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Dan Ford

Principal Software Developer
Former Principal SDE @ AWS with 15+ years experience as a software engineer, interviewer, and mentor
United States of America Active this week Usually responds in half a day


$240 / month

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2 calls per month (50min/call)

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Hi there! 👋

My name is Dan, and I'm a freelance software engineer, technology consultant, and coach/mentor based in Seattle, Washington, USA.

I spent 15 years working as a professional software engineer (most of it for Amazon and AWS, up to the Principal / Staff level), then in 2022 I decided to strike out on my own with a one-man consulting firm. Right now, I work part-time on projects that interest me, do some mentoring/coaching/interview prep on the side, and the rest of the time is spent with my family (super cool wife and two awesome kids!) and hobbies.

During my time at Amazon/AWS, I participated in over 1,000 hiring panels as a "Bar Raiser". This special role meant that not only was I interviewing each candidate, but I did all the pre-interview planning (topics for each interviewer to cover), led the hiring panel discussion, guided the group to a hire/no-hire decision, and ultimately I could "veto" a candidate if I felt they were not right for Amazon in the long-term. The Bar Raiser program was Amazon's way of keeping the high hiring bar consistent across the company as it grew larger, and serving as a check against the natural incentive of a hiring manager to aggressively fill their open headcount.

As a Bar Raiser, I also conducted "behavioral interviews" in addition to technical interviews within my own expertise (software engineering), meaning I was talking to each candidate, diving into their past experience, and evaluating how well they fit Amazon's "leadership principles" in a broad way. This meant I interviewed a broad range of candidates in addition to SDEs, such as SDE-Ts, QA Engineers, Technical Program Managers, Engineering Managers, Product Managers, and many others, from entry-level up to Principal / Staff (L4-L7).

I now leverage this unique experience to do a lot of "interview coaching" on the other side of the hiring desk, helping candidates to prepare for technical and behavioral interviews.

Besides my monthly mentorship plan, I also offer a standalone "Software Interview Preparation" package (under Sessions). This may be a better fit than the monthly mentorship if you have a short-term need to brush up on interviewing, but still allows us to dive deeper and cover more material than a single one-off session.

Feel free to send me an inquiry if you have any questions!

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