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How to Deal With Rejection in an Interview

It's hard to not take an interview rejection personally. But separating yourself from this negativity is the key to moving on. So it is recommended to not dwell on the rejection. That being said, we all understand how it is easier said than done. As humans, we tend to focus more on the negative aspects of things. So feeling disheartened after that dreaded phone call or email is quite normal. 

However, when you start feeling disheartened for a prolonged period that is when the trouble occurs. The sadness you feel after the rejection will only cause hindrance in the search process for the next opportunity. The best way to deal with rejection in an interview is to learn from your mistakes and approach the new interview with a fresh perspective. 

Keep in mind that dealing with rejection is as important as any other skill on your resume. So if you ever end up receiving a rejection email in your inbox, here are a few tips to guide you on how to deal with rejection in an interview:

Don't Take It Personally

Giving your best and still receiving rejection can be frustrating. But try not to take it personally. Chances are it is not all about you. If you put your best foot out and still did not get selected then it is highly likely that the decision to not hire you was not based on your performance alone. There could be plenty of explanations like, maybe the company had an excellent internal candidate who was already aware of their business. Such things are beyond your control so don't blame yourself for it.

Exercise Self-Awareness

If you have been facing multiple rejections at job interviews, take a step back and analyze what could be wrong. Examine your resume to see if there is anything missing, or maybe it is not well written. Try changing things up a bit. Follow your thought process and find out if there are any skills you need to work on or learn. There are plenty of online courses that can help you in building a strong skill set. 

Gathering Feedback

This might be a difficult step, but if you get rejected in a job interview you can ask for feedback from the hiring manager. This way you can get help with areas that you know for sure that you have to improve. However, asking for feedback is tricky. The best way to ask for feedback is with the help of a follow-up email. You can mention that you welcome feedback, be it positive or negative, as a way to improve. This might encourage them to actually write back with your feedback. If you do end up getting one, try to read your feedback with an open mind. Look at it as an opportunity to improve on areas that even you may not be aware of. 

Stay Positive

Maintaining a positive attitude is key in such situations. Try not to feel disheartened and blame yourself for everything. Look at this as an opportunity to improve and find something better for yourself. Feel happy about the fact that you made it to the personal interview, there are so many candidates who do not get a chance to even appear for the interview. 

Keep Looking

It is easy to put your job hunting on hold after facing rejection. But the most reliable way to deal with rejection in an interview is to not give up. Keep looking for more job roles and interviews and find something good for yourself. This kind of approach will only help you stay confident and active instead of being stuck in a rejection slump. It is important to not let a rejection pull you down, instead let it lead you to what is meant to be. 

Be Selective

Try to narrow down your search when you are finding job interview opportunities. It is okay to turn down opportunities if you feel they are not right for you. Go for only those roles that are suitable for you. If a job role interests you, before deciding your suitability for it check for a few things. Go through its description, the company culture, responsibilities, and qualifications. If you feel like this is something you are fit for, then go ahead with the interview. But always remember to do your research first. 

Fresh Approach

Approach each interview with a fresh approach. Do not carry the baggage of rejection with you to the new interview. Edit your resume according to the new job requirements, research the new company and prepare well. Not all interviews will go the same way. Each company is different, each hiring manager will be different. Do not doubt yourself in advance and go unprepared and nervous. Appear for the interview with a fresh attitude while staying true to yourself.  

Focus On Your Strength

While there are a few areas where you can improve, there is also a set of unique skills and factors that only you can bring to the table. Focus on those traits because they are your strengths. And because of these strengths, you will end up landing your dream job. So before you start doubting your capabilities, make a list of all your strengths and remember them during your next interview. 

Polish Your Skills

It is essential to polish and update your skills from time to time, especially if you are unemployed at the moment. This means that there might be plenty of things you were really good at in your previous job role. However, now that you are not practicing it every day, those skills might go rusty. Don't let it happen.

Keep Learning

Getting rejected in a job interview takes a hit at your confidence. So it is important to keep your morale up. Keep learning new things that can make you a stronger candidate. Keep up to date with business news and latest trends, this will not only help you during your interview but also with your new job role. Just remember to stay professionally active. 

Handling rejection is difficult for most of us. However, it does offer opportunities that make a person self-reflect and improve. They say "good things come to those who wait." So, don't give up, enhance your job search and be patient. A new opportunity might come knocking on your door when you least expect it. 

 About the Author – Washija Kazim

Washija is a content specialist at Receptix. She has an MBA in Tourism and a passion for creating web content. She is an avid reader, a traveler, and a versatile writer. She has been writing on the topics of education, career advice, and related areas for the past 3 years.