Step by Step Learning Plan for Coding Interview

Let’s discuss something important: how to prepare a learning strategy to achieve interview success? Here is a step-by-step guided strategy:

Step 1: Building a long term motivation

The first step would be to develop a long-term desire to achieve the target. We should think — why do I want to accomplish this? How will it impact life and career in the long run?

Step 2: Calculating the big chunk of Preparation time

Suppose we have six months’ available duration with a commitment of 5 hours/daily. Then the total time = 30 x 6 x 5 = 900 Hours. Let’s do the round-off and say we have 1000 preparation hours in 6 months. Similarly, we have 2000 preparation hours in 1 year or 500 preparation hours in 3 months. This would help us to customize the preparation strategy based on our needs.

Step 3: Understanding the Important Syllabus

Now prepare a list of the syllabus topics relevant for the interview. Our goal must be to cover at least 80% syllabus. Divide the syllabus into independent topics and allocate a good chunk of time from the above calculated time. Also, map and prioritise the topics based on their strength and weaknesses. A topic that requires more time should get more time.

Step 4: Identifying the best Learning Resources

Do critical research to collect helpful learning resources like books, blogs, talks, pdf, reports, courses, etc. Internet could be handy for this activity. We should follow the authentic sources and organize them according to the syllabus.

Step 5: Starting the Continuous Learning

Now pick the topics according to the priority order. If we have allocated 75 hours for any topic, our aim should be to learn the critical concepts and solve fundamental and advanced problems asked during interviews. Keep doing the 6th step for the remaining topics. One more thing — Never forget to prepare a good self note, which could help in doing fast revision later.

Step 6: Learning with Collaboration

An excellent collaborative environment can work as a catalyst. So try to build a group of 2–3 people who have similar goals and schedule a discussion on each topic. We should work as a mentor or observers for each other and help to bridge the gap of strengths and weaknesses.

Step 7: Doing a critical Progress Review

After completing each topic at a given time, doing a critical review could help us understand the progress. We should answer these questions — what is the further scope of improvement in the topic? What are the most important concepts to keep in mind? What is the current level of our problem-solving ability? I would suggest making a note and rating each topic on a scale of 1 to 10.

Step 8: Preparing an Interview Strategy

It is a crucial stage where we need to analyze the different interview scenarios and note down the ideas that could help us perform better. We should prepare a unique strategy for the initial 15–30 minutes to gain confidence. The best idea would be — learn from the mistakes and push forward to perform best in the defined time. Here are some essential interview tips :

  • Practice good nonverbal communication
  • Read the job description more than twice
  • Research the industry and company
  • Prepare for common interview questions
  • Score a success in the first five minutes
  • Make your sales pitch clear
  • Speak the correct body language
  • Have smart questions for the interviewers
  • Be positive, authentic, and truthful in your answers
  • Stay optimistic and prepare for challenges
  • Never gives up!

Finally, develop a belief that this is not an end, just one great attempt. A burning desire, hard work, and consistency are the keys. Enjoy learning, Enjoy thinking!

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