After a fortnight from my attendance at a specific career event, I received an email in my mailbox.
Its content shocked me. My dream company wants to interview me. An incredible role abroad.
I was determined to ace this. So I started to prepare for days, before judgment time eventually came.
I sat down, breathed deeply, exhaled, and dialed. I thought I got this.
And yet, I failed.
I didn’t manage to make a positive impression. My brain stopped working. Anxiety took over.
Yet, there is no one to blame than myself. Me mispresenting myself, that’s my problem.
Instantly after hanging up, I knew. I wouldn’t even hire me myself, based on my lacking performance.
And, sure enough, after a week, the company informed me that they decided not to proceed with me as a candidate.
So, what did go wrong?
Bad Preparation: I always prepare my resume, thinking about how to present it in a way that matches the position of the interview. I thought about how I am suitable for the role like I should have been.
On the other hand, I failed to ask myself questions on how I would act if hired.
When a related question occurred, it broke my confidence. I wasn’t able to give a concrete answer, and that dealt a huge blow on my morale. I wasn’t able to drift away from that.
Unprepared Language Skills: The interview was in English. Right now, as a private in the Greek army, my language skills went a bit rusty.
Instead of fixing that, I thought that it would come naturally. I can’t say I am shocked. That was a huge mistake.
Lack of confidence: As mentioned above, I wasn’t able to recover from that bad question. After that, I failed to portray confidence and a unique character.
It’s obvious that, without you believing in yourself, no recruiter would choose you. So the result came naturally.
The thing about failing, in general, is that we regard it with feelings of inadequacy and self-hatred. It’s natural to feel like rubbish after not reaching our goals.
But it shouldn’t be that way.
No. Failures should be celebrated.
Because there is nothing more educative than a bump in the road.
At first, you worry about what happened. But you eventually get over it.
And when you will pass from a bump like that one, you will know how to deal with it.
I failed to get my dream job; today. As I actually have failed even more times than that.
But, as time passes by, I learn to be happy about them. To embrace them. To learn from them.
And, guess what? That makes me a better person. It allows me to see my mistakes right in the eye.
I am still sad about what happened, don’t get me wrong. I don’t know when I will have an opportunity like that.
But I can only do one thing now to achieve my dream job; Become better.
So what did I do to make the most out of this situation?
Took Some Time to Recover: Failing an important interview can be quite traumatic. It’s easy to be hard on yourself, but you don’t have to.
After an hour, I got up and went for a walk. It helped me clear my thoughts, giving me important, constructive feedback on what I did right or wrong.
Read About What I Should Do: After grieving, it was time for some research. I looked out on the internet for tips on what should I do now.
I recommend reading Forbes’ article on 7 Things You Can Do After A Really Bad Job Interview. It cleared things out on what I should do after what happened.
Wrote Down my Thoughts: This blog isn’t only for you, but for me as well.
Take a pen (or a keyboard) and write down what happened. It’s an incredible way to “replay” what happened. Focus on the important parts: what went right or wrong, what you should keep and what you should absolutely avoid for your next interview.
Sent a Thank you Email: It didn’t help much for me, but that was the right thing to do. Always send a thank you letter to your recruiter, as it’s an opportunity to stand out from the competition.
Just remember; send it not too long after the interview. Do it while you are still “fresh” in the recruiter’s mind, and he or she will appreciate the gesture even more.
Include specific things about the interview. Things you want to emphasize at, or missteps that you feel sorry about. Find out more about thank you emails from this article at thebalancecareers.
Failure is just another part of life. Make the most out of it!