You perfected your resume, gave the best interview of your life, and just when you thought the offer call from the recruiter would come–it doesn’t. You either never hear back from the recruiter again, you receive the dreaded “thanks, but no thanks” email, or (if you are lucky) you get feedback on why you were not selected for the job.
Everyone has faced rejection at one time or another. It isn’t pleasant, especially when it was a role or company that you were really excited about, but it is a natural part of the job-hunting process. Staying motivated after radio silence or an outright “no” can be difficult, but it is necessary to dust yourself off and get back on the saddle if you want to land a job.
Here are some coping strategies you can implement to become a stronger candidate going forward:
Ask for Feedback and Take Action
If you haven’t heard back from the recruiter or the hiring manager within a week or two after your interview (or within the time frame he/she gave you), it’s perfectly acceptable to follow-up and ask if there are any updates. If the recruiter responds and lets you know that you will not be moving forward, ask for feedback on what you could do to improve.
Receive the feedback with open ears and take action on any of your stumbling blocks. Were you late for the interview? Make sure to leave extra early the next time you have an interview scheduled. Did you come across as uninterested or cold? Practice open body language, give a firm handshake, smile, and make eye contact the next time around. Do you not have enough experience in an important technical skill? Take training or sign up for a class to hone in on your skills.
Focus on Your Goals and Keep Applying
Rejection can sometimes be easier to swallow if you know it was in pursuit of something that really matters to you. Focus on your long-term goals and use them to re-energize your search. Keep applying to the jobs you really want, and don’t count yourself out of future opportunities just because you’ve been told “no” before.
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
While it’s a good idea to reflect on what you could have done differently to be successful, overthinking and over-analyzing every minuscule detail of where you could have gone wrong is not a productive way to better yourself. Rejection stings, but it is a normal part of life. Give yourself a break, and don’t take the rejection too personally.
Successful candidates bounce back from rejection because they use it as an opportunity for self-improvement, and they are motivated to do better in the future. Everyone hears “no” sooner or later, but it only takes one “yes” to change your career trajectory.
For more job searching tips visit the Nextaff Talent Blog.
If you have any questions, please contact us.
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