understand, how great an owner you could be. Leadership is not only about distributing work but also about how you overcome the challenges faced by your team.
All work and no play makes jack a dull boyAnonymous
Setting a fun culture is also a very crucial part of leadership. Your relations with colleagues should not only be transactional but also fun. Never hesitate to give your teammates credit for a good job.
I led XYZ project at ABC which was responsible for generating $ 1 Million ARR. And this was only possible because I was blessed with an amazing team of rockstars. I’ve set up a recurring 1:1 call with all my teammates to check if they are satisfied with their work. If they have any personal problems that might affect their performance. I also take feedback from them to understand their expectations. Last but not least, I make sure that we work hard and party harder.
Tell me about the most challenging project you have worked on
You should be well-prepared for this question because it is not something that you can cook right away. You need to dig past your career and explain the most challenging project. Be sure to go thoroughly through the project because your hiring manager could turn out to be. a techie and may drill down with questions related to the project.
Recently, I created a report service that was responsible for downloading the report for thousands and millions of data processed. The microservice had crashed a couple of times also the latency of the service was not so great. I then converted this service to an on-demand + batch job service. It was quite challenging to implement this as the deadlines were tight and the service was important for the analytics team to understand user behavior.
How do you handle criticism or tough feedback?
Criticism plays a very important role not only in your career but also in every aspect of life. Share an example from your past of how you took the criticism positively and improved yourself. It may not always be helpful, but it always alerts you of doing self-checks.
So these were some of the top software engineer behavioral interview questions. Stay positive and you will automatically give positive vibes to your interviewer. Let me know in the comments if you know of other questions that you might have come across.
That’s all folks!
All the best with your interview 🙂