10 Ways to Deal with Job Rejection – by Anastasia Evans
Depending on the level of competitiveness in your chosen field –and increasingly, even in more open fields – job rejections are unhappily common. Graduates have faced a rough job market for years, and the bottleneck of talented candidates is still reality in a number of areas.
Don’t let failed applications bring you down. Here are 10 ways to deal with job rejection.
- Go through the stages of grief.
Losing a potential job is a tragic process – you basically witness the future you had imagined slipping away. Ignoring feelings of rejection will be bad for you in the long run, so embrace them instead. Go through the stages of grief; the denial, the anger, the depression, and the acceptance. Eat a tub of ice cream if it makes you feel better (although if your field is competitive, you may want to switch to frozen yogurt)!
- Consider what went wrong.
If you know that you had a thoroughly cringe-worthy interview, or if you’ve realized too late that you made an unforgivable mistake on your CV, it’s a lot easier to accept that your recruiters didn’t think you were the right fit. Look over your application, and seriously consider if you may have accidentally called your interviewer ‘mum.’
- Ask for feedback.
Regardless of whether you think you know the reasons, it always pays to get some feedback. Best case scenario: you get some constructive criticism that you can take on board, address, and improve on for the future. Worst case scenario: your recruiter tells you that had your skirt tucked into your knickers for the entire hour, and that it was too distracting to hear a word you said.
- Move on.
Search for other jobs! There are always plenty more fish in the sea, no matter what you might be starting to believe. Spend some time fishing around, and find one which really suits your skills: a company that shares your values and goals will be much easier to convince to hire you. Find a role matching your experience, strengths, and offers development to target areas you could improve on. It will be out there, even if it’s hiding somewhere you might not expect.
- Apply, apply, apply!
It can be a laborious process, but get yourself back out into the jobs market. Find the balance between being too picky (you do want a job out of this after all), and sending out blanket applications that sound impersonal. Network – even if only over LinkedIn – so that people will recognize the name on your CV.
If you’re just starting out, consider getting more experience in your field before searching for your ‘real job.’ While plenty of new graduates intern out of necessity, it is also a great way to improve your employability and confirm that you’re applying for the right jobs. You may discover that you don’t even like your chosen company or field. Notoriously, some internships are unpaid, but plenty provide basic expenses while you work, which is surely worth the boost to your CV and the reassurance that you’re following your dream.
- Get a related job.
If you’re between jobs or newly graduated, consider getting a basic job to tide you over. All experience provides you with new skills that will make you more employable in the future, so even if you’re working as a shop assistant with a Masters degree, those extra people skills will allow you to create a better impression later on. It will break up the process of perpetual CV improvement, and reassure you that lots of people appreciate your skills. Also: money!
- Don’t let your job search define you.
As much as it can feel like it – especially having spent three or four years of your degree working towards your first job – a career isn’t everything. It’s unusual to have time away from work, so appreciate this. Your job will not define who you are, especially at the beginning, so try not to let it affect your mood.
- Remember, time is on your side.
Look to the pasts of famous success stories. Remember how Harpers Bazaar sacked Anna Wintour way before Vogue had even heard her name? That Andy Warhol’s paintings were refused, even as a gift, from the Museum of Modern Art? And that Winston Churchill didn’t become prime minister until he was 62? These people changed the faces of their industries later in life; you have plenty of time.
- Consider the benefits.
When you finally get your break, you’ll look back to this period, realizing that each experience built your character and taught you something new. You’ll appreciate your new career, and work harder as a result. They could actually be good for you!
Read the original posting on Careerealism HERE