Case Interview Practice

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Email:

I wanted to share a case interview practice suggestion.

Thank you for your emails, and the website.  You have been very generous with your time.  When I land a job, I intend to write a big (well big for me anyway) check to "KidPower".

By the way, I have benefited very much from your "Look Over My Shoulder®" (LOMS) program.

One of my case practice partners told me about it and we have both (separately) purchased it.

I want to let you know how I am using it, as it may be a useful methodology for some of your other clients.

My friend actually purchased LOMS before I did.  So, he has been giving me the cases which you used for LOMS and I have been recording these practice sessions (using Audacity... a "total awesome" freeware program for recording audio on alaptop/pc).

Once I have my practice session, I then listen to the example sessions from LOMS.  Then I listen to my own performance on the case.  This has been very helpful for me.

I realize that this methodology requires that one has a partner who has just listened/studied the LOMS cases without actually doing the case.  I fortunately have that situation.

Yet, others could use this approach by trading off among the cases you provide in LOMS.

Once again, thank you very much for being so generous with your time.

My Comments:

Thanks for passing along the suggestion. I think the recording of practice sessions and the subsequent analysis of your response is a great idea.

In the middle of a live interview, it's very hard to be self-aware and critical of your decisions. It is the review of your response after the fact that can help engineer bad habits out of you.

I wish I had thought of this when I was preparing. The closest I ever came to this was taking a public speaking course in college, which included video tape analysis. It's one thing to know what to do, it's another thing to see yourself (literally) doing it... or in my case not doing it correctly.  I got better so much faster and when I did make mistakes, I was very aware of it -- and it made it much easier to correct.

Also if you look at the language patterns and thought patterns of the candidates' interviews in Look Over My Shoulder®, you'll notice that there absolutely IS a pattern of how candidates dig themselves into a "hole" that's difficult to recover from.

In particular, the point at which a candidate is "stuck" is not where the mistake was made. Being stuck is simply a symptom of a mistake made much earlier in the interview -- 10-20 minutes earlier. (See this email from a reader who was stuck on a case question.)

The problem is in the middle of the interview, a candidate can not see this connection (though they all universally get it after the fact, when they've had some time to reflect on the approach they took).

For other suggestions on case interview practice, see my free resources on the members-only section of the website at www.caseinterview.com .

Additional Resources

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1 comment… add one
  • Clyde Atkins Sep 4, 2013, 4:32 pm

    Hey Victor,

    I’ve heard peers refer to a forum or discussion page on caseinterview.com where you can meet other students interested in prepping for cases.

    Can you direct me to that page?

    Thanks.

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