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I applied to a company. They recommended me to a senior level position which I'm highly unqualified for. What should I do?

Background.

I've only been professional working for less than a year and I just wanted a change of scenery. I put my name in for some new grad/entry level role at this company. I received two phone interview requests with them. Both of which I was moved up to the senior role which are expecting both higher levels of education and technical expertise. While these positions are similar to my current role, they are in a different technology.

I tried the first interview and was slaughtered. The manager probably knew after 30 minutes that he wasn't going to and he sat around for another 50 minutes checking his boxes.

I don't want to go into the second interview and accomplish the same. But I also can't learn or fake learn enough to pass. What should I do?

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I don't want to go into the second interview and accomplish the same. But I also can't learn or fake learn enough to pass. What should I do?

You don't really know what will happen in the second interview. You suspect the same as what happened in the first, but we never really know.

Clearly you can just attend the interview, see what happens, and take it as a learning experience. That's what I would do.

Or you could just decline and continue with your entry level search.

You might wish to follow up with the folks who moved you up to the senior level and attempt to find out why they did that. Perhaps they saw something in you that you don't. Perhaps your salary requirements were such that the senior level was the only place where you could fit financially. Or perhaps they were just confused. Either way, it might help with your future interviews if you knew.

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  • I've worked at two companies that considered current students to be juniors degree holders to be a higher level of employee. It may just be the internal classification of roles that seems odd at first glance, as well. – JRodge01 Mar 6 at 15:32
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    Keep in mind that you can end the second interview early as well. You are under no obligation to sit through an unpleasant experience, if it becomes one. – InSpaceICanScreamAsLoudAsIWant Mar 7 at 17:13
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I don't want to go into the second interview and accomplish the same. But I also can't learn or fake learn enough to pass. What should I do?

If based on the phone and in person interviews you feel that this is a role at this company that would not work for you then you can respectfully decline the second interview and thank them for their time and consideration.

Just keep in mind that while you may not have "senior" level experience, they may have seen something positive in your previous work or how you answered their questions to consider you for a better position. Ultimately, however, if you do not feel comfortable with the company and what your role will be then you should not proceed.

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