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About this guide

Hello and welcome to the Speak_ Tech Interview Prep Guide! 👋🏽

We’re excited that you’re here and can’t wait to help you get ready for interviews and land your dream job. This guide is intended to give you, in just 2 weeks, an overview of all the possible aspects of a tech interview you might run into.

Before you dive in, take a minute to look over the important points below so you know what to expect.

Why you need this guide

Despite being in high demand, many entry-level software engineers struggle to find their first job.

In fact, the typical software engineering job search can last months. Many candidates waste time applying for hundreds of jobs that they aren’t qualified for, or worse, that they wouldn’t even take if offered the role!

A common reason many programmers struggle with the job search is that they focus on the wrong things.

  • Nitpicking over resume fonts and colors
  • Applying to tons of jobs without a clear strategy
  • Building a bunch of shallow portfolio projects based on YouTube tutorials
  • Aimlessly networking, which can come across as spammy or insincere

If any of this sounds at all like you, don’t despair. You're not alone. But there’s a better way! In this guide, we’ll help you spend your time doing the things that matter with the goal of preparing for your tech interviews and getting hired fast.

You will...

  1. Put together an amazing resume
  2. Begin to build an effective developer portfolio
  3. Learn powerful frameworks for both hard and soft skills
  4. Make a bulletproof study schedule with built-in accountability
  5. Grow your professional network with genuine connections (cohort-only)
  6. Practice real interview skills with real people (cohort-only)

You’ll be on your way to an amazing dream job if you take action and follow through on all the strategies outlined in this guide. 🚀

A few quick notes

This guide is…

  • Open source. Come back often to see updates, new strategies, and improved workflows. And if you have suggestions on how we can improve the guide, please contribute. Here's how!
  • A step-by-step guide. Go through it in order. Each module that you complete will get you one step closer to landing your dream job.
  • Actionable. In each module, you'll learn a key concept and how to apply it. We’ll show you what you need to do, but it’s up to you to follow through.
  • An evergreen resource. The job landscape is constantly shifting, but the strategies outlined here will always help you. You’ll be learning and applying a holistic job search strategy crafted specifically for software engineers.
  • Designed for community. The magic of Speak_ is human connection. This guide was created for candidates participating in our free cohort-based course, engaged on our discord, pairing up to practice, and joining online events. (More about this in the next lesson.)

This guide is not…

  • A coding bootcamp. This guide is designed for people who already know how to code. Our goal is to help you sharpen your skills and get ready for interviews.
  • A listicle. (You know, like, “10 things every engineer must do to ace the interview…”) Tweetable tactics can only get you so far. We’d rather help you build a solid foundation for your whole career.
  • “Set it and forget it.” Following this guide will take work, but the more energy you put into it, the more value you'll get out of it. Follow through on the challenges and continue to use what you learn.

How to use this guide

This guide grew out of the 2-week cohorts Speak_ runs each month for engineering candidates, so the modules are organized around that timeline. If you're using this guide on your own, you can obviously go at your own pace, but challenge yourself to move fast!

The best experience is to join a cohort to bring this guide to life. There are other software engineers going through this exact process together right now. Team up with your peers and get active in the community in order to get the most out of this opportunity. It's totally free.

Learn more about cohorts.