5 Lessons I Learnt from a Job Interview I Failed – Facing Interview Rejection!

This should not be new for anyone who has anytime in his life went on a hunt for a new job. It is not uncommon for anyone to fail in the interview. But what is important is the fact that you learn from the interview that you failed in.

Failures can be extremely difficult to take by a lot of people. But some take it positively in their stride and work on aspects that they failed in. That is one way of doing it. There could be other ways as well, but it entirely depends upon what your expectation from the interview was.

There could be instances where you failed in an interview that you knew you couldn’t. It is not abnormal for you to wonder as to what happened. So how do you deal with such a situation?

One thing that you need to understand is that interviews are not always a “selection of the best”. Instead it is a selection of “what the interviewer feels is the best”. In such a situation it is not uncommon for even the not-so-good candidate to get selected and the best one to get rejected. This is a very tricky situation to be in, especially if you know all the candidates and that you know that none of them stand a chance in front of you.

So, I was one of the candidates in the internal job posting. The position was for the next level in the same department that I was working for. It was something that I was doing for years and there was no reason why anybody else would have a better knowledge of the work. Add to it the fact that I had better overall work experience and qualifications and I was the best candidate by default… or, so I thought. But the interviewer had different thoughts. I got rejected.

Even worse was what happened when I asked the interviewer for a feedback. He gave me some vague statements and for once I was shattered. This was a role I was preparing for and I dreamt of for years. The pain of losing something that you had been wanting for long was unbearable. And the fact that my department did not recognize all the work and efforts I had put in for years, pained and angered me further. It took me days to come out of it. But when it all ended, I learnt a couple of things, which were to be with me for a long long time.

facing interview rejection

The Lessons I learnt on Facing Interview Rejection

These lessons are not from the book of ethics or, zenhabits. But these are from real life experience. It is easy to preach and write a few nice points but difficult to implement those. I acknowledge..

LESSON – 1 : It is good to plan your career in advance and yearn for a specific role. But always be prepared with a plan-B because the hiring manager for the role that you have been preparing for might just not feel you as the best-fit for the role. He might even reject you because he hated the color of the tie you were wearing on that day. There is no point of being disappointed. Instead start straight off with your Plan-B.

LESSON – 2 : Loyalty is an in-existent term in the corporate dictionary. So don’t think that your organization or, manager is going to feel very bad about you not getting selected or, moving on. They are very much aware of the fact that nothing will change even if you move. Also they don’t think that your loyalty deserves something extra. Whatever you deserved was given to you by way of the monthly salary that you were paid. Base your career-decisions solely on how profitable that decision is for you and not on what you manager will feel.

LESSON – 3 : Networking is your most important job priority. What is more important that your work is to establish a good network with influential people in your organization. Even if your role does not permit, you need to ensure that you connect with the influential leaders in your organization, even if they are not from your department and even if establishing that connection means, you are jumping hierarchy. Do you really think your manager will have a chance to frown, if your connect with the executive leader in your organization is very strong? If you do not have the connect, don’t be surprised if you get rejected because of “lack of leadership presence“.

LESSON – 4 : They were right in saying that “Smart work is important than Hard Work” and they meant it. If you have been working hard, then you have just not been doing it right. Start working smart. So if you are wondering, what smart work is all about.. you need to read the story of the dog and the donkey. It is not about who did the job, but it is about who left the evidence of doing it.

LESSON – 5 : Keep that bugle alongside you.. always. Don’t miss a chance of blowing it. You might have just done the right thing for your boss and the organization. But who cares, if they didn’t know about it. Blow the bugle whenever you get a chance. Mark all of those mails where you have received an appreciation from someone to your boss and his boss. Every mail which is an evidence of you finishing a work successfully has to be invariably marked to your boss, even if that means clogging his mailbox. That will be a good reason for your boss to know that you exist in the organization and that your existence is important.

Concluding The Story

If you think that all of the above are valuable lessons, then you are somebody who can survive in a corporate. But if you think, all of what you read here defies the law of “perfect living”, then you should start looking for a new job right away because it will be near to impossible for you to survive in a corporate.

Don’t forget to tell me your thoughts on these lessons by commenting below. And if you agree with what you read, you are free to share it with your friends.