During your whiteboard session next week, you will play the part of interviewer for three other students. In this lesson, we will set some ground rules for your role as an interviewer. This will help ensure that everyone has a good opportunity to practice whiteboarding in as close to a realistic professional environment as possible. Being on the other side of the process can also give you valuable insight into what interviewers are looking for — and how they are trying to interact with you.
Be professional. You are seriously considering this person as an employee at your company. Refrain from being overly casual, interrupting the interviewee, or making jokes. This is a good time to be polite and courteous.
Make sure you are familiar with the question being asked — along with its solution. You'll have an opportunity to familiarize yourself with — and solve — five different problems. It's just as important that you're able to actively take part in your peers' whiteboards as it is to successfully conduct your own.
Do not offer clues or suggestions unless asked. In a whiteboard technical interview, interviewers will sometimes provide clues if an interviewee is struggling — and especially if an interviewee asks for support. While an interviewer may try to make the interview more pleasant in this situation, it's not a good sign in terms of being seriously considered for the job.
Ask clarifying questions if needed. If something isn't clear in the interviewee's code or in their explanation, ask clarifying questions. If the interviewee is in the middle of explaining and/or writing their algorithm, do not interrupt. Instead, wait for an opportune moment to ask your question.
Give candid, honest feedback. At the end of each whiteboard interview, you will be expected to give candid, honest feedback. Remember that this feedback will be anonymized. If you are concerned about sharing your feedback with a peer, please let your instructor know. In the next lesson, we will cover giving constructive feedback.