About the company
Thoughtbot is a collective of small studios. They are designers and developers working face-to-face with local clients to bring clarity to nascent prodect ideas.
Thoughtbot takes applications with a few extra questions to get a better feel of you as a candidate. Not only that, but they also anonymize it in anyway possible to give an objective score. There are experience specific questions and openended dialogues, such as:
- What will it be like for us to work with you?
- Our goal when interviewing is to see you at your strongest and best, not prove your weaknesses. So, how should we interview you? Share one question or technique that we could include to help show you at your very best.
📞 Phone screen
Thoughtbot then sends an email to set up an interview with the hiring manager. The hiring manager looks for someone that everyone would like to work with, potentially has the skill set for the role, are a good match for their values, and will make thoughtbot better by being there. Hopefully afterward you also feel excited about thoughtbot.
📱 Technical phone screen
After the non-technical interview, the next step is the technical interview. Thoughtbot has standard questions that each candidate goes through. There aren't puzzles or code challenges. Instead, thoughtbot wants to review actual work you have done, by having you talk about the design process, system architecting, and coding involved to reach the final result.
The final step for candidates is to visit the thoughtbot office for a day. Your bills for flights and three nights of hotels will be paid. On that day, you will pair program with one of their developers in the morning and another in the afternoon. This is the way for you to experience what the company is like.
Aside from technical skill, during the entire interview process, thoughtbot looks for character strengths like enthusiasm (invigorates others), focus (pays attention, resists distractions, remembers directions), composure (remains calm when critiqued, doesn't interrupt), gratitude (shows appreciation), curiosity (eager to explore, asks questions to understand, actively listens), optimism (gets over frustrations quickly), grit (finishes what they start, doesn't get blocked), emotional intelligence (demonstrates respect for others’ feelings, knows when and how to include others), humor (likes to laugh, makes others smile), and appreciation of beauty (notices and appreciates beauty and excellence).
To be hired, the candidate must get a unanimous “yes” from the existing teammates with whom they interacted.