Why You Should Never Take A Job Rejection Personally
Have you ever been rejected for a job that you really wanted? Read more to find out Julia's experience and why you should not take a rejection personally...
I looked down at my phone and saw that I had an incoming call from Janet James* (*name changed for this article). Janet was the Human Resources Director at a publishing house that I so desperately wanted to work for. I was so nervous to take the call. I had no idea whether this call was going to be the good news that I was so anxious to receive, or the bad news that I just didn’t want to hear.
I really wanted the position as Social Media Marketing Manager. After interviewing with six different people over the course of two months, I was just hoping that I had this position in the bag.
“Julia, we think that you are a great candidate, but we don’t think you would be a good fit for the role,” said Janet. Mierda! They could have told me two interviews ago! My heart sank. I thanked Janet for her time and consideration, and I asked her to keep my resume on file.
I had been job searching for eight months. I hated my current job, and was more than ready to jump ship. After numerous online applications, phone interviews, in-person interviews, countless mock interviews, job seminars with career counselors, and networking with former classmates and coworkers – I had yet to land a better job.
I’ve revised my resume more times than I could count, read numerous articles about navigating the job market, and spent time in meditation and prayer. I couldn’t help but feel like the ultimate failure. Mi Abuelita suggested that I contact one of her close friends for a Santería spell. It couldn’t hurt, but black magic is not my thing. Ay ya la vida!
I have more than five years experience in my field, and a postgraduate degree from a prestigious university. On every interview, I’m told that I am the perfect candidate with impressive qualifications, transferable skill sets, and great experience. But for whatever reason, I have yet to be hired.
It’s hard not to take job rejections personally.
It's hard not to take job rejections personally. The interview process tests your self-esteem, and it can be emotionally draining to constantly hear that you are 'good, but just not good enough.' There are moments when I feel like giving up, and saying “ay coño, I can’t do this.” Everyone tells me not to be to hard on myself, because before I know it, I will be the perfect candidate, for the perfect job, at the perfect company, at the perfect time.
They say it’s good to surround yourself with those who are going to remind you of how great you actually are. After I got off the phone with Janet, I immediately called Dana (my old college roommate). She had been my biggest cheerleader throughout the entire interview process.
“They are stupid,” Dana said. “Look, you have a lot to offer. You are highly qualified, you are very creative, and damn it, you are bilingual!” She was right. I would be a valuable asset to any company, and if an interviewer couldn’t see that, then well, that was their problem. I did my part by putting my best foot forward.
Surround yourself with those who are going to remind you of how great you actually are.
It is natural for us to take a job rejection personally. But we must understand that it has less to do with who we are – and more to do with the company doing the rejection. I know what I can offer, and it’s not my fault the interviewer was unable to see my potential.
Keep putting yourself out there.
I will never know why I wasn’t considered a good fit. I have no idea what the state of affairs is at that particular publishing house. Besides, why would I want to work for a company that is unable to see my value or possibilities? Maybe, this rejection is a blessing in disguise. What if I got the job and I ended up hating it? The universe always has something better.
No matter how many times I am rejected, I’m going to keep putting myself out there. One day the perfect company will kick themselves for passing on the perfect candidate, for the perfect job, at the perfect time.
Photo credit: © Jamie Grill/Blend Images/Corbis