When you first graduate and start selecting graduate jobs to apply for, you may not be prepared for what lies ahead. Unless you’re either very lucky, or exceptionally gifted, it’s unlikely that you will apply for just one job and receive a job offer after your first interview process.
What is more likely is that you will apply for several graduate vacancies over a period of time, and a job offer is more likely to be forthcoming after several attempts. Indeed, in previous articles we have recommended you attempt to initiate several process at once to increase your chances of success.
What this does mean is that you are likely to face rejection along the way to success, which can present dangers with regard to your future chances of achieving your objectives. If you are not ready for rejections, and you take it to heart, it can serious damage your confidence and inhibit your attempts on other applications.
For most people, although they perhaps don’t register this, rejections are usually, and often necessary steps on the road to success. Here’s my top tips for dealing with rejection.
What can you learn from it?
In some cases, the reasons you have failed can be utterly concealed and nothing to do with you personally, one extreme example is another candidate has a relative in the management structure of the company, and his name was on the job before you started! Right through to someone else has already done this particular job before and has presented with a track record.
In most other cases, you will receive feedback on which you can build, if not, ask for it. Can you identify occasions where you perhaps didn’t do what you latterly thought was best? What questions were asked and did you answer them well or not. The same questions will likely arise again. Was your speech too quiet or too quick?
Remember, nearly any success story you can find in life, from Richard Branson through to Bill Gates will be able to detail the failures they experienced and the mistakes they made on route to success. The thing that defines the winners are the ones who are able to learn form these and build on them as part of their route to success, rather than allow them to destroy their confidence.
Don’t take it personally
You shouldn’t take it personally, because it isn’t personal! There will be perfectly objective and rational reasons why someone else has been successful and you haven’t at graduate jobs interviews, the key lies in the above. If you can systematically identify factors which are denying you success, in most cases you ‘will’ be able to influence these for a more positive result next time.
I started the article by pointing out that the majority of people will go through several processes before achieving the right result. Hence you should treat each rejection as one further step closer to you goal, an additional opportunity to refine your approach.
Never bite back
Having received a rejection, although it can be very tempting, don’t bite back. Remember it’s not personal and you really don’t know who you will meet again along the way. If you are pursuing a career in a given sector, there is a high likelihood that you will meet the people you are dealing with again at some stage in the future. You may end up working with them , or indeed they may end up making another decision on your future at a later stage.
After an interview and feedback, thank the person, whatever they say. Thank them for their time and for listening. Appreciate their decision and comment that you’re sure you’ll meet again at some stage.
Never take revenge, even with little snide remarks, it’s a small world in business and you never know who you will meet, where and when and in what context.
In summary, if you are setting yourself of graduate jobs interviews, be ready for a bumpy ride and don’t expect success at the first juncture. Expect rejections along the way from which you will need to learn, bounce back and build on your experience. If you are persistent and tenacious with your approach, success will come in time, and you will be stronger for the experience.
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