Doing mock interviews isn’t bad if you’re looking to evaluate where you’re at.
It tells you “You did well on this; you didn’t do well on this” in one particular context, and then it also gives you some practice actually going through the motions of doing an interview.
But a mock interview is not going to help you learn how to solve problems more effectively. It’s not going to help you learn what are your recurring mistakes so that you can improve over time.
First, the person interviewing you is not necessarily a trained interview coach.
While they are good at evaluating someone's ability to interview, that doesn’t mean they can give you advice for how to improve. They’ll give you feedback on your interview, then it’s your responsibility to actually take that feedback and figure out what to do with it. And it can be very difficult to actually figure out how to do something meaningful with that feedback.
Further, you only receive feedback at the end of the interview. They won’t stop and help you make course corrections as you go, which would allow you to understand in the moment what you’re doing wrong and get that feeling under your belt of what it feels like to do things correctly.
To give you an example, some people start coding right at the beginning of the interview. They sit down, they hear the problem, and they immediately write some code. And that’s a terrible way to approach things because that makes it much much harder to really conceptualize the problem.
A trained interview coach would stop you and correct it. The Google engineer conducting your mock interview won’t.
That’s why in 6WIR we focus on actually improving your coding interview process. In Module 2, I’ll give you my step-by-step problem solving framework that applies in every interview you will do. In Module 5, I’ll give you specific strategies for dealing with your interviewer and actually asking the right question. And after all that, you can check out one of the bonuses where I give you recordings of actual mock interviews.
Second, you’re usually only doing one interview with these people.
They’re not seeing you over time and so they can’t evaluate whether the prep you’re doing is helping you improve, and if so how efficiently.
To get around this, you’d need to do at least 3 or 4 mock interviews with the same engineer, and the cost of that adds up really quickly.
Third, mock interviews are less effective and more time consuming than targeted daily exercises. It’s like learning to play a song by just playing through the entire song over and over versus slowing down and focussing on the hard parts. Yes, if you do enough mock interviews eventually you’ll get good just by rote repetition. But that could take 6 months and this course will take 6 weeks.
In short, mock interviews are useful but not sufficient as a standalone tool.
They give you a snapshot, but not necessarily a direction or path for improvement. Just a true/false value for “did I pass this particular interview?”
That said, we understand that mock interviews are a valuable addition to the interview prep process, and while we don’t include mock interviews in the course, we’ve partnered with Interviewing.io to offer you a special deal on the mock interviews they conduct. This is an exclusive discount that is only available to 6WIR students.