5 Detrimental Interview Mistakes That Are Holding You Back From Getting Your First Developer Job

Could you be failing your interviews due to one of these detrimental mistakes?

Tomasz Dobrowolski
4 min readApr 28


Photo by Razvan Chisu on Unsplash

In an interview, any slip-up will cost you a job opportunity.

Throughout my time as a Software Engineer, I have spotted a pattern of mistakes that Junior Developers make that instantly puts them out of contention for a job.

Here are the five detrimental mistakes junior developers must avoid when interviewing:

Mistake 1. Quitting halfway through a technical interview

Technical interviews are purposely hard.

Assessing a junior developer using LeetCode style questions, is like asking a lorry driver to complete a time-trial race in a sports car as part of their interview.

It’s overkill. LeetCode questions do not represent the work a developer faces at their day job.

In my first five technical interviews, I gave up the test halfway through. I felt defeated by the questions and my ability.

In hindsight, this was a mistake.

What to do instead:

Attempt the solution, and if you run out of time, just submit your non-working code.

Most employers are just looking to see how you handle difficult situations.

Employers know junior developers are not experts. They are searching for a candidate with the right mindset and potential.

Mistake 2. Not applying for junior roles based on the required experience

You see it on every job board:

‘Junior Front-End Developer: 2 years experience in React required’

Most employers do not expect you to have all the experience listed.

They are just advertising what their ideal candidate looks like.

But guess what? Most ideal candidates with two years of experience are not applying for junior developer jobs.



Tomasz Dobrowolski

I break down Software Engineering and Tech concepts | Backend Engineer 🐘