We’ve all been there. You leave an interview feeling positively giddy that you nailed it. It’s only a matter of days, maybe less, until the employer calls you back with a job offer.
But after a week passes and then two, it starts to sink in that perhaps you’ve misjudged the situation. Slowly your elation turns to irritation, even anger at the idea that the employer doesn’t even bother to call you back. It would make more sense if you were just a faceless applicant in a pile of many. But you actually shook the employer’s hand, exchanged human pleasantries, and made a connection. What’s going on here?
The most likely answer is nothing. Which is to say that you didn’t get the job, and everyone else has moved on except you.
Of course, there are many times when an employer is so busy that the hiring process drags on much longer than anticipated. This is why you should always follow-up after a week. Better yet, get a precise idea from the employer of when you should follow-up.
The best, most considerate employers will always keep you in the loop and at least email you (or have an assistant email you) if they’ve decided to go with someone else. In this case, you shouldn’t feel bad. Something about you motivated them to call you in for an interview. This only validates your desirability as a candidate.
The fact that you didn’t get the job usually comes down to experience or even something out of your control, like chemistry. And if you send a resume to a recruiter, feel lucky if you even receive so much as a confirmation. The sheer volume of resumes and job inquiries that employers receive on a regular basis makes it almost impossible to respond to everyone.
But if your resume and interviews are continually met with silence, despite your wealth of experience, it’s time to do a little detective work and find out why.
This is the gatekeeper of your career, so to speak. Having a good resume can make or break your chances of getting an interview. So be sure that it’s job search ready. Is your resume easy to read, professional looking and free of errors? Is it highlighting the right skills and assets? Is it up-to-date, short and concise?
Remember that an employer takes only a few seconds to peruse each resume. If it doesn’t catch his eye right away, he moves on to the next one. Before you send out any more resumes, it might be helpful to review this refresher on how to write the perfect resume.
Once you’ve secured the interview, now comes the hard part of convincing the employer to hire you. It helps to remember that they wouldn’t have gone to the trouble of inviting you for an interview if they didn’t already think you were qualified. Nailing the interview is mostly about something more unspoken: your personality, professional appearance and whether or not they think you’ll fit in.
There are so many factors that can adversely affect the success of your interview. But if you keep getting to this point without sealing the deal, it’s important to assess what’s going wrong.
Are you dressed properly for the interview? Are you on time? Did you practice your answers beforehand so that you’re able to effortlessly showcase your qualities? Do you come across as confident or desperate? Is your body language open, friendly and relaxed (but not too casual)?
After you’ve narrowed down some possibilities, check out these articles on ways to improve your interviewing acumen by refining your job interviewing etiquette, mastering your body language, and learning how to dress for success.
Don’t focus on the things that are out of your control. Ultimately you’ll be happier if it’s a good fit for both you and the employer.
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