There’s no doubt about it—no one likes to get turned down, especially when it comes to a new job. When you’re prepared for an interview and excited to show off your skills, it can be disheartening to receive a rejection. But there is a good way to look at it: a job rejection gives you the opportunity to learn, grow, and move on to a new opportunity that can be even better.
Ask for Feedback
If you’re wondering what went wrong with your application and hoping to improve your chances in future rounds of applications, it’s worth it to ask for feedback. Recruiters and HR managers may be willing to provide some insight into why your application wasn’t successful.
If you didn’t have enough experience, you can learn from that and take steps to strengthen this area. If someone else was chosen over you because they had more experience, for example, consider volunteer work or joining a professional organization as ways to help build up your resume so you could compete with them next time.
Develop a Plan
Develop a personal development plan based on what you’ve learned. Do an inventory of your qualifications and skills. If there are skill gaps, start working on building those skills to improve your next interview performance.
Consider what feedback you have had during the recruitment process. Have your strengths and weaknesses been consistent throughout? If so, then this should give a good indication of where to focus your preparations for next time.
Try not to dwell on the rejection or let it damage your self-esteem or confidence. Instead, focus on things you can control, such as your attitude towards the situation and what to do next. You could also try turning any negative thoughts into positive ones by remembering your skills and strengths and writing down everything you have achieved in your life so far (even if they seem small). In most cases, you’ll receive feedback on what a company liked about you as a candidate- be sure to capitalize on that too.
In the end, there are many ways you can use rejection to your advantage in the job search—not only by using it as a motivator to pursue new job opportunities but also in terms of learning how to deal with disappointment. If you can develop a more resilient outlook and perspective on rejections and setbacks, then you will find that more doors will open for you throughout your career search process.
If you need assistance in finding that next great opportunity, The Reserves Network can help. Browse our current job openings or contact us to learn how we can help you find and land the job that’s right for you.