Why Knowing Where You Want To Be Helps You Produce Code That Aces the Interview

February 16, 2016

How Does Knowing Where You Want To Be Help You Produce Better Code?

I already went into how knowing what you want can save you time and money in a previous post, so I won’t rehash it.

Instead, I’d like to add to that post by talking about how it can help you produce better code.

City Targeting

By focusing on the city and/or state you want to relocate to, you can then decide if that city even has jobs that support your skills.

For example, the city of Irvine, California tends to have “software enterprise” type jobs (think big corporation). So briefly browsing jobs, I saw demand for Java skills. That means if I want to prepare coding projects that help me show I’m a good fit there, I’ll be coding in Java.

Context Switching

For me personally, it’s always been easier to focus on one thing at a time. I like to avoid context switching when I can. So by focusing on one city and one skillset, I can focus on preparing coding samples or interviews that require a specific skillset, say Java.

Then all my coding samples will be in Java and I won’t have to make the context switch of doing a project in NodeJS. While you might argue it’s not that big of a switch (particularly if you’ve been programming for a while), if you’re new, doing whatever you can to simplify the job hunt and preserve your mental energy will give you better odds of landing the job (because you’ll do a better job).

This is a bit of an oversimplication of course, as coding samples or interviews may ask totally different things, but the whole point is to keep your headspace as focused as you can.

Saving Time for Lifestyle Research

When you keep it simple, especially after a long day at a full time job, you’ll do a great job and have a bit more time to research the other things that make living in your new city worthwhile – cost of living, where the local parks are, etc.

Because if you’re like most people, there’s more to life than work. You want to enjoy the new city you are living in.

After all you moved for the job, but it’s the lifestyle that makes you happy.