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The Big Q: What to do after arguing during a technical interview

Posted on 20/02/2019
by David Leadbitter

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This week's Big Q looks at the thorny issue of what to say when you have a not-so-subtle disagreement with your interviewer. 


I had a technical phone interview today where the interviewer and I had a disagreement on a (small, very unimportant) technical detail in my code. 

He insisted I was wrong and - against my better judgement - I got too attached to the argument  kept pursuing the point. It didn't escalate beyond the issue at hand, though it did get a little heated, and in hindsight I just would have dropped the point after the first iteration of argument. 

I realise I blew my chance with the company for now, but as far as maintaining a possibility to work there in the future and general politeness to a fellow human goes, is this something I should send an apology about? 

Client Server Australia's Associate Director David Leadbitter says: 

"Disagreements during code reviews are by no means uncommon, and in a lot of instances are a natural, and often beneficial, part of the process.  

In this example, be completely honest and transparent to your recruitment consultant about how you feel the interview went – they should have a good relationship with the company and be able to have an open dialogue with them regarding interview feedback.  

The interviewer may actually respect your argument and be positive about your application, but if they are not, a good recruitment consultant can persuade the interviewer to give you a second chance." 


Are you a technologist looking to make the move Downunder? Find out more about how Client Server Australia can help your next career move.