Career Counselling and Career Guidance | I'M HIRED

Career Advice blog supporting you with the job hunt to secure a career change or find the perfect work life balance.

How to Deal with Rejection

How to Deal with Rejection

How to deal with rejection - clue isn't not a tub of ice cream!

You've ticked every box, spent hours on the perfect CV, you aced the telephone interview, stood out in the group interview, asked all the right questions and wrote a personal unique thank you note ... you waited and waited for feedback and then it came. You didn't get the job!


This was probably your first question and you're no doubt frustrated and ready to give up. 
Unfortunately, in the recruitment process you are going to have times where you don't secure the position but remember it is not always personal. Most employers are currently getting approximately 118 applications per role which means inevitability not all applicants who are right for the role can get through.
Mindset is a huge part of the recruitment process and this is even more applicable when you get the feedback that you haven't been successful. Always remember you didn't fail instead this is just a setback and you need to stay motivated to try again. 

Interview Feedback

Getting Feedback

It is so important to get feedback from every unsuccessful application you send off. If the interviewer hasn't openly given feedback then definitely ask or send a polite email asking how you could improve next time. 
This will help you pinpoint the areas where you might be struggling. For example if you got through the sifting stage and the telephone interview then you can assume you've done well in those sections however if you didn't pass the face to face interview that is probably where your prep needs revisiting and needs more work. 

Make note of all the feedback your given, whether it was an answer to a particular questions or the image you presented to the employer. Sometimes we do things in interviews completely unconsciously so being aware of this can help you try to avoid it next time. (For example some applicants can actually come across uninterested or even not bothered in an interview but really that is just their way they present themselves when they are nervous.) Knowing this can help you to attempt to train yourself out of doing that; potentially through completing mock interviews to reduce the nerves. 

What to do next

What to do next?

Try, Try and Try again. I couldn't make it clearer that the recruitment process might not be the most difficult process but it is absolutely one of the most time consuming tasks (ever heard the phrase finding a job is a job in itself - I fully agree.
You're going to need to spend a lot of your time focusing on finding a new job but always have your end goal in mind to keep you driven and just remember that when you are successful in getting that job, you won't need to do this again straight away (like my mum would always say this is a means to an end.

Job search; reassess

Should you reassess?

As I mentioned you should always keep your goal in mind and don't just give up after the first huddle but there is probably a time where you should reevaluate whether what you are aiming for is achievable. Don't panic I am not suggesting anyone should just settle at a certain point and take second best but the job market is ever changing and if you have been searching for a while things may have changed so your spec might have to alter too. 

Sit down and really think about all the reasons why you might have been unsuccessful on several occasions (this is much easier if you have your interview feedback.) Now this isn't supposed to be about criticising yourself and picking out every made up fault you think you have, this needs to be constructive. 
Like ticking off your shopping list you need to ensure every box in the recruitment process is checked; revisit your CV and make sure it was detailed enough, ask yourself did you go the extra mile and send that thank you note or send them your portfolio of work? If you start seeing some boxes un-ticked then these are the areas to spend a little bit more time on next time round.

What are you worth?

It's not everyone's favourite subject but another key aspect to consider is the salary you peg yourself at; especially if you have been searching for a while. Now I am definitely not suggesting that if you have been searching for a while then drop £10,000 off your asking price but I am saying you need to do your research (knowledge is power all over again!
So what am I referring to when I tell you to do your research? Well certain job values can go up and down in a similar way to housing markets. If a job is in high demand by employers due to a lack of qualified applicants then the salaries employers pay will be much higher. Simply if you have been out of the game for a while it's worth having a look online to see what the average is for that sector; you can do this on most job board and you can even break it down by region as certain place such as London will pay more. 

Always remember recruitment is not a game of quantity so don't measure your success at the end of the day by how many applications you have forwarded through but instead measure your successful on how tailored you made each applications. Yes doing this is going to take a lot more time than pressing applying on every job on the job boards but your ratio to success will be much greater.

Top Tip Alert

  1. Put aside some serious time into your job search. (surely you can miss one night out or just not binge watch that show on netflix for one weekend.)
  2. Ask for help; it's much easier than doing it all alone. Reach out to your network, whether that be to review your CV or go through a mock interview with you. 
  3. Research until you know as much about the company as the CEO. Well maybe you don't need to know that much but you should know the ins and outs of a company. Also, try not to have verbal diarrhoea instead feed your research into your answers throughout the interview not just madly at the end.
  4. Get detailed feedback after every interview but just remember due to the volume of applications received for every job it is unlikely you will get feedback after just submitting an application.
  5. Always remain enthusiastic and proactive in your job search. It's so easy to be demotivated when you haven't been success first time round but use it as a learning curve and try again.
Remember to stay positive when you are searching for a new career and never give up, in the words of Elbert Hubbard:

“There is no failure except in no longer trying.” 

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