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Advice

Planning Your Next Steps After A Job Rejection

We have all been there. The dreaded email that reads "Unfortunately, on this occasion..." or "After careful consideration, we have decided not to move forward with your application". It hurts. Especially if you put in all the hard work during the application process and you were very enthusiastic about getting the job role. But, if you've been rejected, it can be disheartening. Sometimes after a rejection, it can be harder to get back on the saddle, but with the right mindset, you can turn your rejection into career development.

So what can you do after a job rejection?

Accept the rejection
There are going to be several moments in life, and in your career where you are going to face failure. It happens to almost everyone, we're only human, right? But that's the beauty in failing, you start to recognise where you went wrong, and you grow from it. Accepting your failures with an open mind will only lead to more opportunities, new career paths, and success in life.

Get feedback from the recruiter or employer
Self-reflection after the recruitment process does not always paint a good picture of your rejection. To get a good understanding of the reasons behind your rejection, ask for detailed feedback from the recruiter or employer. It's a proactive step in your career development, it can help you grow professionally, clarify any misunderstandings, and improve your chances of success in future job applications.

Reflect
When it comes to your next interview, review your feedback from previous recruiters/employers and self-assess how you can improve for your upcoming interview. Review your previous experiences, look back at the feedback you received, and scrutinize yourself. Were you prepared? Did you do enough research? How was your interaction with the interviewer? Examine every step of where you went wrong and try to identify your weaknesses so you can develop them. There is always going to be room for improvement, so take a moment to reflect on yourself and move forward with a better understanding.

Be pragmatic
Sometimes you are rejected by a company due to the things you can't change. An employer may prefer someone who is more experienced in a particular area than you are or has a stronger skill set than you do. You can't change yourself overnight. Be a realist and focus on the things you can change. It's possible that the job role wasn't the perfect fit for you. Sometimes, chemistry can be a crucial factor in a successful working partnership.

Deepen your research efforts
After you get rejected and receive your feedback, sometimes you'll find that the job wasn't perfect for you. Ensure you review the job description before applying for the position and think to yourself, is this job really for me? If you don't get excited about the prospects of the job role and the job specification doesn't satisfy you, then the interviewer will feel it as well. Search for a role that suits you! Think about your ambitions and aspirations and ask yourself does this job role meets your expectations. Tailor your research to suit a particular job.

Reestablish your self-esteem
Even after you have reviewed your feedback, CV and experience, you may still think that you were the right candidate for that position – try and remember that any job rejection does not define you. So instead of being disappointed, try and restore your self-confidence.

Keep Job Hunting
Try and keep hunting for new job opportunities. After a job rejection, you might feel a little down and disheartened, especially if that was your dream job, but it's essential to keep searching and applying for new job roles. If you leave your job search after a rejection, you will forget what went wrong and you'll keep your mind busy. Use your job rejection as a motivator to spend more time and effort searching for a new and better opportunity.

Progress forward
Acknowledge your mistakes, learn from them, and keep going! Make sure you stick to your job search strategy. Be optimistic when searching for new job opportunities. Finally, work on your CV and interviewing skills.

Rejections are a common part of life, but their value lies in the lessons they provide us with and the opportunities they offer for personal development and improvements in your future.