March 15th, 2021Ethan Ding

Mocking without Mentorship

Mocking with other students is like the blind leading the blind

I did 40 product management mock interviews in the summer leading up to senior recruiting. I had partners I mocked with every week, I had partners I mocked with as one-offs. I had a rotating door of people I tried to practice interviewing with. We'd mock product analytics, switch it up to design, and then strategy. I thought I was the most over-prepared person in the world. I proceeded to land 0 offers.

Mocking with other students is like the blind leading the blind. I'm just as qualified to give advice to someone else as I am to get a role, which apparently I wasn't. It's impossible to get mock interview experience with senior product managers who are also hiring; why would they ever want to mock with a college student?

That was the predicament I found myself in. In my first mentorship with Tyson on the Edith platform, we ran through a lightweight product question. I got feedback that I'd never heard before. What I'd previously thought was decisiveness was interpreted as recklessness. What I thought were reasonable jumps in logic were interpreted as an incoherent thought process. I got actionable feedback for the first time in a long time that moved me forward instead of pointing me in a random direction without any sense of true north.

I've recently accepted an offer to be the fourth product manager at a startup after I graduate.

Ready To Get Started?

Ethan Ding

Edith Fellow. UC Berkeley IEOR. Incoming PM at Tackle.

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