Bouncing Back from Unsuccessful Interviews

BY Lisa Gaffney |

So much preparation, planning and apprehension goes into an interview you so desperately want to be successful in, but what happens when you are told no?!

How can this be fair?

You’ve spent so long going over the interview questions, researching the company and their values, planning your journey and imagining how this job could fit perfectly into your life, only to find out you’ve been rejected.

Although this rejection can be extremely difficult to process, it’s important that we turn this feedback into positive areas for development and to keep moving forward.

First of all, don’t take failure personally. Although it might feel personal, it’s important that you take the time to listen to the feedback and understand why your skill set wasn’t a good fit for the role.

Companies require many different technical skills combined with the right person for that workplace environment. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be hard to find both so although you may be the best fit for the culture of the business, your technical skills may not match what the company is looking for. This is not to say that you would not be suitable for a different opportunity, so don’t take it personally.

Next, when the interviewer contacts you with the feedback, it is important to welcome this and make them aware of how valuable it is to your career development. This shows that you are committed to improving your skill set for future opportunities. Showing a positive and proactive attitude is key with feedback. Sit down and look at the areas that you could improve on and do something about it.

There is always something you can do to enhance your skill set, whether it be completing online courses or attending professional development workshops in areas which you may not feel confident in. This all adds to your CV and could be the difference to get you the role.

Finally, plan your next move and keep moving forward. Once you have received the feedback and have decided to use it in a constructive manner, get out there and start looking for that dream job again! Be selective with what you apply for - where you feel you could be the right match for the job after doing your research on the role and company.

From an interviewee’s perspective, we might worry about not being good enough for a certain company or role, but this works both ways and it’s important that you see the value in going after the opportunity. You want to work in an environment where you can continue to learn and develop your skills and to feel comfortable with the culture of the workplace.

All in all, do remember that success doesn’t happen to you, it happens because of you!

Do you need advice tailoring your resume for applications? Want to learn how to ace interviews? As part of the Professional WIL Placement (Internship) Program and Accounting and IT Professional Year programs we help students do just that, and stand out in a competitive job market. 

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