Do you have an interesting career path that would make you a compelling podcast guest? Perhaps you took a different path into tech than the “normal” four year degree? Are you a self-taught developer? Have you worked as a developer and left the role for other parts of tech? Our show is about careers in tech, not just tech. We are looking for guests who have stories to tell about the ups and downs of their career in tech:
- how you found your path
- what your role is about
- how you’ve grown in your career
- why you’ve switched jobs or ventured out on your own
- the tradeoffs you’ve made between career, family and personal happiness.
We are happy to talk about technical topics in the context of a guest’s career, but we are not looking for stories just on a tech topic, as there are plenty of those shows out there to cover that area. We are particularly interested in people who have come into tech in non-traditional ways (e.g. self taught/boot camp coder, non-tech degreed) or work in roles that fly under the radar or aren’t as well known outside of the industry. We are also interested in developers who have left full time coding roles to pursue other areas of tech, like sales engineering or customer support.
How should I prepare to be on the show?
No prep work beyond being able to tell the story of your career is required to be a guest other than making sure you have the equipment outlined below. Questions will be focused on key inflection points in your career, the lessons you’ve learned navigating the world of work and the key skills involved in your role. Browse the sample questions tab on this page to see some questions you might be asked.
What equipment do I need?
You need three things to record a successful podcast with us:
- A high quality headset with microphone and, ideally, noise cancelling. You phone headset is probably good enough
- A high speed Internet connection
- A quiet room where you won’t be interrupted. We love dogs, but they don’t make for good podcast guests, so please take care of them first!
When will my episode be published?
We typically record episodes well in advance, so it may take 4-6 weeks or more to publish your episode. We will notify you the week before publication.
Do I need my employer’s permission?
We typically don’t ask you any questions about your current employer as we are focused on you and your career, so you shouldn’t need their permission. However, if you feel more comfortable getting their permission, go for it! If you are comfortable talking about your current company, let us know.
Curious what we might ask?
Below are a list of sample questions we have asked guests on prior episodes of Develomentor. Your interviewer will prepare a list of questions specifically for you based off of research they do on your background (via LinkedIn, your resume, etc.)
- Let’s start by having you introduce yourself and your career.
- What are some of the key skills required to be a product manager?
- I often encourage people getting into software to pick an open source project they feel some affinity towards and then roll up their sleeves and find ways to contribute. You’ve spent a good amount of your career using and contributing to open source. Can you talk about the impact of open source has been on your career?
- Career paths for software engineers often seem to go one of two routes: stay technical and become a lead and then an architect or go the “people” route: director of engineering, VP of Eng. This question of “should I go into people management” is often asked by engineers as they gain more experience in their career. In the book you have this great section on the imagined life of an individual contributor vs a manager that really hit home for me. Can you give some more insight into those tradeoffs?
- You’ve stayed pretty focused on doing technical work over the years, moving up into architecture and leadership roles, but not into management. What has been the guiding factor in taking that approach?
- Looking at your background, I see you did an MBA. Is an MBA required to be a VC? What is it about the MBA that helps you do your job?
- How has your arts/visual design training benefited you in your technical roles?
- What are some of the key skills required to be a VC these days, especially given how fast technology is moving?
- What’s been the most surprising thing about your career to date?
- Where can our listeners best connect with you if they want to learn more?