The thing I love about job interviews is that they are bi-directional.
As much as the employer chooses the employee, the employee chooses the employer. This is particularly true when teams are small as in VC or when job markets are as tight as this one is.
Acknowledging this bi-directional-ness comes in the form of allowing candidates to analyze you. Sometimes it includes wooing, like dinners or interview days. Always it allows for asking questions. As an interviewer, you learn about a candidate by what questions they ask. What topics do they gravitate to? How do their prior experiences color the lens through which they look at you? What are their values and interests?
One of the candidates that we hired for our analyst role at CV asked me a good one.
“What are the common things that every successful analyst does?”
I like this question. It’s not about background or skill sets or prerequisites. It’s about putting in the work. Doing the actions.
People that are good at work are good at these things
There are three things you can do to excel at their first job. Three things, executed well, will make you successful. At least, if you master these three things, you’re ready for your second job (or promotion). The caveat is that these three things must come alongside a good attitude and humility.
Of note, these are also mastered in order. You cannot be great at step two without first being great at step one, and so on. But, the framework is simple enough that you can practice them all, anytime.
These three things are completed work, so what, and agency.
Completed work is finished product. It is free of revisions, unanswered questions, and half-baked ideas.
It is not following the “letter of the law” but rather the “spirit of the law.”
For example, a task often implies another. Completed work includes finishing the explicit and implicit tasks. To illustrate, I remember when we were children and my parents asked us to clean or help with chores. Vacuuming was a common…