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Handling Rejection

We have all been there at some point, the dreaded rejection letter, email, or phone call. It is never a pleasant experience, particularly if you have faced several rejections so far in your job search, it can be easy to feel dejected and disheartened.

You may have been well prepared for the interview and felt that it went very positively, yet the final outcome was not you were expecting. This can be frustrating.

It is important to remember that the way you handle rejection is just as important as the skills on your CV when it comes to securing a new role. If you allow rejection to knock your confidence and make you doubt your abilities, it could negatively affect your performance in future interviews.

If a rejection email does come into your inbox, here a few things to remember to help you remain positive, optimistic, and motivated.

Don’t take it personal.

It is easy to take rejection to heart and blame your abilities or interview technique on your failure to get the job. Try not to read too much into your rejection, these decisions are rarely based solely on your performance. If you prepared fully and tried your best, there is little else you could have done.

Many of the reasons behind hiring decisions will not be made apparent to you. You may have performed excellently, but there could be other factors at play.

If you didn’t get the job, there may have been a very strong internal candidate who is already familiar with the business, or another candidate with slightly more relevant experience than you. These are things you cannot change, they are beyond your control.

Never assume that everything you are doing is wrong because you did not get the job. It is perfectly acceptable to politely ask the recruiter or employer for more detailed feedback about your interview in order to help you improve. 

Interview feedback can sometimes be bland and unhelpful, so do seek out other genuinely useful feedback where possible. You could seek the advice of an HR professional or try out a mock interview in order to practice and get some constructive criticism.

Recruiters always follow up on interviews and give feedback to candidates wherever possible. However, we are only able to pass on the feedback that is provided to us  which is not always forthcoming from busy employers.

Approach each new job opportunity with a fresh perspective and a positive attitude. Tailor your CV to best match a new opportunity and fully research and prepare for a new interview. 

If you made mistakes or felt unprepared in your last interview learn from this, but do not keep it at the forefront of your mind, it will only make you nervous. 

Every client and hiring manager are different and will have a different view of the ‘ideal candidate.’ Keep a fresh approach while remaining true to your personality and experience.

Your confidence can take a hit when you get a rejection, so it is important to work hard at keeping your morale and motivation levels buoyant.

Especially if you are not in current employment, it is a good idea to keep your skills sharpened and your experience up to date. 

If a recent interview didn’t go your way, don’t worry! There’s plenty more jobs out there.