How to Handle Rejection and Failure after Interviews.

  | 6 min read

“Your biggest problem is that you think you shouldn’t have problems…but problems are what make us grow”

—Tony Robbins

Congratulations, you are alive! By the time you have graduated and attained a Diploma, Degree or Masters, you probably have gone through myriads of episodes of failure. In fact, the ratio between those who have ‘made it’ thus far and those who totally been discarded is so vast!

In your transition from Junior School to Senior School, a multiplied millions of people failed that stage for one reason or another. From Senior school to College, University or Graduate school, another multiplied millions of your age range have also been discarded by the system, and some even labeled “Failures!”

Brace yourself: At one point in time, that title might be yours immediately after an interview. You have probably seen that graphic explaining the difference between what we think success is, and what success really is. The graphic shows a straight line from point A to point B, depicting what we think, or better yet what we wish success would be.

We want to finish school and have myriads of job opportunities available to us for our comfortable choice. We want to get into an interview (and a multiplied million people would rather not go through the interview process) and at the first attempt, we pass it and get our dream job.

Fortunately (that is written on purpose), that is not what life works. One of our greatest psychological needs that trump many others is the need for growth. And life in its greatest wisdom provides us two choices for growth: By choice or by Force. Growth by choice is what you are doing right now: Taking some time to read through these articles as you prepare yourself to forge ahead in life (read grow).

Growth by force is what we are talking about today. This is when you face uncertainty and life throws you off the balance. One of those ways is through failing an interview. Let us advise you a little on this:

a)  You are not the first one to fail an interview

b)  Those who have failed interviews before are not failures in life (The founder of Whatsapp was rejected by Facebook, for example)

c)  Failing an interview does not mean you are stupid, neither does it mean you are a failure

d) It is not written that you must pass any interview that you attend

e)  This is not the last interview you will ever attend in life.

f)   Failure is best written when you choose to call it “Feedback”

In a nutshell, what we are sharing with you is that failure of an interview is normal, should be expected and it is not the end of life, but rather a process necessary for your growth.

“Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm”

—Winston Churchill

Please note that there are two major reasons as to why you might fail for an interview:

You are incompetent: At times you even know this yourself. But this is an opportunity to go and work on that area of your weakness or strengthen that area of your strength so that next time (believe me, there will always be another interview), you will be better prepared.

The Interviewer(s) Did not like you: This might have no linking to you being incompetent. Whatever the reason for your failure, remember that this is not what defines who you really are. You are gifted, talented and are called to make a massive difference on earth. Whether you pass this interview or fail it, does not alter the fact that you are called and have a definite life purpose for which you have been prepared, skilled, gifted and talented to carry out.

You are a blessing to many and this is what we call your moment of obscurity. Probably nobody knows you now…but that does not mean that you are worthless or not valued. This is one of your most important moments of your life. In this obscurity, you can grow your muscle and keep growing until one day the world will know your name.

The worst thing that you can ever do is to brand yourself a failure just because an interviewing panel somewhere found you unfit for a position. You need to continue seeing yourself as significant, needed, worthy, talented and filled with purpose here on earth. You also need to understand that all you are going through is  a process of growth.

Some people already do know what to do immediately after a disappointment or a rejection. Remember the first time your heart was broken in a romantic relationship? What did you tell yourself? We bet you said, “Let them go, they do not know what a valuable person they are putting away!” Now that is the spirit! Because it is the truth! You are a valuable person!

Immediately after failing an interview, please take the following steps:

1.Review and affirm yourself: What you tell yourself after the failure and rejection must be positive and must affirm the fact that you are worth being alive, are called to contribute and make a difference on earth. Do it because it is true.

2.Face the brutal facts: If you are incompetent, accept the fact as it is. If you were unprepared, accept the fact as it is. If the failure was to do with anything that you did or did not do, accept the fact as it is, however ,brutal it might be.

3.Take Immediate Corrective Action: You now have a mighty Arsenal that you can prepare by focusing on what you did not do well. Decide to become the Master of it now and let it be under your belt as a conquered foe.

4.Confidently apply for more interview: Walk around with your head held up high for you are better off today than when you first began.

You shall make it!


Jill Abura
Jill is an International Digital Consultant at Ringier AG, spends her time on research on real estate investment and has a special place in her heart for green building.


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