Join us for YC’s Work at a Startup Expo on 6/29 in MV


Y Combinator is hosting our annual Work at a Startup Expo on June 29th at our Mountain View office. The event is invite-only and for engineers who are interested in meeting YC founders and exploring their next role.

The founders of Segment, Sift Science and Checkr – as well as 40 other YC companies – will be there to meet you and talk about their companies and share open positions – from junior to senior eng and eng management, full stack, mobile, data science and ML.

The event is like Demo Day, but for engineers instead of investors. Doors open at 1PM, with opening remarks from YC President Geoff Ralston, followed by pitch/presentations from the startups, and finally an Open House to chat with founders in a casual setting. (Casual dress; snacks & beverages will be provided.)

We recently opened applications to attend here:

Thanks for your time, and hope you see you there!


What makes a good engineering hire for an early stage YC company?

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A lot of things that make good engineers obviously apply to engineers at startups. That said, here are a couple things that you’d want to look for in particular:

  • Ability to unblock oneself, particularly in ambiguous situations. At startups in particular, employees may not be given as much direction or have as much clarity on what the next step necessarily is. People who can work through the ambiguity and continue making progress – especially if supervision/management is not readily available – are particularly useful at startups.

  • Versatility in technologies & able to adapt/learn quickly as needed. Most startups have a lot of things that need to get done, from building the app to setting up back-end messaging/infrastructure to front-end design (within reason). People who can switch relatively easily or learn quickly are particularly useful to have at a startup vs. people with only a very specialized skill set and inability to learn/adapt.

  • Strong team player w/ great attitude. In small teams, its key to have people build each other up, step in where there are gaps, and are focused on getting the job done for the team. Brilliant jerks bring down the team and can be terrible early hires.

FWIW, I prefer to use experiential interviewing for the non-technical aspects of the role. Focusing on how a candidate has behaved in the past is a good indication of how they will be at your company. So asking how they solved tricky interpersonal problems or overcame hardship is better than asking hypothetical questions of what “might” a person do in a situation.

More on the subject here: