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The 50 questions you want to ask when applying for a technical evangelist role

27 Oct 2014
9 Oct 2020
5 minutes

Since I’m looking for my next challenge, I’m discussing with many people about possible roles in their company. Most of those jobs are Technical Evangelist one, which makes sense from my background, and from what I like to do for a living. I created a list of 50 important questions or information I would like to have when I’m talking with possible employers. The goal is to have answers to all those questions, in no particular order, at the end of the interview process. I wanted to share that list with you as it could be very handy if you are looking for an opportunity in the evangelism world. Keep in mind that some of them are general questions as no matter the type of job you are looking for, you need to know the basic stuff, but there is a big focus on evangelism.

  1. Which product(s) or service(s) will I evangelize?
  2. If there is many programming languages involve, do I need to focus on one or all of them?
  3. What is the enterprise’s culture?
  4. Is the career path about meritocracy or seniority?
  5. What is the team’s culture?
  6. Is it a junior, senior, principal, lead or manager role?
  7. What is the career path for that role (possibilities to grow inside the company)?
  8. Is it a remote job or do I need to move to a specific location? If so, is there a moving package?
  9. If I need to move to a specific location, do I need to go to the office?
  10. How the rest of the company sees the work of the evangelist team? Do they understand, and welcome such work?
  11. If it’s a remote role, how many people on the team are remote versus people working at the office?
  12. If it’s a remote role, is there any issue if I move elsewhere by myself? Where would I still be able to work for you if I move elsewhere?
  13. If all the members of the team are not in the same city, how often do they meet in person?
  14. How are you defining the role of a Technical Evangelist?
  15. What are the goals the team had for this fiscal year?
  16. What would be the perfect starting date for the new employee?
  17. Would you be able to wait a bit longer after the perfect starting date? If so, how long?
  18. Are you expecting an evangelist to work on other tasks while at conferences or to focus on the conference itself (presenting, attending presentations, networking…)?
  19. How much travel time compared to other tasks?
  20. Are you looking for a developer who will evangelize or an evangelist who has technical skills?
  21. What is the target market for the product or service I will evangelize?
  22. What is the territory I will cover?
  23. What is the salary range?
  24. If it’s a startup, is there any equity? If so, how much percentage?
  25. What is the salary revision process and within which percentage range?
  26. In addition to the salary, what are the benefits (health insurances, 401k, gym membership, cell phone & internet payments…)?
  27. How many weeks of vacations per year?
  28. If there is a bonus, what is the structure of the bonus (percentage range, and decision criteria)?
  29. What hardware will I get?
  30. Do I need to work from 8 to 5, or is it up to me to create my schedule?
  31. What is the management style of the actual manager?
  32. What is the latitude I have to achieve my assigned goals?
  33. How will you attest my progress toward my goals (1:1 meetings, formal reports every week or so…)?
  34. What are the politics on travelling (food expense limits, flying economy or premium economy…)?
  35. While travelling, is there any issue if I extend my stay if I pay for my travel & expense for those extra days (ex.: time off to visit new cities)?
  36. What is the average time an employee stay on the team or how long the actual team is working together?
  37. Who are the actual members on the team?
  38. What kinds of skills or personality would complete the actual team well?
  39. Is there any specific project or program I’ll be responsible off?
  40. Is there any latitude to bring new ideas on how to achieve the team goals or is everything set in stone?
  41. Is the evangelist team part of the marketing or engineering department?
  42. Is there a good relationship between the product team and the evangelist one?
  43. Is the role involving being a spokesperson with (technical) media?
  44. How the product or service is doing right now?
  45. How is the relationship with the developer community?
  46. Why did you approach me or accepted to make an interview with me?
  47. How do I stand compared to the other potential new employee?
  48. Is there any reorganization or management’s change in the air?
  49. What are you expecting from me in the first three months? In one year? In other words, how do you define success for this role?
  50. Are you OK with my personal style and brand (example: jeans & t-shirts)?

Yes, it seems a lot, but there is a way to get answers to those questions in a non-annoying way! If you are a Technical Evangelist or looking for that type of role, let me know if I’m missing crucial questions or if that list was helpful to you!

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