Getting rejected from a job opportunity you’re excited about can be detrimental to your confidence in your job search. The application and interview stages are usually quite a process and no matter where you are in that process, if you get rejected, it’s tough. Many candidates internalize this and it can majorly affect the motivation to jump back into your search. So, how do you overcome the rejection in a job search?
Reflect on the experience
When you experience a ‘no’ in your job search, take the opportunity to turn it into a learning experience. Is there anything you wish you would have done differently throughout the hiring process? Did you learn anything about yourself? i.e. interview skills you need to work on, job responsibilities you do/don’t want to do. Take what you learned throughout the process and work on applying that to your next interview experience and become an even stronger candidate. Did the hiring manager give you any feedback? Use that too!
No bridge burning
One of the most difficult things to do when you’ve been rejected by an employer is to move on from the experience and not let it get you down. It’s easy to be angry and bad-mouth the employer, but you want to make sure you’re smart and avoid burning any bridges for future employment opportunities. If the company took time to interview you and included you in their pool of candidates, they saw you as a viable option and could possibly consider you again if the position opens. You could also potentially reach back out to the connections you made for networking purposes.
Fuel the fire
Your natural instinct might be to give up and lose momentum, don’t do this! Use the rejection from the opportunity and let it motivate you even more! As mentioned before, use this as a learning experience to become the best candidate you can be. Get back out there and don’t let one or even a few rejections get you down, your perfect opportunity could be on it’s way.Getting turned down by an opportunity you were excited about is tough no matter what but if you handle it in the right way, it can end up benefiting you in the long run!
“What’s your biggest weakness?” This is a question job seekers still have a difficult time answering. Should you admit to an actual weakness? Or make yourself seem like a superhero? Although it’s a tough question, it reveals a lot about a candidate to a hiring manager. The point of the question is to see how you address a challenge or difficulty, it also allows the hiring manager to see the type of perspective you have about yourself and your abilities.
So, how should you approach this question in your next interview? There isn’t one correct answer, but there are a few different approaches that are your best bet to a successful answer.
Be as specific as possible
This is a question you don’t want to give a generalized answer to such as “I’m not good at communication”. This is a huge red flag and can lead to an onslaught of questions. If communication is truly one of your issues, perhaps pinpointing that in the past you have had difficulty speaking to large groups but are working on your presentation skills by giving a specific example, is more appealing than a huge communication weakness. Whatever your weakness may be, try to pick a small aspect of that weakness to talk about.
It might seem like finding cliche answers to this question is a good idea but it can come around to harm you in the end. The hiring manager might dig deeper into the answer you give and it will become clear you’re not being honest. Take a long look at your weaknesses prior to the interview and decide which you are comfortable speaking about in the interview. Giving an honest answer will create a genuine and thoughtful image.
Avoid key skills
Before you walk into the interview, carefully examine the job description and make sure the weakness you’re going to speak about isn’t on the list. If you walk in blind and mention that you work better individually but a huge part of the position is working across multiple teams, it will be a deal-breaker. Avoid mentioning any weakness that is part of the job description, or the hiring manager will automatically assume you’re not a fit for the role.
Demonstrate your progress
When you speak about your weakness, don’t call it a weakness and don’t use absolute terms. Use words like “tend to” or “sometimes” so that it doesn’t seem like a constant problem. Once you’ve stated your weakness, mention how you’ve worked on this weakness to improve. For example if your weakness is being a people pleaser, mention how you’ve actively worked on completing your work before taking on too many responsibilities. Or if your weakness is a specific skill, that you’ve taken courses to improve, anything to show that you recognize your weakness and are actively working on it.