Job Interview Rejection: What I Learned


I recently had a job interview. It was my first in-person job interview ever. After a lot of hard work and preparation, it was finally time for the interview. The following day, I found out via email that I did not get the job. While the news was disappointing, I did appreciate having an answer so I could move on. This disappointment actually gave me more motivation than I had before. 

I will preface my stance by saying I am currently employed somewhere else. The job I have allows me to pay my bills. I will not starve based on getting rejected for another position. I can understand how rejection can weigh harder on someone else who needs a job for survival.

Even though I did not get the job that I applied for, there were benefits to the experience. I am a believer that you can learn something from everything you do in life. From the interview, I became aware of things I needed to work on. For example, while I was confident in my appearance and my handshake, I realized that I needed to be more present in the moment. I had learned little about the company, and I could have prepared better by doing more research. I also thought of answers to sample interview questions. However, when questions I was not prepared for came up, I drew a blank. There were long pauses in the interview. As I scrambled for an answer, I became less confident. I learned that I need to work on improving my ability to think on my feet.

After my first interview, I am less nervous for the next one and any that may come after that. I have experience to draw from. I have ways to improve. Even if I did not get this job, I have a better chance of getting one in the future by growing from my failure rather than by wallowing in it. No matter how your interview goes, if you keep developing and try your best, you should feel good about it.

My last point is that even if you get rejected from a job, you are not a failure. Despite expressions to the contrary, you can fail a class, but there is no such thing as failing at life. If you do not get a job, you simply are just not right for the job at the moment. It does not mean you will not be the right person for the job in the future. There is always time to improve. Learn your lessons now so when your time comes, you will be ready.
Image: Caro Wallis, Flickr