It’s always tough to find out you didn’t land the job you were interviewing for. You put energy into it, took time off, started to get more excited about it, only to be rejected. Most people want to know why, and specifically why at that.
For the candidates we work with, they are vetted against a deep understanding of the company culture and job expectations. The majority of our candidates who didn’t move forward were a ‘runner up’. There was simply someone else in the mix that had a bit better experience match to the company’s needs. There’s nothing you could have done differently, you can’t change your current experiences.
It may still be a tough pill to swallow, that someone else landed the role, but if you were the runner up, take some pride in that, there’s a lot of highly qualified people competitng for any one role.
The second most common reason for rejection is, frankly, you didn’t interview well. We coach people to be specific, to elaborate, to have clear and relevant examples of work. And to the extent possible, have fun with the conversation, don’t get too nervous.
Those who are introverted, those whose nerves got the best of them and used simple binary answers don’t move forward in the interview process. The hiring manager’s feedback is often, “I just couldn’t figure out what they did or accomplished”.
The final reason a small fraction of our candidates don’t land the job is they miss the mark on the interview completely. Maybe the coding challenge was too difficult, maybe the interview went back too far into academia. Maybe you simply froze up. Or maybe, you inadvertently expressed yourself in a way that came off as arrogant or lacked inclusivity.
If it happens more than a couple of times, you need professional coaching, an investment in yourself that will pay back many times over the course of your career. Mock interviews, online interviewing tests, video taped interviews with a candid debrief even image consulting are ways to help shape your interviewing skills going forward.
Let’s face it, interviewing is very different from doing the job, but it’s the tool we use. Nailing the interview is a key business skill.