Killer Interview Question: Give An Example Of An Analytically Difficult Problem You’ve Solved

Killer Interview Question: Give An Example Of An Analytically Difficult Problem You’ve Solved
Facebook may have decided that you shouldn’t see the news, but we think you deserve to be in the know with Lifehacker Australia’s content. To sign up for our daily newsletter covering the latest news, hacks and reviews, head HERE. For a running feed of all our stories, follow us on Twitter HERE. Or you can bookmark the Lifehacker Australia homepage to visit whenever you need a fix.

This week’s KIQ comes from Laszlo Bock, Google’s senior vice president of people operations. It’s a typical example of the behavioural-based questions the technology giant has begun to embrace in recent years. In other words, no more pointless riddles about filling jumbo jets with golf balls.

Analytical problem picture from Shutterstock

Google used to be famous for presenting job candidates with fiendish brainteasers that primarily served to entertain the interviewer. It has since ditched this approach in favour of structured behavioral interviews, with questions like the one above. This creates what Bock calls a “consistent rubric” for how candidates are assessed.

“The interesting thing about the behavioural interview is that when you ask somebody to speak to their own experience, and you drill into that, you get two kinds of information,” Bock explained in an interview with The New York Times.

“One is you get to see how they actually interact in a real-world situation, and the valuable ‘meta’ information you get about the candidate is a sense of what they consider to be difficult.”

[Via The New York Times]


  • I work in IT and don’t have any “analytical” problems to solve…most of mine are configuration or bug fixes..#badquestion

    • You’ve never had a particular config fault or bug that has taken extra time and effort to identify and resolve?

      • Maybe its just my interpretation of the original question, but “Analytically Difficult” sounds like it needs to have something to do with math/science/analytics/big data/etc. Not really a really really hard bug I found and fixed.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!