Nobody likes rejection, especially when you’re really putting yourself out there. In a job search, there is nothing more frustrating than lining up some fantastic interviews and then not getting a job offer. You’ve spent hours planning, preparing, and hyping yourself up for the interview. You’ve poured a ton of emotional time and energy into acing the interview. If it keeps happening, it can be a huge blow to your confidence.
If you’re feeling discouraged and wondering what you’re missing, you’ve come to the right place. Once doubt starts to creep in it can lead to a poor performance on your next interview and then turn into a cycle that’s hard to break. The good news is interview problems are fixable! Here are five strategies you can try to ace your next interview and get the job offer.
Take a Break
Any job search can be stressful, if you’re unemployed and need a paycheck it can add even more stress. A survey by the Pew Research Center found that about half of U.S. adults who are looking for a job are pessimistic about their prospects for future employment. 53% say they’ve felt like they lost a piece of their identity during the job hunt process.
The best thing you can do when the job search is getting you down is to take a break. If you can take a whole week, do it. If you’re unemployed, make sure you’re taking full advantage of all your unemployment benefits so you can ease some of your financial stress.
During your break try to do something that brings you joy. This could be reading a book, catching up with friends, visiting a museum, doing something creative, or taking a mini-road trip. Keep your endorphins up by catching a workout class or walking outside. Remember that you are working to live, not living to work. Take the time to enjoy the small moments in life that will recharge your spirit.
Re-evaluate the Roles You’re Applying For
A common issue that I see with clients is that people aren’t applying for roles that match their skills, experience, and passion. Some are applying for roles that are too low and others are reaching too high. You might be a perfect fit for the role, except your resume and positioning in the interview don’t showcase that. This is where quality over quantity makes a huge difference in the job search. You’ll want to focus on the job postings that you really want, versus just applying to apply. Make sure that you’re customizing your resume with keywords from the job description and translating your experience for the readers. This demonstrates your enthusiasm for the role and your ability to meet their needs.
Ask for Feedback
If you don’t hear back from the job or if they call to let you know they’ve gone with someone else, ask for feedback. Thank your interviewers for their time, express disappointment, and ask if they have any recommendations for improvement.
Don’t be defensive or try to change their mind when you receive the feedback. What you can do is let the recruiter know that you are interested in future opportunities with the company. This is where it helps to connect with your interviewers on LinkedIn so they can follow you in the future. You never know when something else might open up.
It also helps to pay attention to the company’s employees on LinkedIn to see who they did end up hiring. You might be able to see the reason clearly or a skill set/experience that they were stronger in.
Practice Makes Perfect
Every team you ever tried out for, show you auditioned for, or test you took involved practice. Why should a job you want be any different? Preparation is key. Once you schedule the interview you want to practice…on camera.
You can ask a friend or family member to do a mock interview and record your answers. When you watch the interview back, pay attention to your body language, filler words, and facial expressions. Are you repeating your resume or are you expanding and explaining your resume? Have your interviewer ask you the tough questions so you can practice your responses.
If you’re really struggling, consider booking a Power Session with me for a mock interview. It helps to practice with someone that can provide objective feedback.
Make a Connection
If you’ve made it to a second or third interview, the company knows you can do the job. At this stage, they are usually deciding between you and one or two other candidates. The finalists can all do the job, so they want to know HOW you would do the job, WHY you want the job, and how you will FIT with the team. What do THEY need? How can you HELP them? Why should they pick YOU?
Don’t automatically assume you’ve got the job offer. This is where you really need to step it up because you’re competing with someone that has a similar background and skillset to yours. Multiple interviews are a chance to connect with other members of the team you will be working with. It’s important to find a connection to each of these people.
In any interview situation, confidence is key. You want to be direct and show them what you have to offer. Take a rest…Practice…Smile. You got this! I’m rooting for you!
If you need additional practice, don’t hesitate to set up a Power Session with me below, and let’s get you that job offer: